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James Clark commits to Ohio State over Florida: Urban Meyer wins late recruiting battle

New Smyrna Beach wide receiver was reportedly leaning Florida for much of the last week. But he announced for Ohio State on National Signing Day, giving Urban Meyer a coup.

Jamie Sabau

Florida really wanted James Clark. He would have been a smart, hard-working sixth receiver for the Gators' 2013 class, which is full of smart and hard-working players.

Instead, Clark announced on National Signing Day that he is headed to Ohio State, joining Urban Meyer's Buckeyes instead of Will Muschamp's Gators.

Florida had pursued Clark hard since December, though he was initially regarded as a bit of insurance for Demarcus Robinson, who spent three weeks vacillating between Clemson and Florida. After Robinson's decision to enroll at Florida, Muschamp and Joker Phillips turned up the heat on Clark and fellow wide receiver Ryan Timmons, hoping to land one or the other to add speed to its receiving corps.

Instead, with Timmons committing to Kentucky yesterday and Clark opting for Ohio State today, Florida missed on both of its targets for a sixth wide receiver slot, and was unable to turn a really good crop of wide receivers into a great one. And, certainly, it will also burn many for Urban Meyer to have come into Florida and snagged a player the Gators really wanted at the 11th hour.

Florida is unlikely to receive a commitment from another wide receiver in this 2013 class, unless the Gators receive a commitment from a mystery prospect at the position on this Wednesday.