A lot can change in a short time span when it comes to recruiting in college football. Florida entered the weekend with a 2024 class that landed well outside the top 20 of the 247Sports Team Composite rankings. To make matters worse, Austin Simmons, a four-star quarterback in the Class of 2025,on June 17.
All of this came a week after in-state running back Chauncey Bowens flipped his commitment from the Gators to top rival Georgia while on an official visit to Athens. To say Florida fans were becoming restless would be an understatement. Yet, shortly after Simmons made his decision, four-star tight end Amir Jackson committed to the Gators. And then another top-250 recruit joined Jackson in pledging to Florida. And another.
In all, six prospects committed to Florida in a three-day span. It took less than 72 hours for Florida's class to rocket more than 15 spots all the way up to No. 5 in 247Sports' national recruiting rankings, leapfrogging the likes of Clemson, Oregon, Penn State and LSU in the process.
There is not a team hotter than Florida in the recruiting world right now. Here is how it went from treading water to emerging as one of the nation's top recruiting programs within the span of a week:
Pair of OL recruits get the ball rolling
Florida's ridiculous run started on June 12 with the commitment of three-star offensive lineman Mike Williams. A former member of South Carolina's class, the Upper Marlboro, Maryland, product backed out of his Gamecocks pledge in late May and made an official visit to Florida's campus over the weekend of June 9-11.
Two days later, on June 14, German recruit Noel Portnjagin committed to Florida after earning an offer at camp. Portnjagin also participated in camps at Auburn, South Carolina and Liberty, earning offers from all three before deciding on Florida.
Big official visit weekend pays off
Simmons flipped to Ole Miss on June 17, but the Gators responded in a huge way. Jackson, the No. 16 athlete on 247Sports' rankings, committed to Florida over the likes of Tennessee, Miami and Auburn. A few hours later, top-100 defensive lineman Amaris Williams pledged to the Gators in the middle of his first visit to Gainesville.
Another defensive lineman in four-star Nasir Johnson followed in Williams' footsteps a few minutes later. The 6-foot-5, 300-pound product from Dublin, Georgia, holds offers from 17 programs and chose the Gators over Florida State and South Carolina.
Then, four-star linebacker Aaron Chiles committed to cap off the night. Michigan was considered the frontrunner for Chiles, according to the 247Sports Crystal Ball predictions, before the Gators picked up steam. Florida linebackers coach Jay Bateman was the lead recruiter for Williams, Johnson and Chiles. He rose to second in 247Sports' Recruiter Rankings on Saturday.
Gators start Monday with a bang
Sunday was quiet on the recruiting front, but it did not take long for Florida to make headlines again Monday morning. At 11 a.m. ET, mammoth defensive lineman Michai Boireau -- fresh off an official visit to Georgia -- chose the Gators over the Bulldogs. Measuring in at 6-foot-5 and 370 pounds as a rising high school senior, Boireau has the makings of a dominant nose tackle at the collegiate level.
A couple hours later, Florida beat LSU and NC State for three-star offensive lineman Marcus Mascoll, whose commitment officially gave Florida the fifth spot in the 247Sports Team rankings. The Gators are just four points behind Notre Dame for the No. 4 spot, and they are trending for three-star cornerback Teddy Foster fresh off his official visit to Gainesville.
With all the dust settled, Florida has 15 prospects in its 2024 class with an average recruit ranking of 92.39. Florida is one of just three schools with 15 commits and an average rating per prospect above 92, trailing behind Georgia and Ohio State.