RECRUITING: O.J. Murdock Ready for Visit to UF

Tampa Middleton wide receiver OJ Murdock is one of the most sought after players in the nation for good reason. He has the speed, the moves and runs some of the smoothest routes you'll see on the prep landscape. That's why he is a prime recruiting target of Coach Urban Meyer and the Florida Gators. He will be making his official visit to Gainesville Friday.

"I really started working on running my routes when I was in the tenth grade," said Murdock who has been timed over 100 meters in 10.3 seconds. "I knew that I had to work on those in order to become a more complete player. I want to run the route and separate from the defensive back. It helps if you have the speed."

Mission accomplished. I watched as Murdock extensively worked out the defensive backs at Armwood last season. He served as Middleton's biggest threat in that game, hauling in numerous passes. He is one of the more polished wide receivers in high school football, running routes almost effortlessly. Murdock led Hillsborough County in receiving with 58 receptions for 836 yards.

His abilities have caught the eye of the National Collegiate Coach of the Year, Urban Meyer.

"I like Coach (Urban) Meyer and Coach (Billy) Gonzalez," Murdock stated. "They've been here and at the school to visit me many times. Coach Meyer has a strong personality. They've been very upfront with me. They've already got an understanding of what they think I can bring to the offense. They've broken down a little bit about my role would be there".

The 6-0, 185 All-American is much like Coach Meyer. Both like to compete and have the confidence to take it into the fourth quarter. Meyer backed that up on the field as Utah destroyed one opponent after another on the way to a perfect season. As the Armwood Eagles pulled away from Middleton late in the second half on a couple of Kalvin Bailey touchdowns, I watched as Murdock ran his routes with more precision, more enthusiasm. The true competitor in him was doing everything possible to help his team against a team that many said was the best at any level in the state of Florida.

Because there is no quit in OJ Murdock, he's the kind of player that will fit in well with Meyer, a competitor extraordinaire who believes that teams fight until the final whistle no matter the score.

"I'm really looking forward to my visit this weekend," O.J. Murdock said. "This will be the first visit that my parents will get a chance to look everything over with me. That's important. I think that Andre (Caldwell) will be my host.

"Florida has always been my favorite. I've been a Gator fan. They're number one with me right now. I'm also looking at South Carolina. Those are really the only two schools right now. If I like what I see on my visit to Gainesville this weekend, I'll probably commit to them".

"The (Florida) coaches have shown me that they have several receivers who will be juniors and seniors this year. Several good receivers have committed already. I can see why it could be the best class out there".


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