JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Signing Day Part II is here. About 80 percent of available scholarships in FBS were scooped up during the early signing period in December. Wednesday was the beginning of the traditional February signing period.
The Florida Gators got things started with a notable flip. Khris Bogle, a pass rusher out of Fort Lauderdale, had committed to Alabama during a national high school all-star game last month. But on signing day Bogle, a four-star prospect, signed with coach Dan Mullen's Gators.
“I think that's huge for us,” said Mullen of essentially beating out Alabama and Georgia for a couple of top recruits. “Those are, right now those are the teams that played for the SEC championship this year and that's the level we want to be on. So being able to win those recruiting battles is going to help to hopefully beat them on the field as well.”
Overall the Gators are expected to finish with their first Top-10 recruiting class in the last five years. However, Mullen doesn’t focus on recruiting rankings.
“I don't always get too caught up in all the rankings because there's guys, to be honest with you,” said Mullen. “There that there are a lot of people, you don't call out one site or another, recruiting sites and all the different rankings systems that are out there, that I'll look and that we have ranked much higher than maybe other people do. And there's ones that have guys that we have ranked much lower than people outside of our staff do. So within our evaluations, I kind of trust our evaluations and we do and there will be some that -- I've gone in the past and looked at guys and said, hey, this guy's ranked as a five-star player and we just don't see that. There's other guys that we ranked as a three-star player and we'll sit there or two-star player.”
This year the Gators signed 15 recruits from the state of Florida. Winning the sunshine state was one of the major goals for Mullen and his staff.
“I think it is huge, I mean we are the University of Florida,” said Mullen. “I think for young men in this state, the opportunity to go -- you know what, there's, this coming Friday is a huge deal, because there are acceptance letters going out on Friday here at the university and there will be a lot of celebrating, like we had in our office today, about having people come to Florida. But there's also going to be a lot of people celebrating the opportunity to come to the University of Florida around the state.”