While Florida scrambles to finish its 2015 recruiting class, the final piece of the few Will Muschamp assembled for the 2016 recruiting class fell out of place on Tuesday: 2016 cornerback Tyler Byrd, a four-star player, has flipped from the Gators to Miami, according to 247Sports's Ryan Bartow.
Byrd committed to Florida in June 2013 — earlier than any recruit currently in Florida's 2015 class — so he was going to have to stay in the Gators' pocket for over two and a half years to make it to Gainesville, and that clearly won't be the case unless he should eventually flip back.
But Byrd was my favorite of the four 2016 players who have committed to Florida — even over Chauncey Gardner, who a) decommitted from Miami to flip to Florida and b) isn't just from from my stomping grounds in Brevard County, but my neighborhood in Cocoa — because of his fantastic athleticism, and his skills as a track star for Naples may well translate into big things at the next level.
Truly, though, Florida's 2016 class is fully Jim McElwain's to build: Byrd, Gardner, and Tre Jackson were the only players to pledge to Muschamp, and Garder's December decommitment and Jackson's Monday reneging leave Florida with just receiver Rick Wells in the 2016 class.
For now, anyway.