Baby Gators: Florida's 2009 Recruiting Class

Michael OleszekAnalyst IFebruary 5, 2009

In the landscape of college football, one word that sticks out more than others is: momentum. Good teams capitalize on momentum during games, great teams use momentum throughout their season, and elite teams use momentum the entire year.

There are different levels to this momentum, and right now, the University of Florida is riding another fast-building, tsunami-sized wave of momentum that has continued to build since mid-October.

A number of people will look back at the 2008 Florida football season and say that the turning point was the Ole Miss game. Not to me. For me, the true turning point was the swift and complete destruction of the LSU Tigers, only a couple of weeks following the Ole Miss game.

The 51-21 win over the defending champions really began the wave of momentum that washed over the rest of the season, leading to eventual SEC and National Championships.

The momentum continued when both Tim Tebow and Brandon Spikes decided to return for their senior seasons, and forgo millions of dollars in the NFL; which will lessen the blow of losing receivers Louis Murphy and Percy Harvin.

There is no way that the Gators would be able to keep this momentum going until September is there?? Think again.

Yesterday was National Signing Day, or Christmas in February for college coaches. It was the day were high school seniors signed the official letters of intent to play football for whichever school they choose.

The University of Florida ended up with a pretty decent class, with several players who look to step right into the mix in 2009, and help the Gators contend for another National Championship.

The Gators finished in the recruiting top 10 (according to and ESPN), and 21st (according to, and even though the Gators signed a relatively small class (16, with one more possibly signing late). Coach Urban Meyer seems to be pleased with the signing class.

Star of the Class  


WR – Andre Debose



Surprise signing


OLB – Jelani Jenkins



Diamond in the Rough

QB – Jordan Reed


The prospects for the Gators in 2009 and beyond are looking pretty good.

Total players signed: 16

Five players who could see immediate playing time.

Andre Debose, WR

Jelani Jenkins, LB

Gary Brown, DT

Edwin Herbert, DT

Xavier Nixon, OL


Nick Alajajian, OL

Jon Bostic, LB

Joshua Evans, ATH

Dee Finley, S

Mike Gillislee, RB

Jon Halapio, OL

Jonotthan Harrison, OL

Kedric Johnson, DE

Kyle Koehne, OL

Desmond Parks, TE

Jordan Reed, QB

Breakdown by position

Offensive line: 5

Defensive tackle: 2

Linebacker: 2

Athlete: 1

Defensive back: 1

Defensive end: 1

Running back: 1

Quarterback: 1

Tight end: 1

Wide receiver: 1

Breakdown by state

Florida: 8

New Jersey: 1

Alabama: 1

California: 1

Maryland: 1

Indiana: 1

North Carolina: 1

South Carolina: 1

Connecticut: 1


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