National Signing Day Predictions: Who Gets Most Florida Talent, UM, FSU or UF?
It's pretty safe to say that if you own the state of Florida in recruiting, there is a very good possibility you will have one of college football's most successful programs.
Here are just a few of the eventual NFL players that came out of the Sunshine State's prep ranks: Deion Sanders, Emmitt Smith, Derrick Brooks, Jevon Kearse, Tim Tebow, Ray Lewis, C.J. Spiller, Lomas Brown, Jerome Brown, Michael Irvin, Jack Youngblood, Edgerrin James, Larry Little, Vince Wilfork, Pat Summerall, Steve Hutchinson, Fred Taylor, Anquan Boldin, Ottis Anderson, Anthony Carter, Brian Dawkins, Daunte Culpepper, Reinard Wilson, James Jones, Frank Gore, Bob Hayes, Ted Hendricks, Devin Hester, Rickey Jackson, Andre Johnson, Wilber Marshall, Danny Wuerffel, Marty Lyons, Sam Madison, Deacon Jones, Wes Chandler, Leroy Butler, Cris Collinsworth, Gerard Warren, Warren Sapp, John L. Williams and Linval Joseph.
I could have gone on and on, but you get the point.
Florida is loaded, and it is every year.
So, of the "Big Three" programs—Florida, Florida State and Miami—who will sign the most in-state prospects this year?
Here is a look at the three programs and the in-state commitments they have, as well as the uncommitted prospects from Florida who each could land.
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Current in-state commitments (10): DB Willie Bailey (Hallandale), DE Bryan Cox, Jr. (Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas), OL Jessamen Dunker (Boynton Beach), RB Matt Jones (Seffner Armwood), Marcus Maye (Melbourne Holy Trinity), DT/OT Dante Phillips (Venice), WR Latroy Pittman (Citra North Marion), CB Brian Poole (Bradenton Southeast), OLB Jeremi Powell (Largo) and TE Kent Taylor (Land O'Lakes).
In-state targets still in play: WR Nelson Agholor (Tampa Berkeley Prep), DE Dante Fowler (St. Petersbur Lakewood), CB Tracy Howard (Miramar), ILB Schyler Miles (Tampa Berkeley Prep), DL Leonard Williams (Daytona Beach Mainland) and OT Avery Young (Palm Beach Gardens).
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Current in-state commitments (six): PK Robert Aguayo (Groveland South Lake), WR Marvin Bracy (Orlando Boone), Dante Fowler, Jr. (St. Petersburg Lakewood), RB Mario Pender (Cape Coral, already signed and enrolled), DT Daivon Stuckey (DeFuniak Springs Walton) and DB P.J. Williams (Ocala Vanguard).
In-state targets still in play: WR Nelson Agholor (Tampa Berkeley Prep), CB Tracy Howard (Miramar), WR Ricardo Louis (Miami Beach) and DT/DE Leonard Williams (Daytona Beach Mainland).
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Current in-state commitments (24): DB Deon Bush (Miami Columbus), DB Antonio Crawford (Tampa Plant), QB Gray Crow (Clearwater Countryside), DB Vernon Davis (Miami Coral Reef), RB Danny Dillard (Venice), DB Nate Dortch (South Fort Myers), OL Ereck Flowers (Miami Norland), DE Jelani Hamilton (Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas), DE Dwayne Hoilett (Vero Beach), TE Brandon Hollifield (Tallahassee Godby), DB Larry Hope (Miami American), OL Daniel Isidora (Weston Cypress Bay), ATH Angelo Jean-Louis (Wellington Palm Beach Central), DB Rayshawn Jenkins (St. Petersburg Admiral Farragut), RB Randy Johnson (Miami Norland), WR D'Mauri Jones (Leesburg), WR Malcolm Lewis (Miramar), DE Tyriq McCord (Tampa Jefferson), DT Earl Moore (Tampa Hillsborough), LB Reggie Northrup (Jacksonville First Coast), DE Gabriel Terry (Wellington Palm Beach Central), QB David Thompson (Miami Westminster Christian), WR Herb Waters (Homestead) and LB Josh Witt (Weston Cypress Bay).
In-state targets still in play: CB Tracy Howard (Miramar)
With 24 in-state commitments, Miami will sign the most Floridians this February of the "Big Three." Which team ends up with the most quality will be seen in a few years.
Here is a look at two key storylines for National Signing Day.
Howard's Endgame: The only player UF, FSU and UM continues to battle one another for is Miramar cornerback Tracy Howard.
The guess here is Florida's strong run the last few months will help overcome a slow start and Howard will wind up a Gator.
Two factors that could be to Miami's benefit are that the Hurricanes are located 30 minutes from Howard's home and that "The U" got his final visit. Still, the prediction is UF.
Will Fowler Flip? St. Petersburg Lakewood defensive end Dante Fowler, Jr. has been a longtime Florida State commitment, but he never has been shy about expressing his affection for archrival Florida.
It got so comical that at a recent all-star game when some Gator commitments got together for a photo, they called over Fowler (he declined), half-joking he was going to end up in Gainesville anyway.
Still, the pick here is he sticks with the Seminoles, but that storyline is worth following closely.