"It was nice because it was real close to home," he said. "It felt different than any other college visit, because it was so close to home and [Florida head] coach [Jim] McElwain knows about Ocala. He talks about all the different sports from Ocala and to me it feels like he is part of the family."
UF assistant Greg Nord is Merriweather-Lewis' main recruiter, however, this visit was about communicating with the whole staff, including the new offensive line coach, Brad Davis.
"Their staff stands out," he said. "The OL coach, Brad Davis, he was a a real nice coach. He said college isn't just about sports it's about academics... He said he has a ring for every finger and toe but all of that doesn't mean anything unless you have your grades."
Davis' message was only reinforced when the Vanguard 2020 standout saw his coaching style.
"The way he coaches it's different than any other coaches," he explained. "He will yell at you but then he will take you off to the side and tell you what was really, really wrong. He will tell you to get better, forget about it and have a short term memory."
The top underclassman received a great welcome from the UF coaches on his visit with his family, head coach and teammates, with each coach telling Merriweather-Lewis one thing, "the main thing they said was that I will be a Florida Gator," he said. "In my heart I honestly don't know yet. But right now it is one of my top ideas."
Despite only being a 2020 prospect, Merriweather Lewis' list of suitors is quite impressive. His list of offers includes: Miami, Louisville, North Carolina and Oklahoma State, with Tennessee knocking on the door as well.
He currently has no visits set up, however, he does have a few schools in mind for trips.
"I really want to go to North Carolina," he said." Another one is Alabama and Louisville."
Despite having a few more years before making his decision, Merriweather-Lewis knows exactly what he wants to see from his chosen program.
"Their academic ranking," he stated, "thats the biggest thing because if I don't have an education I am worthless."