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Florida football recruiting: Gerald Willis commits to Gators over LSU

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A Louisiana stud opting to leave the state for Florida? That's a surprise.

Will Muschamp and Brad Lawing
Will Muschamp and Brad Lawing
USA TODAY Sports

After a week in which Dalvin Cook's flip to Florida State dominated headlines, Louisiana defensive lineman Gerald Willis gave Florida a positive headline on Thursday, committing to the Gators over in-state favorite LSU.

Willis was considered a long-time LSU lean, and Louisiana natives are notoriously difficult to pull out of the Pelican State, but Willis, whose mother is also the mother of Alabama safety Landon Collins, chose to take his talents to Gainesville. Willis recently made comments indicating that Collins — who shocked the world and miffed his mother when he committed to Alabama over LSU on live television in 2012 — was crucial in his decision to leave the state.

Willis is rated as a four-star strong side defensive end, and though he's light for SEC pass-rushers at 250 pounts, he will enroll early at Florida, and should develop into a nice anchor on the line. If he's set up outside early in his career, as is likely, he will provide support for the pass rush, a unit that showed much improvement in 2013.