My wife often asks me about this recruiting business: "Is that it? Is the season over?"
She doesn't like the answers. The thought that the recruiting process ever being "over," while refreshing for sure, is wishful thinking.
National Signing Day 2012 hit last Wednesday, and while most people might think that means time to relax, take a vacation and wait for next year, that's not how it works.
In fact, the evaluation process for the 2013 class had started long ago and the three top programs in the state already have commitments for next year's National Signing Day – Feb. 6, if you are making Signing Day party plans.
Florida landed two 2013 commitments the day after Signing Day in Tallahassee Lincoln LB
(6-3, 230) and Jacksonville First Coast LB
(6-3, 220). UF had previous pledges from Crescent City DT
– no relation to the QB or coach -- and also one of the top running backs in the state in short-but-dominant
(5-7, 207) of Winter Haven.
Miami also has four commitments in speedy Orlando Jones ATH
Levonte "Kermit" Whitfield
(5-10,165), Delray Beach Atlantic DT
(6-2, 292), South Plantation RB
(5-1, 180), and South Fort Myers ATH
Not to be left out,
has three 2013 commitments in top-notch athlete
(5-9, 155) of Plantation, DT
(6-5, 286) of Fort Lauderdale University School and Prattville, Ala., High OL
(6-6, 275), from the same high school as 2012 FSU signee DT
But there are 100s more prospects out there in the football hotbed state of Florida, many of whom will start garnering 4- and 5-star ratings as the recruiting services start doling them out. We here at the Sentinel don't put much into star ratings, although it does give a good gauge on what others think of certain prospects and gives recruiting services a basis for determining their team rankings.
We do however, provide our Florida Top 100 and we unveil that today as we kickoff our coverage of the 2013 recruiting season, which actually began for us last Saturday during the Top Recruits Now Combine at Orlando's Barnett Park.
The early honor as the top player in the state is going to likely become somewhat of a consensus as other state rankings are unveiled. Lake City Columbia offensive tackle
already has a 5-star rating by Rivals.com and we will be hard-pressed this year to find a more deserving prospect of the Football State's top rung.
Tunsil, out of the same high school as Florida State's athletic defensive tackle
, is of a similar breed. Sure, he's 6-6, 275 pounds, but, like Jernigan, he has an athletic appearance. Tunsil has a wingspan of arms that you don't see often on an offensive lineman, which is a huge benefit to keeping defensive opponents from sneaking up under the pads and holding out of a referees sight.
He can move his feet, get up field with the best if he's needed in next-level run blocking and he'll stand his ground as a one-man, pass-protection fortress. He's very well rounded for a high school offensive lineman.
Tunsil has 11 offers so far, and of course Florida, Florida State and Miami are already ponied up.
Other players considered for the top spot early on were – ATH
Vernon Hargreaves Jr.
(5-10, 170) of Tampa Wharton, Georgia commit RB
(6-3, 220) of Yulee, RB
of Delray American Heritage (5-10, 200), S
Leon McQuay III
of Seffner Armwood, WR
(6-1, 170) of Tampa Bay Tech, WR
6-1, 185) of Fort Lauderdale University, WR
(6-4, 190) of Jacksonville Bishop Kenny, Daytona Beach Mainland DE
(6-3, 220) and RB
(5-11, 200) of Belle Glade Glades Day, among others.
• Plantation American Heritage QB
(6-5, 220), one of the top pro-style quarterbacks in the state for the 2013 class, will be visiting Arkansas this weekend. So far he has an offer from Central Michigan.
• Winter Garden West Orange juniors CB
were in Hollywood, Fla., this past weekend trying out for the South Florida Express traveling 7-on-7 all-star team. Both players have been selected to the much-ballyhooed squad of stars.
• Former Groveland South Lake LB
, who signed with South Carolina last year out of the 2011 class only to be told the Gamecocks had no room, signed this past week with Middle Tennessee after a half year at Fork Union (Va.) Military. Montgomery said he will play a hybrid saftey/linebacker for the Raiders.
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