Florida Gators Enter Pivotal Month of August With Recruiting Momentum
The Florida Gators enter the month of August with 23 commits in their 2021 class - a bit tight on space, but with several coveted prospects remaining on their board.
Florida began picking up momentum on the recruiting trail in the middle of June, securing three defensive back commitments in four days: Winter Park (Fla.) safety Dakota Mitchell, IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.) cornerback Kamar Wilcoxson, and Gaither (Tampa, Fla.) cornerback Jordan Young.
Since, the Gators have added Peters Township (Canonsburg, Pa.) safety Donovan McMillon, Trinity Christian Academy (Jacksonville, Fla.) wide receiver Marcus Burke, Trinity Catholic (Ocala, Fla.) offensive lineman Jake Slaughter, Lake Mary (Fla.) long snapper Rocco Underwood, and Armwood (Seffner, Fla.) defensive tackle Desmond Watson to their haul.
While Florida has solidified its class with these additions over the last 44 days, August may prove to be the most crucial recruiting time frame for the Gators yet.
Florida remains in pursuit of the talent seeping from Miami Palmetto (Fla.), anxiously awaiting the decisions of defensive tackle Leonard Taylor on August 6th, safety Corey Collier Jr. on August 10th, and cornerback Jason Marshall Jr., who has not announced a commitment date but has hinted at the month of August before.
Westlake (Ga.) cornerback Nathaniel Wiggins, who previously told Sports Illustrated - AllGators that Florida and LSU were the top two schools in his recruitment, is also set to commit on August 28th.
Watson, who committed July 30th, originally announced that he would be committing in the month of August although without a specific date set. However, Watson's early commitment did not come as a surprise to the staff and his addition certainly gives the Gators a boost of momentum entering the month.
Watson is a true nose tackle, a prospect who profiles as a double-team eater in Gainesville who can wreck the run game and takes the stress off of fellow defensive linemen. It'd be hard to imagine that Taylor, a three-technique defensive tackle who could also play on the edge, isn't intrigued by pairing up with Watson on the interior line in some capacity.
Florida currently holds four defensive back commits, but could use more with four safeties set to graduate after the 2020 season alone. Enter Collier, Marshall, and Wiggins - each offering something different in their skill-set that would greatly benefit Florida's secondary.
Highly-coveted prospects such as IMG Academy linebacker Xavian Sorey Jr., Ramsay (Birmingham, Ala.) edge rusher Jeremiah Williams, and others, have yet to solidify a commitment date, and there's always room for a surprise commitment to pop up.
Given the string of top-end talents set to make their decisions, the month of August could make-or-break Florida's 2021 class. Head coach Dan Mullen and his staff have a chance to make their mark on the trail this year should prized commitments roll in over the next 31 days.