Spring Evaluation Period Sunshine State Breakdown
Yes, it is a tacky play on words, but spring has sprung so to speak.
On Monday high school spring football kicked off in the state of Florida.
By rule the first two days are conducted in helmets only. Then the teams are required to spend three days in shells (helmets and shoulder pads) before going to full pads on day number-six.
For high school coaches and players it is a five week practice window that affords them the opportunity to get better.
For college coaches it is a feeding frenzy. An opportunity to not only either establish or strengthen bonds with targets, but a chance to perhaps expand their board with new offers if a player has improved enough to warrant receiving one.
Heading into spring football 30 prospects who are rated as four-stars or above in the Sunshine State have Florida listed as a possibility in the database.
* Historically speaking the First Coast (North Florida - Jacksonville area) is seen as Florida hotbed, but there simply aren't many top tier targets in the area this cycle.
* The Bay area has also been a Gators stronghold in the past. After being down somewhat in the 2017 cycle, the area is loaded with Florida targets this time around.
* Central Florida north - the Orlando area other than Apopka - hasn't been overly kind to the Gators recently. What is surprising is that kids such as Justin Watkins (Ocala) and JaShaun Corbin (Melbourne) are already committed elsewhere from what should be Florida friendly schools. Central Florida south has been more hospitable to the Gators, but isn't loaded with talent the cycle.
* The trend started last year, and for Florida's sake they'll need for it to continue this year - the area where the Gators have the most top tier targets is once again South Florida. In the breakdown below the area is expanded from Dade County up to Fort. Pierce for the purposes of our breakdown.
* Florida will have to do exceptionally well in the Bay area and South Florida to pull a top class this cycle. The Gators will need to see about 70% or more of their in-state signees to come from these two regions. The truth is, that looks to be very doable.
The ranking breakdown is as follows:
* Rivals ranking 1-to-100 = 10 prospects
* Rivals Ranking 101-to-250 = 11 prospects
* Rivals four-stars outside of the Rivals250 = 9 prospects
* Seven of the 30 prospects are committed, two to Florida, five to other programs.