Florida football recruiting: Gators offer 4-star RB in the class of 2025

Calvary's James Simon moves the ball against North Caddo Friday.Shr Northcaddocalvaryfootball 1007 13
Calvary's James Simon moves the ball against North Caddo Friday.Shr Northcaddocalvaryfootball 1007 13 /

Florida football recruiting is looking for some new running backs in their recruiting classes after the decommitment of Chauncey Bowens. With a duo of young backs already on campus, there isn’t a glaring need for another back in the ’24 class.

So, Billy Napier and his staff are turning their sights to the class of 2025 in search of a ball carrier, and they’ve extended an offer to a 4-star back out of Louisiana.

The Gators have offered James Simon, from Calvary Baptist Academy in Shreveport.

On3’s Industry Ranking has Simon as the 145th-best player in the 2025 cycle, the 11th-best running back in his class, and the 4th-best player coming out of Louisiana.

Simon put up some wild numbers in his sophomore season. He had 138 carries for 1005 yards and 22 touchdowns. He was also effective in the passing game, catching nine balls for 122 yards and three more scores.

While Simon isn’t a true burner, he has good speed with a 4.6-40 yard dash.

But what he may lack in breakaway speed he makes up for with his quickness and escapability. James is a nightmare to try and wrap up in open space.

His jump cuts are elite, and he changes direction with ease, leaving defenders lost and confused. It’s no wonder he averaged over seven yards per carry last season with how hard he is to bring down.

Given that he’s from Louisiana, it’s not a surprise that LSU leads per On3’s RPM. The Gators haven’t had Simon on campus yet, given that they offered him 24 hours ago, so it isn’t a surprise that Florida isn’t high on his list yet.

But given the Gators’ heavy reliance on the run game, as well as their projected success on the ground this season, Florida should catch Simon’s eye, and he would be a big piece in the ’25 cycle to pair with Austin Simmons.

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