Five-star wide receiver Stefon Diggs made his commitment announcement Friday night. The decision came down to four schools: Auburn, Florida, Maryland and Ohio State. All signs were pointing to a Maryland decision since Diggs’ announcement took place in a Maryland bar – a popular location that hosts the Terrapins’ coaches’ radio shows – that was packed full of Terps’ fans. Although Maryland became more and more likely as the decision drew near, the Gators were, for the most part, considered the heavy favorites in receiving a commitment from Diggs. A Florida commitment from Diggs was thought to be coming when the receiver referred to the Gators as “we” and when he tweeted about dreaming of playing in The Swamp. However, for the Gators, that dream was not meant to be; Diggs signed with Maryland.
Although the failure of Florida to secure commitments from Diggs, Nelson Agholor, Tracy Howard and several other uncommitted recruits makes it hard to think of it as a positive recruiting cycle, it is important to acknowledge the Gators brought in an extremely solid top-five recruiting class, and a fairly large one at that. With 23 signed recruits, Florida addressed the main concern: depth. One must come to realize one recruit, such as Diggs, does not make or break a school. How has Alabama done since they lost out on Tim Tebow? Two NCAA championships. (This rule does not apply to Cameron Newton.)
Gators’ fans, keep your heads up. The Gators will look to recruit in a state packed with skill position players all over the recruiting board. For example, another positive is that Florida appears to be establishing a pipeline in the heart of Seminole land at Lincoln High School in Tallahassee with the help of former Gator great Jacquez Green.
For the Gators, they now look forward to a new season starting with spring practice. Recruiting is probably over for this cycle, but for 2013, it has already begun.
Stay classy Gainesville, and remember it’s great to be a Gator!