Spotlight on the #1 Class of 2006

It's official... The Gators landed the #1 recruiting class in the country. Now that the dust has settled, we shine the spotlight on each signee as they begin on their path to ushering a new Meyer Era at the University of Florida. View exclusive videos, insightful stories, and more...


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Class of 2006 Signees Spotlight

Mon Williams, RB -- Williams finished his senior season with 285 carries for 1,650 yards and 17 touchdowns, 415 yards receiving, and two kick returns for touchdowns. He also had nine receptions for 125 yards and two touchdowns. Fumbled seven times, losing six. Horn High ended with a 4-6 record. "I always stay real focused on the field and I stay calm during tight game time situations. When there's like four or five guys on me, I just keep going for more yards and I try to fight them off. I want to work on getting better when there's just one defender on me," he said. "I'm a real humble player as well."

Wondy Pierre-Louis, CB -- Native of Haiti. Has a 37-inch vertical leap and won the Class 4A state titles in the long jump (23-11) and triple jump (48 feet) last season. Had 36 tackles, two fumble recoveries and two interceptions as a junior, returning both of his interceptions for a touchdown. Coach Metzger: "I know one thing, Wondy is an unbelievable human being. Wondy's athletic potential is unlimited. Having played the game for just a few years with his combination of size, speed, and athleticism, the sky is the limit. The style of defense they run is perfect, it isn't mentally taxing as much as physical, and so he is perfect for their scheme."

A.J. Jones, LB -- A terrific hitter and playmaker on the defensive side of the ball, Jones makes plays all over the field. He is an instinctive linebacker that has plenty of time to fill out and grow into the position for the next level. Jones finished his senior year with 116 tackles and six sacks. Offensively, playing mainly wide receiver not running back, he had 380 receiving yards and five touchdowns. Jones led the county with 170 tackles as a junior, and he was named 2nd team all state by adding 16 sacks, 6 forced fumbles 2 for touchdowns. He had 10 catches, 450yds rushing and 6 touchdowns on offense.

Brandon Spikes, LB -- Excellent strongside linebacker with tremendous size and speed combo. A four-year starter, Spikes posted 98 tackles including three sacks, seven interceptions, and forced five fumbles from his linebacker position. As a freshman, Spikes manned the defensive end position, but moved to linebacker before his sophomore season. Coach's Comments: "He's got the intangibles," explained Coach Roy Kirby. "He's got the nose for the ball. He just knows where things are going. He sees it one time and you come back and try to do it again against him he's going to intercept it. And he's a big time hitter."

Marcus Gilbert, OL -- Gilbert has a great frame and very good mobility, he has just begun to scratch his surface, and if he develops a meanstreak, the sky is the limit for him. One of three major recruiting prospects on the O-Line at St. Thomas Aquinas (Sam Young and Daniel Wenger), Gilbert has the ability to play guard or tackle. He'll soon become a three year starter. He doubles as a defensive lineman but projects on offense in college. He also throws the shot put and discus and plays basketball, which helps out tremendously with his agility and overall athletic ability on the football field. He's coming off an outstanding junior season and will be one of the state's best in 2005. His brother, David, plays on the defensive line at Iowa.

Percy Harvin, WR -- Very fast wide receiver that is dangerous in the open field. As a junior, he had 58 catches for 950 yards and 26 rushes for 690 yards. Harvin recorded 32 touchdowns and was named first team all-state at receiver. He also played corner where he had 10 interceptions. Is the #2 rated wide receiver nationally. Harvin: "I just like to make a fool out of people, especially people who talk about how good they are and how they're gonna knock my head off," he said. "Well, all I can say is bring it on. Give it your best try because it just may not be quite as easy as it looks."

Jermaine Cunningham, DE -- Quick as a cat coming off the edge, Cunningham shows great pursuit and intensity, and he will only continue to grow and get stronger as he gets to college. An active defensive end prospect that has a good change of direction and a quick first step. Cunningham has a frame to keep getting bigger. Cunningham is looking forward to pushing his limits and the speedy pass rushing specialist would like to see early playing time. That will require a little bit of a transformation, but Cunningham is looking forward to bulking up for the college game and putting a little more meat and muscle on his 210lb frame before he arrives in Gainesville in July. "I think if I go down there and work hard then I can get some playing time pretty quick. People think I'm going to have to red-shirt but not if I get that weight on quick enough. I'm going to be in that weight room from now until the time I get to Florida."

Tim Tebow, QB -- A huge quarterback with a powerful arm, Tebow is a tremendous all-around athlete that would be being talked about at other positions if it weren't for a big league left arm. His mechanics will need to be refined on the college level, but he has more than enough physical tools. Tebow finished his career with 9,810 passing yards, 3,169 rushing yards, 95 passing touchdowns and 63 rushing touchdowns. He led Nease HS to a state title as a senior. Threw for state-record 4,286 yards and 46 TDs and rushed for 1,266 yards and 24 TDs for an 11-2 team as a junior, was third in voting for Mr. Football. Has been featured in Sports Illustrated's "Faces In The Crowd" feature. Tebow: "I'm a real open-minded person and I'd say one of my greatest strengths is listening to people and learning from them, so that I can get better. I want to work on making my reads quicker and faster, and I want to get the ball into the right hands to make plays. I just want to do everything faster."

Brandon Antwine, DT -- An undersized DT prospect, but one with a passion to play the game. Also has the work ethic, and will push himself. Needs to get stronger so he can handle the trench warfare on the next level. But make no mistake, this kid is a fire hydrant, hard to move, and very athletic. Antwine was named defensive lineman of the year for his league and was selected first team all-district. Garland also tabbed him as their top weightlifter on the squad. Antwine: "I am smart and aggressive. The game moves in slow-motion for me. I know what is going to happen before it does. Before a game happens, I study a copy of the game film my coaches have made for me, and I study it all the time. It helps me get ahead on other peoples' game plans. I've got some great aggressiveness on the field also and it can get other teams scared of me at times too. It's probably because I'm such a big person. I'd like to work on getting my 40x down and use my hands a little more. It will be good to change the game up a little and really get my technique with my hands down."

Jim Barrie, OL -- "They [Florida staff] are real excited about the whole class," Barrie said. "They think I can come in early and maybe contribute. I just want to get my workout in February and do what I can to help the team. They are saying [I will be at] tackle right now and that is where I would like to play. I played left tackle the whole time in California and did pretty well. My attitude is my biggest asset," he said. "I just want to work as hard as I can, so that I can get an opportunity to make a difference in the program."

Trent Pupello, TE -- As a junior, he had 60 tackles and 12 sacks on defense. Pupello is mainly getting looks as a pass-catching tight end. Coach's Comments: Jefferson Wide Receivers' Coach Lane McLaughlin says of Pupello, "You don't want to tackle him. It doesn't matter if we are in pads or if we are in shorts doing seven-on-sevens. Nobody even wants to touch him in shorts. He is big, fast and hard as heck to bring down. He has the nickname of 'Shockey' (former Miami Hurricane and current N.Y. Giants tight end Jeremy Shockey) around here because that is who he reminds people of."

Lawrence Marsh, DT -- The 6-5, 260-pound defensive end from Augusta (GA) Josey is rated three stars by The aggressive play of Florida's defense appeals to him as well and he is looking forward to playing in the system. "Florida plays four down linemen; they allow the defensive linemen to get after the quarterback. All of their defensive players run to the football and I am looking forward to that style of play. I like the rotation that they use for their defensive line and it will give me a chance to get on the field next year." Marsh had an excellent senior season for Josey High School -- he finished the season with 85 tackles and 15 sacks. "The game that stands out for me this season was against Cross Creek High School. I had 3 sacks and force 3 fumbles," he said.

Brandon James, Specialist -- James ran for 900 yards, and eight touchdowns, he also had 400 yards receiving and another eight touchdowns as a junior. He earned first team All-County (St. Johns) and first team All-Conference honors. James:"I think my speed and quickness is my strength. Knowledge is another strength, I always know what's going on at all times. I think I'm also a very good leader." James' role with the Florida Gators will be as a specialist. He will be joining his fellow teammate from St. Augustine High, Jacques Rickerson, this summer with the Florida Gators.

Jacques Rickerson -- Rickerson is an instinctive corner that makes excellent breaks on the ball. He has good hand/eye and can swat the ball away at the last minute. He turns well in his breaks and is fast enough to recover on a double move. Rickerson was all over the field as a junior last season. On offense, he finished the year with four touchdowns receiving and one on the ground. Defensively, he had 62 tackles, eight interceptions, and two defensive touchdowns. He also made a big impact on special teams, scoring two touchdowns and blocking three punts. He was a 2nd team All-State pick on defense following the season. He also averaged 22 PPG in hoops as a junior and was a regional qualifier in the long jump event as a sophomore.

Jarred Fayson, WR/QB -- Fayson has terrific athletic ability. That is his strongest attribute. Fayson is extremely quick and tough in a confined area because of his outstanding speed and quickness. His future will likely be at WR or DB on the next level; Too good of an athlete to keep off the field. Big time deep threat. Fayson is coming off an outstanding junior season that helped put his name on the national recruiting map. He finished the season with 900 yards passing with 11 touchdowns compared to just three interceptions. He added 800 yards and 24 touchdowns on the ground. His 33 total touchdowns put him among the state's leaders. He was a 2nd team All-State pick following the season.

Bryan Thomas, WR/S -- At 6-2, and 192 pounds, Thomas is a hard hitting electrifying safety prospect who can dazzle with the hit or with the ball in his hand. His play on the field made him a top priority for urban Meyer and the Gators, and they were able to land his oral commitment in late November. One of the top wide receiver prospects in the state of Florida, Thomas finished last season with 1,300 yards and 10 touchdowns on offense. He had 93 tackles and three picks at safety and also blocked three kicks and returned three for touchdowns on special teams. He was a state qualifier in the long jump (22-11) as a sophomore and already had a passing SAT score midway through his junior year.

Justin Williams, WR/CB -- Williams is a big athlete that runs well. He has good quickness and hands, and he is dangerous with the ball in his hands. He plays wide receiver and safety, but his immediate future would be at wide receiver. A 2-Way Star for 2004 State Champion Charlton County, Williams helped lead the Indians with 810 yards on 39 catches for 11 touchdowns, and 33 tackles, 5 interceptions (2 returned for touchdowns) and 1 fumble recovery that he returned for a touchdown on defense. Scouting Report: Williams is a big athlete that runs well. He has good quickness and hands, and he is dangerous with the ball in his hands. He plays wide receiver and safety, but his immediate future would be at wide receiver. While he has a good nose for the ball, he would need to improve on his tackling to play safety on the college level, but he has no such drawbacks at the wide receiver position.

Jamar Hornsby -- Hornsby is spectacular on both sides of the ball. Comparing him to two former Sunshine State standouts, he is a more natural receiver than Antonio Cromartie and more physical on defense, and he has the same type of receiving skills as Fred Rouse, but is more physical than him as well. As a junior (9-3 record), he recorded 83 tackles, with ten passes broken up and five interceptions. Also reports 720 receiving yds and nine TDs; Bench: 280/Squat: 390. Hornsby: "I'm very explosive off the ball, and I'm real aggressive on defense. I like to hit. I want to work on catching the ball more with my hands and less with my chest, and just work on my technique on offense and defense."

Derrick Robinson -- Robinson is one of those speed kills guys, a 5-11, 168-pound speed machine who does it all on the football field for former Gator John Clifford, his coach at P.K. Yonge. He's also a brilliant center fielder in baseball, considered one of the nation's top prospects. He has followed the Gators closely this year in both football and baseball. He was was being widely recruited by other schools but he decided to put all the speculation about next year to an end Saturday after he was part of an enthusiastic crowd of 90,104 at The Swamp.

Maurice Hurt, OL -- He maintains his blocks well and gets a good push. He has a good back pedal in pass protection from his tackle spot. He projects as an offensive guard on the college level. He is best in close quarters. He will need to get his pads lower than he's used to playing at tackle. As a junior, Maurice Hurt had 37 pancake blocks and registered 25+ tackles and five sacks on defense. Hurt: "I'm a good leader and I make great decisions on the field. I'm also a hard worker and I don't stop until the whistle blows. I've got one of those don't lose attitudes. I'd like to lose about 15 lbs. And work on my speed and strength."

Terron Sanders -- A big interior line prospect, Sanders could play on either side of the ball on the next level. Sanders was named 2nd Team All-State as a junior. Where will he play for the Gators? "They like me at nose guard. From what I hear they are gradutiang 3 seniors and 2 of them are nose guards and I just feel truly blessed to have them looking at me. I think I can possibly come in and play early." Terron ended up becoming very good friends with fellow DL Corey Hobbs.

Markihe Anderson, CB/WR -- The 5-10, 175-pound lock down corner impressed Meyer and the Florida coaches when he was in Gainesville. In Gator Country's camp overview, he was listed as a sleeper since he was relatively new on the recruiting scene. His low profile is now high profile, and it's ironic that this new Gator always wanted to be at Florida. "Now I have to step up and be a real leader on and off the field," he said. "I'm trying to stay healthy and do the right things so that I can get to Florida in good shape." COACH'S COMMENT: "Markihe ran a 4.47 on grass at the University of Florida, and a 4.51 on grass at the University of Miami, " said Gregory Baloga. "This is a quality athlete who has strength (250 bench) and the ability to get it done on both sides of the ball."

Corey Hobbs, DL -- Hobbs does a great job of getting off of the line of scrimmage, and he shows enough quickness to play defensive tackle on the college level. He is also very good at disengaging himself from blockers to make the play. He will need to improve his pad level to remain on the defensive line in college. Hobbs is a huge lineman that could play on either side of the ball in college. He had what he considers a disappointing junior season when he missed several games with a broken foot early in the year combined with the Hurricanes in Florida in 2004. He still managed to pile up 29 solo tackles and 35+ assists, two forced fumbles, and nine tackles for loss in just four games. Hobbs: "I've got some great tenacity and I never stop. And my lateral quickness has improved a great deal. I want to work on staying lower and getting off the ball a little faster. I could also work on my footwork some too."

Dustin Doe, LB -- Doe recorded 77 tackles including over a dozen for a loss last season as a junior. He projects as a full qualifier. Doe: "I just love to play," he said. "I'm going 100 percent every single play and I know a lot of my opponents arent doing that. Teams ran away from me a lot last season so I had a lot of backside tackles. That's fine with me. I am the type of player on the field that is selfish because I am always trying to make the play," he said. "That is just the way I am. I want to help my team any way possible. If coach tells me to play nose guard I will … if he says tackle, I would play tackle. I am ready to do whatever it takes to get the job done. I am very aggressive. Last year I had a bunch of backside tackles. I like to use my speed, because speed is the key to the ball game. If you have speed, you will be victorious."

Carl Johnson, OL -- One of the biggest and most surprising commitments for the Florida Gators football team in the 2006 recruiting class was all-American Durham (NC) Southern offensive lineman Carl Johnson. The 6-6, 335 pound mammoth is certainly a big need for the Gators. Huge lineman that is light on his feet for his size. Massive offensive lineman who dominated players starting as a sophomore. Coach's Comments: "The kid runs like a running back," Southern coach Gordon Walters said. "He's just got a great future ahead of him."

Chevon Walker, RB -- Walker has good size at 5-11, and 190 pounds. Riverdale Head Coach Scott Jones reports Walker runs the 40-yard dash in 4.4 seconds and 10.5 seconds in 100 meters. Jones says Walker benches 345 pounds, squats 450 and power cleans 265. He has a 3.0 GPA and has already passed the ACT, so he is fully qualified and ready to be a Gator. Coach Jones says Walker is an outstanding athlete who is totally fearless on the football field. "He is not afraid of anything," Jones said. "He will run between the tackles or he will run outside. He likes contact a lot but we are going to work on that so he knows when to go out of bounds, too. We don't want to get him hurt. This will only be his fourth year playing football. He is just a great athlete that could play soccer too. He runs track, of course.

Riley Cooper, WR/CB -- Riley was first team All-State at wide receiver and free safety the past two years. He holds the state record for punt and kick off return yards. He had nine interceptions last season, and he's had 15 interceptions the past two years. He had 128 tackles from his free safety position. On offense, he had 32 receptions for 982 yards with 15 touchdowns. His average yards per catch was a state record (30.6). The Clearwater Central Catholic star has the size (6-4, 205), speed (4.37), vertical (38 inches) and heart to become a force at safety on the defensive side of the ball.

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