FLORIDA FOOTBALL & RECRUITING COVERAGE
- WCC: Update on three-star line commit
- WCC: Commit will sign on Wednesday
- Support staff hire helps Florida get back in the picture with five-star
- 15 players who are the Foundation of Florida Football
- Napier has a plan in place
- WCC Insider: Some notes from Florida's first bowl practice
- Coaching search consultant Landry goes in-depth on Mullen and Napier
- Head Coach Hot Board Profile: Napier
- Ranking the current commitments from least to most likely to sign with Florida
- Florida's Great Eight Targets
To be frank, the only really good news Florida has received on the recruiting front in the last couple of months was a commitment from Owasso (Ok.) four-star defensive lineman @Chris Mc">Chris McClellan, the No. 100 rated prospect in the nation according to the 247 Sports Composite.
After suffering decommitment after decommitment over the last month and a half, many in the Gator Nation were justifiably worried about holding on to McClellan after he spent two days this past weekend visiting home state Oklahoma, before finishing up with a one-day Sunday stay at Florida.
The first stop this past weekend was to Oklahoma – where new head coach Brent Venables was waiting for him.
“He got his message across about what he plans to do with the defense there. It's impressive,” explained McClellan. “Not many coaches can say that they've done what he's done. He's coached in eight national championship games, and I think he's won four of them.”
After visiting Oklahoma, McClellan, his father, and stepmother hopped on a flight to take one last look at Florida.
Because an NCAA-mandated dead period kicked in at midnight, they had to fit the visit into a tight window.
“I got there yesterday at like one o'clock and left at like four in the morning,” explained McClellan. “I spent all day with the coaches, but then after a certain time we couldn't have contact with them.”
When asked if it was worth making a trip halfway across the country in order to spend less than a full day with the coaching staff, McClellan went straight to the point.
“It was worth it because they are so enjoyable to be around. Then also, getting to see more of Gainesville and figuring out more about what it's like was awesome.”
While he was visiting Oklahoma, two former Florida commits – Nick Evers and Jayden Gibson – two prospects he is very familiar with – were on visits as well.
According to McClellan, their decisions are their own to make.
“You know, people have to look out for their own security, but building something that's going to be this good is going to take time.”
That answer sounded a whole lot like a reaffirmation of his commitment to the Gators.
“I'm with Florida,” stated McClellan. “Of course I was curious (about Oklahoma), being the home state school, right down the street, so I had to go down there and check them out, but I have so much trust in Coach [Billy] Napier and everything he is doing. I trust he is going to change the program.”
A part of that trust would be signing with Florida in less than 36 hours without a defensive line coach on staff.
However, McClellan said he won't be going in blindly.
“I have a good idea who my position coach is going to be,” stated McClellan with a laugh, “But I have to keep it a secret.”
The Inside Scoop: No one prospect is going to make or break a class or a program such as Florida's. However, had this turned out the other way, combined with all of the other decommitments, it would have been one hell of a hit for Florida to absorb – especially from a momentum and PR standpoint. Instead, this teenager talking about trusting Napier's process, and saying it convincingly, even if it starts out slow at first, is exactly the message the fanbase needs to hear.