Photo: Derrick LeBlanc; Credit: Zach Goodall
A priority target for the Florida Gators within the 2023 recruiting class, defensive lineman Derrick LeBlanc out of Osceola (Fla.) has once again changed his commitment date, while also placing UF within his top three teams to decide between.
The four-star defensive lineman will be making his commitment on July 28, and Florida remains a team within his top teams list, making the cut alongside Penn State and Oklahoma.
That list has been cut down from his previous top seven, which included Florida, UCF, Clemson, Ohio State, Miami, Penn State and Oklahoma.
LeBlanc announced the updated list and commitment day via social media on Monday. This past weekend, LeBlanc sent out a memo of sorts to reporters indicating that he would be announcing his commitment in the month of July, making a change to his revised commitment date of Oct. 22.
LeBlanc was set to announce his commitment date alongside teammates, DL John Walker and cornerback Ja'Keem Jackson. He was previously set to commit on July 23 but needed more time. It is unknown if Walker and Jackson will also move their pledges up at this time.
LeBlanc, 6-foot-5, 265 pounds is graded as the No. 8 defensive lineman in the country, along with the No. 14 player in the state of Florida. He's the No. 73 player nationally, according to On3 consensus.
The Florida native is no stranger to UF. He has visited the program at least nine times in both unofficial and official (June 10) visits since head coach Billy Napier became the program's head coach. His interest in Florida is obvious and he's had plenty of exposure to the new coaching staff, facilities and the campus.
"Talking to everybody, it's just really cool. I mean, talking with a player, that's something I really wanted to do. I mean, even though I knew him, it was just really like getting a deep understanding," LeBlanc said on his official visit earlier this month.
"Most of them wanted to leave after [former head coach Dan] Mullen and them, but [new head coach Billy] Napier made them stay. They really fell in love with the campus, and that's what they trying to make me do."
It remains to be seen where Florida currently stands in LeBlanc's recruitment, whether they are the leader of the pack or not, but it's clear the interest from both sides is there, and his updated top teams list is tangible proof of just that - along with his nearly dozen visits to Florida over the past few months.
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