Jan 2, 2017; Tampa , FL, USA; Florida Gators head coach Jim McElwain claps prior to the game against the Iowa Hawkeyes at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Logan Bowles-USA TODAY Sports

Gator Football Bolsters Recruiting Classes

It’s been quite a week on the recruiting trail for the Florida Gators. They’ve received eight commitments in the past week and now have 13 total members pledged to their 2018 class. Head Coach Jim McElwain and the Gators hosted a number of recruits at their annual Friday Night Lights showcase, but the recruiting momentum began to build early last week.

OL Curtis Dunlap

The good news started to roll in for Florida on Tuesday afternoon when Curtis Dunlap announced he would be joining the Gators via twitter. Dunlap, a four-star recruit, is the first offensive lineman to join the Gators’ 2018 class. He also marks the first offensive line commitment under new offensive line coach Brad Davis. Needless to say, Davis was excited about the announcement.


Dunlap checks in at 6-foot-4 and weighs 368 pounds. He hails from IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla.

TE Kyle Pitts

Florida added another four-star recruit two days later in the form of tight end Kyle Pitts. Pitts also made his announcement via twitter, as do most recruits these days, but he did so in the form of a video shot at a theme park. Georgia and Virginia Tech were the other two schools primarily under consideration.

Pitts, a Pennsylvania native, is 6-foot-5 and weighs 234 pounds. He provides McElwain with even more firepower on the offensive side of the ball.

 TE/DE Dante Lang

Lang is a 6-foot-5, 220-pound athlete who is listed as a defensive end. However, the Gators will most likely use him on the offensive side of the ball. The Boca Raton native chose the Gators over Arkansas and Kentucky.


Lang, along with Pitts, will look to fill the shoes of senior DeAndre Goolsby who will depart after this season.

OL Wardrick Wilson

The Gators didn’t just add to their 2018 recruiting class over the weekend. Wardrick Wilson gives Florida another early addition to the class of 2019. Wilson is a 6-foot-4, 295-pound offensive tackle from Miami.


Defensive coordinator Randy Shannon attended the same high school, Miami Norland Senior High School, as Wilson. There has been no shortage of athletes to come out of Norland. Other notable NFL alumni include: Antonio Brown, Dwayne Bowe, Ereck Flowers and Duke Johnson. The Gators hope to similar success from Wilson in a Florida uniform in the years to come.

 S Randy Russell

Randy Russell hails from the south Florida town of Opa-Locka. He’s a three-star safety who was previously committed to Miami. He, like many others, also announced his decision via twitter. His commitment helps Florida fill the void left after another member of the 2018 class, safety C.J. Smith, withdrew his commitment to the Gators earlier this month.

Russell weighs in at 180 pounds and stands at 5-foot-11.

QB Matt Corral

Five-star quarterback Matt Corral headlines the weekend recruiting haul for the Gators. Corral is a recent USC Trojans decommit from Long Beach, CA.

He’s a pro style quarterback with tremendous arm talent. His commitment, however, leaves many wondering about the status of top-rated, dual-threat quarterback Justin Fields. Fields, a recent Penn State decommit, is said to be heavily considering Florida State, Florida and Georgia. How Corral’s commitment will effect his decision remains to be seen.

DE Cameron Williams

About an hour after landing Corral, the Gators received a commitment from defensive end Cameron Williams. Williams is an unrated member of the class of 2019.


Williams had previously received offers from Kentucky and UCF. He weighs 215 pounds and is 6-foot-5.

WR Ja’Marr Chase

It didn’t take long for Matt Corral to receive a new offensive weapon. A day after his commitment, four-star receiver Ja’Marr Chase announced his intentions to join the Gators.


Chase is from Louisiana and weighs 197 pounds. He’s 6-foot-1 and adds yet another offensive weapon to McElwain’s 2018 class.

In total the Gators now have 13 players pledged to their 2018 class and 10 players pledged to their 2019 class. McElwain and Co. open up the 2017 regular season against Michigan on Sep. 2.

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