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Billy Napier: 'Proven' WR Ricky Pearsall Can Help Florida Gators

Billy Napier opens up on Ricky Pearsall's addition to the Florida Gators' wide receiver corps.

The biggest addition to the Florida Gators roster via the transfer portal since the end of spring camp, former Arizona State wide receiver Ricky Pearsall is expected to take on a large role rather immediately in UF's offense in the upcoming season.

Understanding the Gators had a major need for a play-making receiver, new head coach Billy Napier utilized his ties to the Sun Devils in order to communicate with Pearsall and ultimately land his services. 

Napier was the offensive coordinator at ASU in 2017 and several UF staff members were with the program in some capacity while Pearsall was in Tempe.

"We're in an era here where we can add players to the team at certain times of the year, right? December signing day, the winter portal, February signing day and certainly the spring portal," Napier said on Thursday night before UF's Gainesville speaking event. "And each individual situation is case by case.

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"We felt like Ricky's skill set fit our team, fit our offense. We had some familiarity. There was some relationships there because the year in Arizona State some of our staff members, some of the common relationships. So I think Ricky's a good person. I think he's competitive. I think that he's proved himself." 

RELATED: How can Ricky Pearsall boost the Gators' offense?

As has been noted in AllGators' scouting report of Pearsall's game, he is set to provide Florida with a different type of skill-set than what is common among UF's receivers: Someone who can run swift routes and create explosive plays after the catch by making defenders miss and hitting top speed quickly.

"He's been a very productive player and I think he can get open, I think he can catch the ball. He's proved to be a run-after-catch player. I think he's got some toughness to his game. He can play on special teams. I think he gives; we're adding a player that has had a ton of production in the past and we feel like the player can help our team."

Pearsall caught 61 passes for 794 yards and five touchdowns during his three seasons with the Sun Devils, posting 48 catches for 580 yards and four touchdowns in his breakout junior campaign. He's also scored twice as a rusher and once as a passer.

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