Roy Nelson told me that I shouldn't be too surprised at anything I might hear the rest of the day.
"I've talked to a lot of parents," he said. "They're as impressed as I am with Urban Meyer and what's about to happen here. You'll see."
David Nelson's commitment to the Gators lit a fire that kept burning throughout the day, resulting in an impressive haul for Coach Urban Meyer and his staff of assistants in what was the first really big recruiting weekend they have ever hosted at UF. This was a weekend that began with so much promise, and by the time it ended it was like an avalanche of good news. There were five commitments in all --- four of them former commitments to other schools (Nelson from Notre Dame, Dorian Munroe from Florida State, Eric Sledge from South Carolina and Ryan Stamper from Auburn) plus a kicker (Jonathon Phillips) who sneaked in under the radar.
What makes this day all the more impressive is that just days before, there had been talk from one national recruiting guru after another that the Gators would be fortunate to land a few top-rate players. Landing a class that finished in the lower echelons of the Top 25 would be an accomplishment, or at least that's what they were telling us.
One spectacular recruiting weekend later, and suddenly some of the gurus are wondering if it is possible to slow down this runaway recruiting freight train that is the Florida Gators.
It wasn't just five commitments that caused the big buzz. There was plenty of talk that there were other commitments made, some of which won't be made known until national signing day. Matt Hardrick, the giant offensive tackle from Orlando Edgewater told Dave Peters from Scout.com's The Territory website that all-galaxy tailback Antone Smith of Pahokee, another visitor from the weekend, had committed to Florida.
Antone wouldn't say anything about it when I called him but that's Antone. He's the winner of this year's Austin Powers International Man of Mystery Award. While Antone won't give any hints what he's going to do, Hardrick's statement is the first crack in the armor that's been put on Antone to protect him from the intense recruiting pressure that America's Most Elusive is feeling about now.
Hardrick, long considered a lock to FSU, rated the visit a perfect 10. Jeff Owens, a Georgia commit, said it was a 9.5 out of 10. Not bad for a guy who spent part of Saturday swimming ashore in cold Lake Wauberg after his canoe tipped over. Two weeks ago no one would have considered either Hardrick or Owens as Gator possibilities. Now they are much more than just blips on a radar screen.
Kestahn Moore came in from metro-Dallas and he left impressed. Brian Roche came in thinking Irish and left wondering if maybe his thoughts shouldn't have an orange and blue tint. Roche also told Gator Country's Bob Redman that there were quite a few commitments although he wouldn't admit that he was one of them.
Louis Murphy and Kalvin Baker, both commitments long ago, came in for their official visits and when they left, they were more Gator than ever before. They both talked about how amazing it is how the players, assistants and Coach Meyer have already formed a bond.
Put simply, it was indeed an amazing weekend that is perhaps a precursor of things to come. Army All-America linebacker Brian Cushing from New Jersey is in Gainesville today and his family was already wowed by Meyer during an in-home visit a couple of weeks ago. Judging by what happened over the weekend would anyone be surprised if Cush suddenly finds it more compelling to be a Gator than to spend the next four years at the oasis in South Central LA that is known as Southern Cal?
And then there is next weekend when another boatload of superior talent arrives on campus. Is it possible that the recruiting momentum of this weekend will carry over?
"I think the avalanche might have begun," said David Nelson late Sunday night. "A lot of us were talking last (Saturday) night about it. This is the place to be. This is the coach to play for.
"This is a place we can win national championships and we want to be part of it."
Nelson indicated that just because there are some kids with tight lips about now, that doesn't necessarily mean there weren't more than five commitments on Sunday. He also said that there are some potential commitments out there who will be hearing from him and some of the other visitors from this past weekend.
"When I finished talking with the coaches, I talked to a few more guys before we left for home," Nelson said. "I started recruiting the other guys immediately, and I know they're going to be doing the same thing.
"We're going to be calling each other and calling some other guys this week. We're going to tell them come on and join us. Let's do something special here at Florida with Coach Meyer."
Roy Nelson talked about how parents were impressed that Meyer is not a football coach who just talks about football, but he's a man who genuinely cares about every aspect of the lives of the kids who play for him. It convinced him that he had found the right man to coach his son the next four or five years.
"After meeting Coach Meyer and staff decided that if there's a coach in the nation I wanted my boy to play for, Coach Meyer is the one," Roy Nelson told me Sunday morning when he called me after his son had committed to the Gators. "This is a quality man who also is a great football coach.
"He's dedicated to the kids as football players and he's dedicated to them as students. You know when he tells you he wants the best for your kid that he means it. He looks you in the eye and tells you something and you know that you can believe it."
Urban Meyer is telling kids to come to Florida. Be part of something special. Help us build this program into the best in the nation. Be a part of SEC and national championships. Get a quality education. Expand your minds. Expand your horizons. Be the best that you can be.
This isn't some huckster or some con artist trying to sell us a bill of goods. This is as focused a coach as you're ever going to meet. When he was named Florida's coach, I was convinced the Gators had landed someone very special to take over the program. Now, less than a month since he took over the reigns of this football program full-time, I think I may have under-estimated.
This might turn out a whole lot better than I thought. And I had high hopes when it began.