‘Freakish' McCalister is a Gator

The Florida Gators needed help along the defensive line and have added four straight linemen to their commitment list in the last month. Defensive end / BUCK Alex McCalister is the latest and the 6-6, 220 pounder from Clemmons , North Carolina is described as a freak from his high school coach Adrian Snow. We caught up with coach and player today about his commitment to the University of Florida.

Coach Snow wanted to make sure that first and foremost Alex McCalister will be an asset to the institution at Florida. The kid and family are of the highest caliber.

"He's a great kid and his mom is a wonderful lady," Snow told FightinGators.com. "They are getting into a great situation."

After that, Coach Snow just raved about McCalister's physical ability, something we heard a lot about during camp season when he visited Florida in June and showed what he can do for the Florida staff.

"I don't think Florida will get a better athlete than him," Snow said of McCalister. "I know they will get some good football players, but when it comes to athletic ability, he is one of the more freakish athletes I have ever been around. To have a 4.06 pro-shuttle at 6' 6" and 220 pounds, he also has a vertical jump of 35 inches with no shoes on. He has a 7' 2" wing span. He can long jump over 10'. He just has numbers that are unbelievable. Kids don't show up every day doing that kind of stuff."

At that height and weight, McCalister will have to put some weight and muscle on and with all his hard work Snow knows he will work harder in the weight room.

"He will get bigger, he will weigh as much as I do, but look a lot better than I do," Snow said with a chuckle. "He hasn't worked hard in the weight room yet, he will tell you that."

As for the Gators and their pursuit of McCaliester, Snow says they are top notch recruiters and represented Florida in a great way.

"They did a great job," he said of the Florida staff. "D.J. Durkin does an unbelievable job. Coach Quinn has been aboard the whole time. I talk a lot to Coach Quinn and tell people that he is the defensive coordinator at Florida, but he never makes me feel like I am not."

For McCalister, the finality of publicly committing to the Gators is something he is very happy about.

"It feels great, a big stress reliever," he said. "It was awesome, being around the coaching staff, you know how cool they are. It was just a great experience."

Indeed for McCalister, it seems the coachin staff is what sold the Gators on him and his mom.

"The coaches were the difference," he said. "I could stay and talk with the coaches all day. Coach Durkin is the best recruiter I have seen come this way. My mom is real happy with the choice as well, she really liked them and the school."

Adding to his Durkin comments, McCalister said showed a great deal of trust in Durkin because of the way he does recruit. It is something that has allowed him to get commitments from four of the top 10 prospects in the state of North Carolina in the 2012 class.

"He is always straight forward and will always tell you like it is," McCalister said of the Gators' linebacker coach. "He won't tell you what you want to hear, he tells you the straight truth. He told me if I came to Florida I will have to work real hard, and will play in the best conference. He says I will get bigger and better. He says my best football is ahead of me and I do believe that. "

As for position, it may all depend on how much he fills out, but his athletic ability points to the BUCK position early on. It is a position that will require him at times to line up and rush the passer and at other times drop into coverage or a zone in the defense.

"I am a BUCK linebacker," he said. "That is what I did in high school. I have a huge wing span and just have a lot of fun rushing the quarterback."

And he had a message for Gators' fans.

"I am going to go hard every play," he said emphatically. "I am going to bust my butt every play. I am going to go out and do my thing so we can get a bunch of wins in the next couple of years."


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