GAINESVILLE -- The recruits are rolling in now.
University of Florida football coach Urban Meyer received and accepted his 17th public commitment on Monday when Neiron Ball of Jackson (Ga.) High committed to the Gators. Ball (6-4, 200 pounds) ran a sub 4.5 in the 40-yard dash at Florida's Friday Night Lights. YOUTUBE LINK. He chose Florida over a host of schools including Auburn, UGA, Alabama, LSU and Oregon.
Ball's defensive statistics from 2008 are absurd. He had 104 tackles, 35 tackles for loss, 19 sacks and seven forced fumbles as a junior.
[PICTURED, A Ball-er.]
Ball is rated a three-star recruit by Rivals.com and his brother, Neland, plays for the Georgia Bulldogs. (Talk about a family torn.)
Ball is the Gators' first commitment for the class of 2010 to be projected as a defensive end in college. Florida has offered several other defensive ends, including two players from Miami-Dade, Corey Lemonier of Hialeah and Lynden Trail of Miami Booker T. Washington. Owamagbe Odighizuwa of Portland, Ore., rated as the No.2 defensive end in the nation, is also high on the Gators, according to reports. Another highly rated defensive end from the West Coast, Ronald Powell of Moreno Valley, Cali., is also being recruited by the Gators.
Oral commitments are non-binding and nothing will be official until National Signing Day in February, but Florida's class of 2010 is shaping up to be one of the best in the country, according to Rivals.com. The Gators already have more commitments for 2010 than UF signed in 2009.
Other than Lemonier, Trail, Odighizuwa and Powell, here are some other names on UF's recruiting wish list: receivers Ivan McCartney (Miramar) and Chris Dunkley (Pahokee), offensive linemen Brandon Linder (Fort Lauderdale STA), Chaz Green (Tampa Catholic) and Seantrel Henderson (St. Paul, Minn.), inside linebacker Jeff Luc (Port St. Lucie Treasure Coast), cornerbacks Lamarcus Joyner and Cody Riggs (Fort Lauderdale STA) and athlete Christian Green (Tampa Catholic).
Assuming UF has eight scholarships left to offer (the maximum allowed per year by the NCAA is 25), who should Meyer and his staff make as a priority?