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Two years ago when C.J. Spiller was playing for a state championship against Pahokee, he didn't really notice the size of The Swamp. He was too busy concentrating on the game at hand on that Saturday morning. The blazing fast running back from Lake Butler (FL) Union County saw the 90,000-seat stadium on the University of Florida campus from a different perspective when he was at the "Friday Night Lights" camp. Click to read in-depth story...
When the lights were turned on and the music blared at the University of Florida's "Friday Night Lights" camp it didn't take much for defensive end Rodney Gnat of Jacksonville Wolfson to imagine what it would be like to come roaring out of the tunnel on game day at The Swamp. As his imagination took over, the entire evening left a lasting impression. Click here to read more...
"It was awesome. The ones on ones was real good. I expected a little more out of the DB's, being that there was supposed to be all these big time guys there. I think some of them and some of the wide receivers are a little overrated."
"They were pretty much saying they still want me to come in and play as a freshman and return kicks. I trust Coach G and Coach Meyer."
"Georgia, Florida, Florida State, LSU and Tennessee is who I'm looking at. Georgia is still my favorite though."
"I didn't do the drills and stuff," said Jermaine Cunningham. "I talked to the coaches a lot though. I like the coaching staff. They've got their stuff together. They're easy to get along with. They're hungry for a National Championship."
Where does Florida currently stand on Cunningham's leader board?
"They're still one of my top schools. My top seven is the same (Undecided)."
Cunningham is interested in seven schools from four separate conferences. He's in the process of planning his official visits now.
Stay tuned to Scout.com for the latest on Jermaine Cunningham right up through signing day 2006.
Hollywood Bob talked to Bryan Thomas today, he couldn't make the trip but badly wanted to be here in Gainesville. He called Mullen and apologized and Mullen told him not to worry.
Jermaine Cunningham was indeed in attendance down in Gainesville this weekend. He may have just shown up on Saturday but he told Matt Day (who works with Scout.com) that he was in Gainesville.
We'll have an update with him shortly.
Tim Tebow says he really enjoyed the camp and it was an opportunity to reunite with several friends he had made on the recruiting circuit, in particular Jamar Hornsby. Click his name for in-depth interview.
"It went good," Asher Allen said. "I got a chance to talk to the coaches. I enjoyed staying down there. I like the look of their stadium. We saw the whole campus. It was real fun."
Allen spent a great deal of time with one coach in particular.
"I really like Coach Drayton (Florida Running Backs Coach). He knows his football. We played cards and did lots of things. He's a good person."
Has Allen planned for any official visits?
"I know I'll take officials to Georgia, LSU, and Florida. I'm not sure about the other two yet."
There is a new school in the mix for Allen.
"I have just added Notre Dame to my list. I like what they're doing up there. My other schools are still on the list. I'm still undecided though."
MARCUS GILBERT: He's moved Florida to the top of his list out of eight schools he is considering, as a result of the camp. Click his name for an in-depth interview...
"I didn't work out down there," said Toryan Smith. "I got to see how the coaches coach. They're tough but have a good relationship with their players. I like how they do things down there."
Smith is remains undecided. He has substituted one school for another on his long list of choices.
"I've replaced Texas with Alabama on my list. That's the only change. I'm still undecided."
Smith is confident his Rome High School team will have success this fall.
"We're getting ready for this championship run. We're working hard this summer. It's my last year and I won't to go out on top. We'll be there at the end. You can bank on that."
Smith has also set his 5th and final official visit.
"I'm going to Florida when they play FSU."
Toryan Smith will certainly have options on signing day. Where he signs remains the question. Stay tuned…
(Bob says...) He was supposed to come in, but his team had a 7 on 7 passing tournament that he forgot about and he couldn't make it.
"I liked the camp a lot. We did a whole bunch of drills and I liked their style of coaching and all of that. I thought I did well but they didn't offer me," Brandon Caleb said.
Caleb spoke to the new staff in Gainesville.
"I talked to Coach Gonzalez. He just told me I did a good job and all."
What was his favorite part of the camp?
"The best part about the whole thing was being on the field and working out with the guys. Seeing the stadium was also pretty cool."
For now, Brandon is still sitting with 8 offers.
"I have offers from Syracuse, Clemson, Virginia, Virginia Tech, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Georgia Tech and Maryland."
Three of those programs stand out the most to Caleb now.
"I like Oklahoma, Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech. They're basically even. I got on the Georgia Tech campus and I liked it there but I haven't seen the others yet so it's hard to compare."
Brandon will get that chance to see the Hokies and the Sooners in the coming weeks.
"When I go back to Virginia I'm taking a visit a Virginia Tech. I'll also take an official after the season. On August 5th I'm taking an unofficial to Oklahoma."
Colin and his Dad arrived back home in Clearwater very late last night. He had to board a flight at Tampa International at 8:00am for Las Vegas to join his AAU basketball team at the showcase. He will be out there all week. He'll give us a call later today for an update.
"It was a good camp with all of the competition. It was pretty cool with the music and everything. I would definitely say it is in the top five among camps that I've been to."
On the Road with Lee Tilley - writes about his trip to Auburn and then the Friday Night Lights camp.
Mark McLeod says "Jarred's Mom said that he is having trouble w/ his cell phone. She said that she has not received an update from Jarred. He is not at home. She did say that she spoke with him last night and that he said everything was really nice. He told her that he would fill her in when he got back home. She said that she will have him call me either tonight or in the AM."
"It was great, I liked it a lot. It was the best campus I have been to so far. It was nothing but positives and I am glad it worked out. Doc told us not to work out, just to show up and see how it is. The stadium stuff under the lights was really different, I don't think any other school has done that. They had a picnic and we went out with the football players at a lake. I would rate the visit a ten, it was really good.
I got a scholarship offer. I still have the eight schools, but Florida is definitely number one. My parents always wanted me to go up there too, they really like that campus. "
"It was nice, I had a really good time. It was very well done and very well planned out.
Saturday, we watched the team work out. We got to see how they do everything. Then we hung out with the coaches and went to a cookout. It was great fun."
"I enjoyed the camp. It was a great experience. I ran a 4.38 in the shuttle and a 4.5 forty. It was exciting competing against this level of competition. I feel confident that I can play with anybody when I get the chance."
"I didn't make it to the camp in Gainesville," Rose said. "Something came up and I wasn't able to make it. I tried to call Coach Hevesy last night and this morning, but I haven't been able to talk to him."
Rose was supposed to go up there with his Dad on Saturday morning.
RODNEY GNAT (from father JOHN GNAT):
"I found the visit very, very informative. I have to be honest with you I am very impressed with Coach Meyer. I will tell you, I told the coach that I had my druthers about Florida, not as an institution, but as an athletic institution. Coach Meyer really changed my opinion last night. I came in with an open mind, but if you would ask me where Florida stood on a list of schools of my opinion, it wouldn't have been very high. Coach Meyer really changed my outlook about the school.
Rodney was told that they were really impressed with him, and that his stock really went up after last night. They told him to go back to school, work really hard, and they will be in touch with him.
From Ryan Jordan - "I just spoke to Brandon Caleb's mom. They're in 2 separate cars driving back to the Atlanta area from Gainesville. She said that he did not get an offer this weekend however. I hope to speak with him here soon..."
JOHN BRANTLEY, JR. says he had a great time and would do it "every week" if he could. Click his name for full story.
"I loved it. Everything, the coaches, the players. Being on the field, under the lights, everything. The competition was alright, but… Jacques couldn't make it, he had something to do. I roomed with Kyle Jackson. "
"Today I went to a strong man competition and then a thing they had at Lake Wauburg, then back to the stadium, we had an ice cream social. Of the receivers, Chad Jackson won the strong man competition. "
"Jarred (Fayson) and I are pretty close now. Tim (Tebow) rode to Gainesville with me."
Hollywood Bob says Johnny was his pick as a darkhorse to get a scholarship offer. It didn't come yet, but he certainly showed that he is capable...
"The camp was awesome and I loved it there. I loved (Wide Receiver Coach) Billy Gonzalez, and he seems real good. I like how he teaches. He is a great coach. I like his style of coaching and he is a good man. He said I was real fast. He liked the way I catch the ball and how quick I was. He liked the way I come off the ball and that I run good routes. He was shocked at how good I was."
"My favorites are Florida, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Louisville, South Carolina, and Florida State. All have offered but Florida and Florida State."
He also mentioned that Reggie Odom didn't make it to the camp.
Ricky Dixon and Jai Eugene actually travelled to Florida together and were seen helping one another during the one on one's by dicussing coverage and technique....
On his impressions of UF:
"Oh man it was great. I loved it. The facilities are nice. They have a great staff. The coaches loved me. I think I could make a big impact down there. It was just great."
On the best part of the entire experience:
"The big ole stadium. Just getting on that field and playing was awesome."
On what Coach Meyer told him:
"Coach Meyer said he wants me a lot and he thinks I can be a big time player for them. I could be a difference maker in their program."
On whether or not this raised the Gators position on his list:
"Florida has always been one of my tops. I've never named a leader but I was just happy to go down there."
On which schools are still in the running:
"USC, Miami, Tennessee, Georgia, Auburn, LSU, Michigan, Oklahoma…They're all still really even."
On his impressions of UF:
"It was nice. The facilities overall were just really good. Either them or Georgia were the best facilities I've seen so far. I really liked the stadium and the weight room at Florida."
On which coaches he talked with:
"I talked to mostly all the coaches. They said they really need receivers and they were really impressed with what I did."
On which schools stand the best chance to sign him:
"I like Florida, Florida State, UCLA and LSU. That's my top 4. My top 2 are LSU and Florida but LSU is probably my favorite school right about now."
On why the Tigers lead:
"It's just so close to home and I'm just mor
KIANTE TRIPP: Kiante Tripp is one of the best big athletes in the state of Georgia this year and the big man traveled south down I-75 to camp at the University of Florida this weekend. How did it go?
"It went good. The one on one's was the best part because of all the good competition. They didn't really have that many offensive linemen but it was still really good," Kiante Tripp said.
The Westlake product spent some time with the Gator coaching staff.
"I talked to Coach Drayton and Coach Meyer. They both said I did good. They said they need me bad because they need defensive ends. They have two seniors leaving and no one left behind them."
Has the visit changed things on his list?
"I've still got Georgia and Florida as the top two. Alabama and Notre Dame are in there also."
It appears the home state Bulldogs have maintained their lead, but Tripp admits that could change.
"Georgia is still my favorite. I've been spending a lot of time with them and I've just now started visiting Florida. Once I get to know the coaches down at Florida they may move up."
Morrice Richardson is a player being hotly pursued by quite a few programs across the country this season. On Friday he chose to take an unofficial visit to one of those schools, the University of Florida. How did it go?
"It went real good. I don't really have a favorite part, it was just all good. Hanging out with the coaches, the players and the food. I liked it all," Morrice Richardson said.
The Atlanta native got to talk with the new head coach in Gainesville.
"I got to talk to Coach Meyer and he just let me know that they still wanted me pretty much. He also told me about their program and what they're trying to do."
Richardson now has a top 4 for his signature.
"I like Oklahoma, LSU, Georgia Tech and Florida. Those are my top 4."
MORE NEW CAMP PHOTOS:
Jarred Fayson and Jamar Hornsby talking it over...