Skip to main content

Florida Gators Take the Lead for WR Andy Jean

Florida is in an ideal position for wide receiver recruit Andy Jean after his official visit with the Gators.

Photo: Andy Jean; Credit: Zach Goodall

No, Sunday was not a great day for the Florida Gators on the recruiting trail. 

The attention of UF fans was solely focused on quarterback Jaden Rashada's college announcement — which ended in a pledge to Miami — aside from when it was momentarily diverted in the afternoon to offensive lineman Roderick Kearney committing to Florida State minutes after he left his official visit in Gainesville.

RELATED: What's next for Florida after QB Jaden Rashada picked Miami?

But, despite these misses, there was some good recruiting news to come out of Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on Sunday —Miami (Fla.) Northwestern 2023 wide receiver Andy Jean named the Gators the frontrunner in his recruitment after his official UF visit wrapped up.

"[This visit,] it's got Florida at the top, for sure," Jean told AllGators. "They're my leader right now."

Florida's begun its climb to the top of Jean's recruitment by sending an offer his way just three days after he decommited from the Miami Hurricanes in March. He had unofficially visited the Gators two weeks prior and made two return trips to Gainesville between April and May before his official.

Along the way, he's been able to strengthen his bond with the Gators' new coaching staff, specifically head coach Billy Napier and wide receivers coach Keary Colbert.

"I was hanging out with coach Napier. I've been with him, every time I went out to eat I was sitting with him," Jean recalled. "That showed me I'm really a priority to him and all of his focus is really on me. Not on no selfish stuff, but, he showed me [that] he really wants me at his school and I can make a big impact to the school, for sure.

"Coach K.C., too. He showed me how my gameplay would fit into the offense and showed me how like I could be a big impact to the school and the offense."

Jean picked up on similarities between Florida's offense and the system he thrives in at Northwestern, which allowed Jean to tally 733 yards and eight touchdowns during his junior season.

Scroll to Continue

Read More

"The things [Colbert] showed me ... [it's] the same thing, [the] route-running they do and the offense they run, it's the same thing I run at my school. So, me, if I do come to Florida, I'll already be hands-on and already sculptured to rock out."

Another highlight from Jean's visit was his time spent with player host Randy Russell, a fellow Miami native who has moved into an off-field role and remained heavily involved with the program after his 2018 diagnosis of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.

Russell was able to provide Jean insight regarding how the university changed his life despite never playing a down for the Gators, which stood out to Jean in addition to his understanding of what the program could do for him on the field.

"He was just telling me, 'Andy, listen, this place could really develop you as a receiver and develop you as a person,'" Jean shared. "You see where he's at now [compared] to the situation he [was] in, the heart problem and the things he had, and now look, he's working for Florida. 

"That's major, this actually showed me that Florida will take care of you off the field and on the field."

Although Florida is in the lead now, Jean admitted that the race remains tight for his services. He recently took an official visit to Texas A&M and has three remaining, one of which he will use at Miami while the other two are undetermined. Georgia and Alabama are among the schools in the mix to secure those visits.

Those three trips, along with unofficials, will likely take place in the early fall so Jean can see his finalists in action before making his college decision, which is something he'd like to do not long afterward. Jean mentioned visiting Florida for its matchup with LSU on October 15 as a possibility.

Before then, Jean intends to return for Florida's recruit cookout and Friday Night Lights event in late July.

"I'm gonna see how the games are going," Jean said. "Like [in] September, the first games, that's what I'll make my decision off of.

"That's the next big step. Because me, personally, I want to see how the atmosphere around the school is, how to coaches when — say if the team loses, I want to see how the coaches react. How they coach up when the team loses, that's what I wanna see."

That being said, UF enters the summer recruiting dead period in as great of a spot it can be in with the talented South Florida pass-catcher.

"Florida is a place that's building," Jean remarked. "I want to go to a school that's building, not a school [that] already just has a lot, you feel me? I want to help build and I want to become a legend, wherever I go."

Stay tuned to AllGators for continuous coverage of Florida Gators football, basketball and recruiting. Follow along on social media at @SI_AllGators on Twitter and Florida Gators on Sports Illustrated on Facebook.