Florida football recruiting is trying to close in on another target in the 2024 class as they made the top five schools for a big-bodied tight end.
Eric Karner from Illinois dropped his top five schools earlier today, and the Gators made the cut.
Karner is from Big Ten country, but he included three SEC schools on his list.
The teams other than the Gators include Texas A&M, Iowa, Michigan State, and Alabama.
Both 247 Sports and ESPN have Karner as a 3-star player, but On3 has him up at a 4-star. And after watching his film, I think I’d side with On3.
Eric has great size at 6’5”-220 but does still have a little more room to add some muscle to his frame before college.
With his slightly lower mass though, comes with some great athleticism. He’s awesome after the catch and is very fluid with the ball in his hands.
He has surprising flexibility and quickness and is able to contort his body in order to evade tacklers.
Karner is a very consistent catcher as well with great hands and the skillset to go attack the ball, not just let it come to him.
Eric is very physical in addition to his fluidity. He’s a very good and violent blocker with the ability to pancake any defender in his way.
Karner also gets snaps all over the defense for Immaculate Conception, with reps at safety, corner, and defensive end. That kind of versatility will help him at the next level and helps keep him physical for run plays.
Eric has an official visit scheduled to come to Gainesville on June 9th, as well as OV’s planned to go see Michigan St and Iowa.
It won’t be easy to go into the heart of Big Ten country and snatch Karner away from those two schools, but Billy Napier and his staff won’t let off.
Karner could be utilized in the Gator offense very well, and be an awesome tool for Napier.
Keep up with Florida football recruiting at Hail Florida Hail.