Florida Flips First Coast Quarterback

Jul 7, 2022 | 3 comments

After previously getting shut out and shunned in their quest to add a high school field general in the Class of 2023, Florida finally struck quarterback gold on Thursday evening by flipping Ponte Vedra (Fla.) Nease three-star signal-caller Marcus Stokes from Penn State.

Though he waited until today to announce his decision, Florida has been pursuing the 6-foot-2, 185-pounder for a couple of weeks now.

The interaction began to heat up when Stokes’ Nease squad participated in Florida’s 7-on-7 camp at the end of June.

There, as we pointed out throughout the day, both UF head coach Billy Napier and quarterback assistant Ryan O’Hara spent a great deal of time evaluating Stokes and at the end of the day, they let him know that they were interested.

“They just thought that I performed well and [said] that they would be in touch,” Stokes said of the interaction he had with the Florida staff that day.

Pontre Vedra (Fla.) Nease quarterback Marcus Stokes may already be committed to Penn State, but both Billy Napier and quarterback assistant Ryan O’Hara spent time watching him Wednesday. He was without question the top 2023 quarterback in attendance. He has a strong arm, and though it’s difficult to definitively judge during 7v7, he looks like he moves around well. He was on point for most of round-robin play, but his team lost in the opening round of the single-elimination tournament mostly due to a careless interception he threw. I didn’t get a chance to talk to him after the event to see if the UF coaches spoke to him. If Florida isn’t able to close on Jaden Rashada, he might be worth the staff circling back around and taking a closer look at.

Not long after that, Florida’s head coach himself let Stokes know that the Gators wanted him to be part of their class.

“Florida offered me before I headed to Elite11,” said Stokes. “Coach Napier did it on the phone. I definitely took a few days and waited until after Elite11 to take it into consideration.”

After finishing the Elite11 competition over the weekend, Stokes decided to make the call.

“The coaches were ecstatic and started screaming ‘Let’s go!’ So it was an awesome experience,” said Stokes as he relayed his commitment experience. “I decided to flip because there is no place like home. I grew up having love for the University of Florida. I love what coach Napier and the Florida staff are building, and I would love to be a part of it!”

Now that he’s made his decision, Stokes has jumped headfirst into helping recruit on behalf of Florida.

“After I announced my commitment today, I got right on the socials and started recruiting,” said Stokes. “This class is going to be top 10 at the end of it all.”

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