Posted on: January 30, 2010 2:08 pm

Current FSU commit Demar Dorsey's Legal Troubles

Written by James Brown, Co-Founder of Gatorsfirst.com

In the last day, Gatorsfirst recruiting correspondent DK_Thompson has learned of former Gator commit, expected FSU commit Demar Dorsey's legal troubles. The information was first reported on his twitter account here .

You can check them out from an indisputable source <a href="http://www.clerk-17th-flcourts.org/Clerkwebsite/BCCOC2/Pubsearch/case_search_results.aspx?hidSearchType=party_case&txtLastName=dorsey&txtFirstName=demar&txtMiddleInitial=&txtBusinessEntity=&chkAdvSearch=0&cboCourtType=&sbmPublicParty=Submit&user_type=&DisplayCitation=yes&DisplayType=Criminal" target="_blank">here .

Now, I have no idea the specifics of these cases, and am no legal expert. I don't know if they'll all go away, or what.

The reason I think it's noteworthy: I think it's a possible explanation for the way his recruiting went down . When his commitment wavered, he had some curious quotes about not speaking to the UF coaches, etc. It now seems as if the UF coaches backed off, possibly after hearing about this legal situation. Did his commitment waver in the first place because UF coaches had backed off with so many other defensive backs?

No matter how you look at it, it's a different situation than how the coaching staff handled the Matt Elam saga.

You can fid the original post here: http://gatorsfirst.com/index.php/fl

Posted on: January 28, 2010 7:44 am

Dorsey dropped, McFarland no longer a Grey Shirt

Written by Daniel Thompson, Recruiting Guru for Gatorsfirst.com

Michael McFarland is no longer ''gray shirting'' because the Gators have dropped Demar Dorsey and now have the extra room available to include McFarland. As I wrote here, the Gators asked Michael McFarland to gray shirt because the class was filling up quickly and McFarland has a significant amount of work to do and weight to add.

Demar Dorsey

On Wednesday January 27th, it was reported on Gatorbait.net and a few other sources, that the Gators have indeed dropped Demar Dorsey. Demar was considering offers from FSU and USC. He visited FSU on January 23rd and will visit USC on January 29th. Throughout his commitment, he has considered himself:60% committed90-95% commited and most recently 50-50. Furthermore, Demar said in an interview with Gatorbait.net, that he has not heard from the Gators since January 21st.

The Gators most likely dropped Demar to avoid any chance of losing him on National Signing Day -- it was rumored he was going to spurn the Gators on February 3rd, ala Nukeese Richardson and others.

As I stated here, I thought Demar Dorsey would be the only Gator that might not be in the class come February 3.

Michael McFarland

With the loss of Demar Dorsey, Dan McCarney called Michael and said they no longer want Michael to gray shirt and expect to have room for him. McFarland must now work harder to be ready for his June enrollment at the University of Florida, instead of January had he taken the gray shirt.

After being asked the gray shirt, Auburn and two other schools offered Michael McFarland a scholarship with June enrollment. Michael contemplated a visit to Auburn but said that he would sign with the Gators.

I still expect Michael McFarland to redshirt as I stated here.

You can find the original article here: http://gatorsfirst.com/index.php/fl

Posted on: January 25, 2010 2:10 pm

2010 UF TE Commit McFarland agrees to Grey Shirt

Written by Daniel Thompson, Recruiting Guru for Gatorsfirst.com 

Tampa Blake High School TE Michael McFarland (6'6, 230 lbs) has agreed to a gray shirt. McFarland is ranked 24th best TE in the country and the 84th best player in the state of Florida, according to Rivals.com.

A "gray shirt" means that the player who was supposed to enroll in the Summer or Fall, while instead enroll in January of the following year. Further, Michael will count as a 2011 commitment.

There a couple of reasons why Michael may have been asked to gray shirt:

One, as I stated here, Michael is still very raw and would have most likely redshirted. Moreover, he is still quite weak and needs to add some weight to his 6'6 body. So instead of wasting a year in the gym, they gave him a workout plan and asked him to work with a trainer.

Two, the staff expects spots to be filled. The Gators currently have 26 commitments and are expected to take between 28-31 players and the NCAA regulates that only 85 players can be scholarship. Perhaps the staff is preparing for a few more commitments from top prospects around the country.

What this means for the Gators: Desmond Parks and Gerald Christian will be asked to take a lot of reps, which may be a lot to ask for a redshirt freshman and a true freshman. Furthermore, we may see redshirt freshman QB Jordan Reed step on to the field as a tight end. He started practicing with the tight ends at the end of last season and with only two tight ends it may be necessary for him to play.

You can find the original article here: http://gatorsfirst.com/index.php/fl

Posted on: January 24, 2010 2:28 pm

Gators receive surprise 26th Commitment

Written by Daniel Thompson, Recruiting Guru for Gatorsfirst.com

Connecticut QB Tyler Murphy is the Gators newest commitment. Tyler Murphy, who was previously committed to Temple, committed to the Gators over the weekend after an official visit.

Murphy is a 6'2, 190 pound dual-threat QB, who ran a 4.4 forty yard dash and has a 35 inch vertical jump.

Murphy passed for 1,124 yards and nine touchdowns and rushed for 1,1213 yards and 15 touchdowns on 130 carries as a senior.

This may come as a surprise to some Gator fans, but with uncertainty of Trey Burton and some recruiting targets signing with other schools, a spot opened up for Murphy.

Murphy will be the Gators second QB in as many classes from Connecticut (Jordan Reed).

You can read the original article here: http://gatorsfirst.com/index.php/fl

Posted on: January 23, 2010 10:46 am

Analyzing the 2010 Gators Recruiting Class Part 2

Written by Daniel Thompson, Recruiting Guru for Gatorsfirst.com

The 2009 season had its ups and downs, but one thing that stayed pretty fluid, sans the SEC Championship, was the dominance of the Florida Gators defense. The defense had a litany of playmakers in all three sections of the defense. Carlos Dunlap and Jermaine Cunningham dominated the defensive line, Brandon Spikes and Ryan Stamper played great at linebacker and Joe Haden and Major Wright held down the passing attack as premier defensive backs. Unfortunately for Gator fans, all six of these players graduated.

Furthermore, Defensive Coordinator Charlie Strong left to become the Head Coach of Louisville and Cornerbacks Coach Vance Bedford joined Strong at Louisville to become the Defensive Coordinator. The Gators replaced these two losses by hiring former Miami Dolphins LB Coach, George Edwards as Defensive Coordinator, and hired Stanford Linebackers Coach D.J. Durkin to the same position for the Gators and Safeties Coach Chuck Heater had his role expanded to include all defensive backs.

Needless to say, this year will be a significantly different defensively. However, the Gators have great depth and have recruited the consensus number 1 defensive class in the country, so expect the Gators to be just as dominate.



Neiron Ball – (6’4, 210 lbs from Jackson, GA) Neiron, who is already enrolled on campus, will need to put on a good amount of weight before the start of the season to even consider playing time. He is a very speedy defensive end (ran a sub 4.6 40-yard dash at Friday Night Lights), but will undoubtedly lose some of that speed as he adds some size. In high school, Neiron had a knack for getting into the back field and the Gator staff hopes he can play a Jermaine Cunningham type role after he grows into his frame. Neiron will be one to look for in two or three years.

Ronald Powell – (6’4, 230 lbs from Moreno Valley, CA) Ronald Powell is one of Urban Meyer’s biggest recruiting coups in his five year tenure with the Gatos. Very seldom does any coach go to California and steal a prospect right out of USC’s backyard. However, Urban Meyer sold Ronald on a family atmosphere, as well as his ability to put defensive lineman in to the NFL. Ronald is tall, strong, fast, agile, smart and has great technique. Furthermore, as we saw in the Army All-American game, he can play Tight End and Linebacker as well. Ronald Powell will be a star and he will play in the 2010 season. Three years from now, Ronald Powell will be considered one of the best Gator defensive linemen ever.

Lynden Trail – (6’7, 220 lbs from Miami, FL) Very simple, Lynden is tall and lanky. You can compare his height to Carlos Dunlap and his weight to Chas Henry. After a season or two, I imagine Lynden will weigh between 245-260 lbs, so I do not imagine you will see him on the field too much before then. Lynden is a very quick Defensive End and will beat a lot of offensive lineman because of that speed. Furthermore, he keeps is eyes on the ball carrier at all times is a very hard worker, that doesn’t give up until the play is officially done. Look out for Lynden in two years or so.



Dominique Easley – (6’3, 258 lbs from Staten Island, NY) Dominique Easley was the official end to the horrible month of December for the Gators and a huge January welcome after Easley surprised the world and picked the Florida Gators at the Under Armour All-American game. The defensive MVP for the Under Armour All-Star game is speedy and extremely strong. He has a non-stop motor and knows how to get leverage against offensive lineman. Dominique will be a mainstay on the DL for the next three to four years. Although if we switch to a 3-4 defense he will probably play slightly less than…

Sharrif Floyd – (6’3, 310 lbs from Philadelphia, PA) Sharrif Floyd will play a significant amount of time next season and if the Gators switch to a 3-4 defense will play the nose tackle position. Sharrif has the ability to drive lineman and will need to be double teamed. He is extremely strong, both in the legs and arms, which will allow him to stay low, while keeping balance but pushing the offensive line back towards the quarterback. Floyd will be one of the top defensive tackles in the country by his sophomore year.

Leon Orr – (6’4, 300 lbs from New Port Richey, FL) Leon Orr is currently in Gainesville, but not enrolled for academic reasons. Furthermore, Leon Orr played OL in High School, but projects as a DT in college and as such will be rather raw at the DT position which will be loaded especially with the additions of Floyd and Easley. However, Leon Orr is extremely athletic and extremely quick especially for his size. I would not be surprised to see Leon Orr head back to the offensive line as a guard after a little while simply because of his size and quickness.



Gideon Ajagbe – (6’2, 197 lbs from Coconut Grove, FL) Ajagbe is small, very small. He will need to add at least 20 pounds to play the strong side linebacker spot that Urban wants him at. However, he is very speedy and pretty strong for his size. He will be at least a two year project if they keep him at LB, but do not sleep on him as a RS Junior or Senior.

Michael Taylor – (6’1, 205 from Atlanta, GA) Michael Taylor was originally committed to Tennessee, but after the departure of Lane Kiffin, Taylor jumped ship and joined the Gators. Michael Taylor was the Co-Defensive MVP from the Under Armour All American game and was considered one of the biggest surprises of the week. He is quick and plays with good instincts and at the same time, is a tough hitter. Michael will probably redshirt this season, but will be a good one for the Gators as an outside linebacker.



Demar Dorsey – (6’1, 175 from Lauderdale Lakes, FL) Demar is a great player, with exceptional speed and great coverage skills. As a junior in High School, he was clocked at 4.25 in the forty and was named by Rivals.com as the fastest player at the Under Armour All-American game. Not only is Dorsey fast, he plays great in coverage and has good field smarts. Demar had a great interception at the Under Armour game and showed that he is always around the ball. Dorsey is one of the only players that I would worry about losing from this recruiting class. He is visiting FSU on the 23<sup>rd</sup> of January and USC on the 29<sup>th</sup> of January. However, if the Gators have a good in-home visit the week before National Signing Day, I expect him to stay with the Gators.

Matt Elam – (6’0, 205 lbs from West Palm Beach, FL) Anybody that even remotely followed recruiting his year is already tired of Matt Elam. Matt Elam was committed to Florida, then decommitted, then committed to FSU, then decommitted and re-committed to Florida in less than a week. Despite all the drama, Elam is worth it. Elam is strong, agile, versatile and relatively quick. I imagine Elam will play special teams this season and play a little safety, but will not start until he is at least a sophomore. One of Elam’s downfalls, however, is his desire to always go for the big hit, somewhat similar to Major Wright.

Jordan Haden – (6’0, 198 lbs from Ft. Washington, MD) Jordan Haden is the brother of All-Pro Joe Haden and was considered at the same age, as more athletic. He is fast, instinctive and has great coverage skills. Furthermore, he runs a 4.41 forty yard dash and is pretty strong for his size. I expect Haden to grow into a linebacker in College as he is the third best Safety in this class alone and has the body build to add 20-30 more pounds. Look forward to another great Haden Gator.

Cody Riggs – (5’9, 156 lbs from Ft. Lauderdale, FL) Along with FSU commit Lamarcus Joyner, Riggs helped St. Thomas Aquinas have one of the top secondary’s in the country. As I am sure you can tell Cody Riggs is very light. He will need to add at least 15 pounds to even fill out his frame. But at the same time, Riggs is extremely fast (4.43 forty) and has great coverage skills, including hip change and good ball skills. He will play on kickoff coverage as he will be tough to block. It will be interesting to see how the added weight will affect his play.

Josh Shaw – (6’1, 195 lbs from Palmdale, CA) Josh was dominate at the Under Armour game and could fight for a starting position this year. Shaw is strong, fast and has great ball skills. Moreover, at 6’1 he is the perfect size for an elite cornerback. Josh Shaw is another great grab for Urban Meyer, as went into California and pulled a recruit from USC. Josh Shaw will play next year and he will be dominate.

Jaylen Watkins – (5’11, 172 lbs from Cape Coral, FL) Jaylen Watkins has good height, great speed and plays very well within the first five yards of the line of scrimmage. However, he is slightly skinny and not very strong. He will need to add about 15 pounds of muscle to “out muscle” wide receivers at the next level. I expect Jaylen to redshirt or play special teams only his first year. Jaylen can also play wide receiver, so if the Gators are not having much production in the next two years, you may look for this switch.


This is part 2 of 3, which will cover the Florida Gators recruiting class. Part 1 will deal with Offense, Part 2 will deal with Defense and Part 3 will deal with Athletes/Special Teams.

Posted on: January 20, 2010 3:30 pm
Edited on: January 20, 2010 4:23 pm

Gator Nation Sports Page Wednesday, January 20


Written by James Brown, Co-Founder of Gatorsfirst.com

While most of the recent Florida Gators news surrounds the football and basketball team (check out the first in a series of 3 recruiting pieces here), there have been many stories that I didn't feel necessary to cover in their own blog, but you might find interesting nonetheless.

You can always get Florida Gators news from all over the internet, up-to-the-minute right here.  There's no reason to waste valuable time during your lunch break loading a bunch of pages, when bookmarking that link will allow you to browse all the news at once.

On to what's been happening this week...

Tim Tebow is a professional now, and he and his mother, Pam, filmed a Super Bowl ad for Focus on the Family.  CBS rejects "controversial" ads every year- and the fact that the ad centers on abortion qualifies this ad as such- so it remains to be seen if this ad will be, well, seen.  Regardless of your stance on abortion, I love the story of how doctors wanted Pam to get an abortion due to her sickness... she didn't, took steroids.. and Timmy grows up to be 250 lbs. of concrete cyanide.

Wondy Pierre-Louis, who last week rejoiced at the news his parents survived the Haiti earthquake, this week has been in legal trouble for an alleged altercation between himself and a woman.  He posted bail this morning.  The woman testified that Wondy is not a danger.

In other legal news, Steve Babik of the Gators radio network was fired after being arrested on charges of child pornography.

If you've cared about Florida basketball at all in the last decade, you're doing yourself a disservice by not reading this AOL Fanhouse piece on Teddy Dupay.  The article talks about his current work to legalize marijuana, and gives some tidbits about his post-UF basketball career.  I loved the story of his hitting 11 of 14 3-pointers against Louisville in an exhibition game, where Pitino ended up benching Taquan Dean so that Teddy wouldn't totally destroy his defensive confidence by "90 points".  Dupay hardly breaks news by stating that all he knew about marijuana in college was that "Jason Williams smoked a lot of it".  By the way, Jason Williams is still in the NBA, playing for the Magic- and in their recent 3 game losing streak, he's struggled- but scored 12 and 14 points in the two wins before that.  As goes J-Will, so go the Magic?

Don't miss the Florida Gators v. Arkansas Razorbacks basketball game tomorrow night on ESPN at 9pm ET.  And post-game analysis right here on GatorsFirst.com!

You can view the original article here: http://gatorsfirst.com/index.php/fl


Posted on: January 18, 2010 9:45 pm
Edited on: January 18, 2010 9:51 pm

Analyzing the 2010 Gators Recruiting Class Part 1

Written by Daniel Thompson, Recruiting Guru for Gatorsfirst.com

Since Urban Meyer became the coach of the Gators in 2005, the Gators have had one of the most prolific offenses in the country. A large portion of his success his due to the staff's ability to recruit and develop playmakers at all positions. Whether, it has been Tim Tebow at QB, Percy Harvin at WR, Jeff Demps at RB, Aaron Hernandez at TE or the Pouncey twins on the Offensive Line, the Gators have had some of the biggest, fastest and strongest players in the country.

However, during Urban Meyers tenure there have been some questions at WR and RB, whether it was lack of a power running back that is a downhill runner or the lack of a true deep-threat wide receiver.

Moreover, the Gators are losing Riley Cooper and David Nelson as Wide Receivers, Aaron Hernandez at TE and the biggest loss, Tim Tebow at QB.

The 2010 recruiting class, which is ranked number 1 in the country, will try to help fill some of these voids.


Trey Burton -- (6'2, 203 lbs from Venice, FL) Trey Burton was one of the first commitments to the Florida Gators back in July of 2008. Trey has considered a dual-threat QB, relying heavily on running. Trey is a 3-star prospect that will require a lot of assistance from QB coach Scot Loeffler, as he is not the most precise passer and does not have the strongest arm. He is still a little lanky and will need to add some size. Some have compared him to Tim Tebow...I don't. He will need to redshirt this season and may not play until he is a RS Junior. However, Trey is one of the Gators best recruiters, including the staff, and will be an emotional leader even if he is not the best prospect. Due to Trey being a bit of a project, look for the Gators to recruit and sign two QBs in 2011. Gators are interest in quite a few QB's including probable 5-star Christian LeMay, probable 4-stars Everett Golson and Teddy Bridgewater.


Mack Brown -- (5'11, 185 lbs from Lithonia, GA) Mack Brown committed right in front of my eyes (as I was the first to report here: http://bit.ly/5Hb9pE)) at Friday Night Lights. Mack Brown is one of Urban Meyer's favorite recruits as the Gators have struggled in Georgia and Mack Brown is one of the first pure downhill running backs Urban has been able to pull a commitment from. Mack Brown has great size and great speed for his size. He also is great after contact and will be even better after he adds a few pounds. Mack Brown has had a hamstring problem for the past season and re-aggravated it at the Under Armour All-American Game, but should be just fine for the summer.


Quinton Dunbar -- (6'3, 170 lbs from Miami, FL) Quinton Dunbar is big &X& wide receiver. An &X& receiver, also called a Split end, lines up at the line of scrimmage opposite the tight end. They usually run deep routes and with the goal of clearing the Cornerback and hopefully a safety. The Gators used Riley Cooper this past season and Louis Murphy the season before that. The Gators lacked some production at the X receiver slot this year, mostly due to Riley Cooper lacking some breakaway speed. Quinton Dunbar will probably not help solve his problem, however. He is a bit lanky and not very strong. He is still needs some help with route running and will need to hit the weight room when he gets to Gainesville. He does decent speed and jumping ability will allow him to catch in coverage and in jump-ball situations.

Chris Dunkley -- (5'10, 164 lbs from Pahokee, FL) Chris Dunkley committed to the Gators at the Under Armour All-American game, although he has been considered a Gator silent since Friday Night Lights. Chris dominated the competition at FNL this past summer. While he is a little small, he can still add some size to 177-180 pounds. He is a very fast WR and has great agility. He will likely play in the Slot next year, catching a lot of dump offs, screens and crossing routes.

Solomon Patton (5'10, 175 lbs from Mobile, AL)
Solomon Patton performed outstandingly at the Under Armour All-American game and will fit perfectly into the Gators offensive scheme. He is a very shifty runner, has great strength for his size and is a dynamite returner. He also runs great routes and catches with his hands not his body. In my opinion, he will be a much more complete Brandon James, who will make a big mark on offensive, as well as special teams.


Gerald Christian (6'3, 220 lbs from West Palm Beach, FL) Gerald Christian is a big, muscular TE similar to the Patriots Benjamin Watson or Antonio Gates from the San Diego Chargers. He has good speed and has great strength which will make him tough to matchup to, as well as tackle. He will be relied on this season to replace some of Aaron Hernandez's touches, as Desmond Parks, Freshman Michael McFarland and QB/TE Jordan Reed are the only TE's on the team. He could be a 3-4 year starter for the Gators and will make a large impact on Special teams.

Michael McFarland (6'6, 230 lbs from Tampa, FL) Michael McFarland is very tall, but still very raw. He played on a pretty weak Blake High School football team, but still performed well. He runs a 4.75, which is good for a tall TE, but he will need to probably redshirt this next season and spend a considerable amount of time in the gym. He has big hands and will be a mismatch problem as well. Time will tell on how good McFarland will be in the end, but he is definitely a project.


Ian Silberman (6'5, 257 lbs from Fleming Island, FL) Ian Silberman is a great kid. I got to know Ian when I worked in the University of Florida Football Recruiting Office; he is a very well-spoken and smart young man. Ian is a premier tackle, but will still likely redshirt this season. He comes in lean, similar to Matt Patchan (before he lost a lot of weight due to Mono), but strong. He will need to add 20-35 pounds to be a good sized tackle. He has a great football stance and has long arms. He also has a good feet movement and will be hard to push out of his blocking stance.

These are the current commitments on the offensive side of the ball. The Gators are still pursuing another WR and/or WR/RB (Dillon Baxter) and another offensive lineman.

Stay tuned for part 2, which analyzes the defensive side of the ball later this week.

Follow me on Twitter at @DK_Thompson .

This is part 1 of 3, which will cover the Florida Gators recruiting class. Part 1 will deal with Offense, Part 2 will deal with Defense and Part 3 will deal with Athletes/Special Teams .

You can find the original article here: http://gatorsfirst.com/index.php/fl

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