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Florida Football Recruiting

Getting to Know: Andrew Chatfield

May 13, 2018
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Although Andrew Chatfield‍ briefly committed to Ohio State during the summer of 2017, there was a belief that the four-star 2018 recruit was ultimately going to stay in the state of Florida.

Along with considering out-of-state schools such as Alabama and OSU, Chatfield also had Florida, Florida State and Miami in the mix.

During his televised commitment on National Signing Day, there was a bit of hesitation that perhaps he was going to go against the popular opinion and was about to join his American Heritage teammate Nesta Silvera at Miami. After picking up a UM hat, however, Chatfield quickly put it down and brought out a Chucky Doll with a Florida Gators hat.

The 2018 Gators signee, who will be starting Summer A on Monday, spoke with Inside the Gators about how he came to his decision and what stood out to him about Florida. The 6-foot-3, 220-pound defensive end/outside linebacker also talked about what he needs to improve on as a football player and he gave us some insight into his personal life as well.

Today it's time to learn a little bit more about Chatfield on and off the field in this edition of Getting to Know.

Take us through the process that led to your commitment. What was that experience like for you?

Chatfield: Really, just talking with the coaches and having a good feel with the players. Marco [Wilson], [James] Houston, and T.J. [Slaton] just talk a lot about it. They played with me at Heritage. Having them up there at Florida, they just made me feel really comfortable and I felt like it was a great place for me to be at.

Which school came in second for you and why?

Chatfield: I can either say Florida State or UM.

Why were Florida State and Miami were high on your list? What did you like about them?

Chatfield: Florida State came in a little bit late. Coaching staff just got in and everything. Coaching staff had great coaches. The coaches are really good. I just didn’t get the feeling like how I felt with Florida. I think I probably just felt better at Florida.

Plus, they had a different system than Florida because Florida State runs the 4-3 and Florida runs a 3-4. I’m more of a 3-4, outside linebacker guy rushing off the edge. In Miami, it’s a 4-3 too. So I just wanted to be in a system that I can stand up and rush.

What was the craziest, strangest or weirdest moment of the recruiting cycle? Was it Jim McElwain’s firing?

Chatfield: When he got fired, I just stepped back for a little minute and was really just waiting on who would be the next coach coming in or stepping in. At the end of the day, I felt like I’m not going to a school because of a coach. I’m going to a school because I really love that school and that’s just the school for me.

[Florida] is just something special. Just being with all the dudes that I know up there and how much fun times I had up there, it was a really good feeling. It’s far from home, but it’s not too far. When [McElwain] got fired, it was sad and all, but I knew I just had to stay patient a little bit more, see what’s coming in and see if the new coach wants me or not. I was really just being patient.

If there is one thing you could change about the recruiting process, what would it be?

Chatfield: Nothing. The whole thing about me is that where God points me at, that’s where I’m going to go. I don’t really want to change anything because it could be worse or something else. I don’t know. I just know God blessed me to be in this position and I’m just blessed to take it and try to move on with it to the next level.

If you could play a sport outside of football, which sport would it be?

Chatfield: Basketball.

Did you play in high school?

Chatfield: I played a little bit in my high school and middle school actually.

What is your favorite football memory?

Chatfield: Man, there’s a lot. Really just winning the state championship with my boys and having that big medal around your neck and just living it up with you and your boys that you’ve been with since day one. Grinding all in the summer and putting all this work in, coming off two years undefeated. I think just playing with my boys and winning a state championship with them, that was the best moment for me.

What would you say are some of your greatest strengths as a football player?

Chatfield: Really rushing the quarterback and dropping back in zone coverage. Coming off pretty fast off the ball and bending my body to get to the quarterback. Reading plays. I’m really good at exposing what the offense is trying to do and what they like to do a lot. I’m very used to watching what they like to do and I just pay attention to mostly everything on the field. I catch on very quick too.

What is most appealing to you about the University of Florida?

Chatfield: It was just a great feeling. As soon as I stepped on campus, I was just excited. Every time I walk on that campus, it feels great just to be there and see the fans. The fans show you love and people know your name. Coach Dan Mullen was just straightforward with me. He didn’t play no games or sell me any dreams. None of that. He just told me what it was and I just felt really comfortable with somebody telling me straight up what something is.

Also, on his coaching staff you have Todd Grantham, who coached the defensive line on the [Dallas] Cowboys. Everything was really right because I also knew Dan Mullen when he was at Mississippi State; he offered me my ninth grade year. I talked to him only one time or twice. It was a great feeling.

What do you really need to work on the most when you get to Florida?

Chatfield: I just need to focus on my schoolwork and also on my playbook and film, really. Just really focusing on my playbook and everything. I know everything else will just take care of itself.

Who is the prospect that you have talked to the most from the Class of 2018?

Chatfield: I talked to a lot of them. Randy Russell, that’s my boy. We talked about going to Florida together and everything. The dream worked out very quick. Also, David Reese. He’s also a signee there. I’m really cool with him. Also, the boys that go to my school: Anthony Schwartz, Nesta Silvera, Patrick Surtain, Tyson Campbell. I talked to a lot of dudes about what I going to do.

What is your major?

Chatfield: I have it as sports and management right now, but once I keep looking and see what I really like… there’s a possibility I might change it.

If you had a chance to go on a dream date, who would it be with?

Chatfield:  My girlfriend.

Good answer. Who would you prefer to go to if you got drafted in the first round of the NFL Draft?

Chatfield: It doesn’t really matter what team picks me. I would be super blessed just to get in that first round or that first pick. I’m not really picky with the teams. But I think three teams I could probably say I like and I would have a good feel for is the New England Patriots, Miami Dolphins or Atlanta Falcons.

What is your favorite professional football team?

Chatfield: It’s the New England Patriots.

What is one item that you cannot live without it?

Chatfield: It’s football. Or the Chucky Doll.

Who is your favorite professional player?

Chatfield: I like watching a lot of D-Ends and outside linebackers. Lawrence Taylor, I love watching that dude. He was just a straight animal on the field. I love watching his tape and Von Miller’s.

Who has been the biggest role model for you in your life?

Chatfield: I’m going to say my boy Brian Burns. He goes to Florida State. He plays D-End right now over there. I look up to him because he helped me out a lot. He helped me improve my technique, my craft and how I watched film. Anytime I needed something or I needed help, no matter where I was at, he always helped me.

What are your favorite types of music? Do you have a favorite artist or song?

Chatfield: My favorite artists; there’s actually two of them: J. Cole and Drake. I like to listen to what everybody likes listening to mostly. I listen to Migos, J. Cole, Drake, Meek Mill and NBA Youngboy and a little bit of Kodak [Black].

What is your favorite movie?

Chatfield: Get Out. I like Get Out a lot. And Black Panther.

What is your favorite TV show?

Chatfield: Family Guy.

If you could meet one person in the world, who would that be?

Chatfield: Michael Jordan.

Getting to Know: Andrew Chatfield

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