RECRUITING: Florida Looks Strong For Turenne

He is a guy that can come in and be a difference-maker from day one. Woodny Turenne is a junior college cornerback with the height (6-2), speed and instincts that make him one of the most coveted players at any position in the football recruiting class of 2007. The Florida Gators rank high on the favorite's list for this outstanding prospect.

(See Woodny Turenne profile)

Turenne visited the University of Florida last week for the Gators Junior Day and the College of the Sequoias (CA) All-American came away with a favorable impression.

"It went good," the 190-pound Turenne said. "I got there at 10:30 in the morning. It was a good turnout and I enjoyed myself. I felt comfortable around the coaches and the players I met. I met the quarterback Tim Tebow and Reggie Nelson. Reggie is cool, laid back, and relaxed."

Turenne is no stranger to Gainesville. He's somewhat of a legacy to the University of Florida football program.

"Yeah my cousin is Reynaldo Hill (former Gator, now NFL starting corner with the Tennessee Titans)," he said. "We have talked a little bit about the University of Florida. I have been there a couple off times for state track championship tournaments. I was the state runner-up in the 100 meters at the state meet as a senior."

He likes the Gators, but he still wants to get a good look for what's out there before he makes that final commitment.

"I am really interested in them," he said. "At the same time I do want to explore my options and see where things go. The defense kind of fits me good. I just like the bump and run and man to man coverage they use. I really don't know how many official visits I will take, but I will take one to Florida."

If there is one guy he would like to pattern his game after it is all-pro cornerback Champ Bailey of the Denver Broncos. The ex-Georgia Bulldog has made an impression on him with his hard work and determination. Turenne loves how Bailey just makes the game look easy.

"I'd like to play like Champ Bailey," he said. "He is so relaxed and comfortable out there. With his speed he just plays smart. I think I need to improve on being relaxed and play a little smarter."

It has been a meteoric rise for Turenne. Two years ago he was an unknown safety/wide receiver out of Ft. Lauderdale. Now he is a budding superstar and maybe the most sought after cornerback in the country.

"I didn't play corner in high school," he said. "I played safety and receiver. I have improved on my coverage a lot in college. We have some good coaches out in California."

Besides Florida, four other schools have his interest right now. He knows when he will visit the Gators for an official visit.

"I like USC, Ole Miss, Alabama, and Michigan," he said. "I plan on visiting Gainesville on September 30th."

Woodny Turenne just returned to the College of the Sequoias for the start of the summer semester. If this season is anything like last, he will show even more dramatic improvement and that will translate to even more recruiting attention. The Gators will lose at least three of their top four cornerbacks after the 2006 season so bringing in a player like Turenne that's ready to play would really ease their minds.

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