It was a long time coming, but Cocoa (Fla.) three-star offensive lineman Richie Leonard now has an offer from the Florida Gators.
Despite the staff taking such an interest in him that he was receiving invitations to Spring practices and personalized graphics from the social media team, Florida officially threw their cap in the ring with just over a month before the 2020 prospect is set to commit on July 5th.
However, Leonard revealed to Inside the Gators the team is right in the mix along with everyone else.
“[The offer] means a lot to me. They came in kinda late but it’s not a slight to me and it doesn’t put them behind or anything. I’m just taking it all in.”
Offensive line coach John Hevesy was the one to pull the trigger after a thorough vetting by he and running backs coach Greg Knox, Leonard’s primary and secondary recruiters.
“I’ve had a good relationship with Coach Hevesy since I met him last summer at camp,” Leonard said. “When he offered me, he said he wanted to see me practice first and make sure I’m a hard worker and he and Coach Knox agreed that I was. Coach Knox was excited for me. He’s always been a big fan of mine.”
As an added note, the 6-foot-2, 320-pounder believes his build and style of play would mesh with Florida’s offensive line.
“I see myself fitting well. I’m an athletic offensive lineman and that’s what [the staff] likes to see in their system.”
Although the one-time Kentucky commit has yet to schedule all of his official visits, he said Florida will surely be receiving one.
“I visited Georgia Tech last week, I’m visiting Kentucky next week, and then Tennessee on June 21st. I have to talk to the [Gators] staff and schedule a visit to Florida, though. I’m planning to come sometime in June.”
Four scheduled officials will leave just one spot open for the three-star before his commitment. While he holds offers from all of the “Big Three” in-state schools (Florida, Miami, and Florida State), Leonard, who spent his formative years in Miami and grew up a Seminoles fan will most likely not get to visit both schools officially, barring a change of heart.
“It’s different growing up liking a team versus recruitment. That all kind of goes out the window when it comes to where you’re going to play and what’s best for your future.”
Leonard is the No. 852 rated prospect in the nation according to the 247 Composite.