Merrick ready for Florida camp

New Smyrna Beach (Fla.) offensive guard Jalen Merrick was a fast riser in the college scouting business this past spring. The 6-foot-4, 310 pound Merrick is a masher of an offensive lineman that hasn't been building his craft for very long. He's only had one full season of football under his belt and already has 30+ college scholarship football offers. He visits Gainesville on Saturday.

The University of Florida is still in a big crunch when it comes to numbers on the offensive line. They need to sign five prospects in the 2015 class and are busy combing the country for the best fits.

They have designated one of those fits as Jalen Merrick and Merrick likes what he sees in Florida so far.

"Yes, (I have)very high interest (in Florida, ever since my first visit," he said of a visit he took this past spring.

That interest has now pushed him to visit the Gators Saturday for a skills camp that he will take part in,. For Merrick, it is a chance to gauge the program a little more and see what it is like to be coached by offensive line coach Mike Summers.

"Yes, I am coming to the camp," Merrick said. "It's a chance to see how Coach Summers and staff coach and to get better. I haven't played football long, so every bit helps."

Merrick has only played football for a little over a year now. The 2013 season was his first real competition as he spent most of his life wishing to be a star on the hard wood. That hasn't stopped over 30 programs offering him a scholarship.

"Last spring was my first time on the field," he said. "It's been a little over a year now. I've been a basketball player my whole life and have a lot of upside and ability. I just lack the technique and experience.

Merrick says he hasn't really grown up a fan of any program because he was always a basketball fan. He does know what he is looking for outside of the coaching when he shows up on Saturday.

"I always like to see who comes to the camps and their feel for Florida as well," he said. "I'm not sure who is going to be there, but I am sure there is going to be plenty."

We will be following Merrick closely and hope to have an update on him soon after leaving camp on Saturday.

Fightin Gators Top Stories