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The Alligator Army Weekly Open Thread, Vol. LV

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On Florida’s revved up recruiting.

Though it’s always a good time to be a Florida Gator, this past weekend was pretty fine. Of course, the Gators had plenty of great moments in the 2016-17 athletic season, across all sports, but as the summer doldrums carry on, and football season approaches, it’s always refreshing to get some additional positive shine on the program.

UF hosted their annual summer recruiting showcase, Friday Night Lights, this past weekend with coveted prospects from all over the country descending on Gainesville to show off their skills, mingle with other recruits, and spend time with Florida’s coaching staff. The Gators’ recruiting labors bore fruit, as five prospects pledged themselves to Florida after the event - with three more having popped for the Gators prior to Friday night.

Florida picked up six new members of their blossoming 2018 class, including quarterback Matt Corral, wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase, offensive lineman Curtis Dunlap, tight ends Kyle Pitts and Dante Lang, and safety Randy Russell. UF also added to their top-three ranked 2019 class with the additions of defensive end Cameron Williams and offensive lineman Wardrick Wilson.

The biggest get for the Gators was highly sought-after California quarterback Corral, who gives Florida their highest-rated quarterback in the Jim McElwain era and, probably the most significant commitment of his tenure thus far.

There are signs that the Gators aren’t done yet either. Plenty of positive buzz surrounded Florida after Friday Night Lights, and after the commitments of some of the above mentioned recruits.

Another top Florida target, four-star wide receiver Jacob Copeland, was in Gainesville this past weekend and has decided to move his commitment up to an unspecified time in the near future, rather than announcing his choice at next year’s Under Armour All-America Game. Copeland tweeted that he was instead going to release a commitment video with his decision, and that he would be filming (presumably that video) on Wednesday.

Florida’s recruiting seems to be trending in the right direction, and Jim McElwain’s offseason hires of Ja’Juan Seider and Brad Davis appear to already be paying dividends on the trail.

How are you feeling about the current state of Florida recruiting? Has your level of faith in McElwain and company’s ability to reel in the big fish improved?


As always, this Weekly Open Thread is for any and all comments on any and all topics, with the rules of commenting decorum still in full effect.