Inside Access with J.B. Fitzgerald

J.B. Fitzgerald is one of the top linebackers from the state of New Jersey. Fitzgerald, a four-star linebacker from Princeton Junction (N.J.) W.W.P. High School-South Campus is 6-3, 225-pounds and runs in the 4.6 range.

With Michael Mauti (Penn State) Ramon Buchanon and Lerentee McCray (Miami) seemingly off the board the Gators are in need of some big-time backers. Fitzgerald was recently in Gainesville with his parents and walked away with great impressions. Can the Gators make up enough ground on Michigan?

Sunday - 7/1
"It was a slow night tonight I only received a few text messages. Coach Commisong from Boston College sent me a message as well as Coach Lovett from the University of North Carolina. Both sent a text inquiring about what was new with me and what I had been up to. It was a little awkward because I had put out a top-five (Michigan, Florida, Rutgers, Georgia Tech and Iowa) and they were not on the list however I had never officially told them if they were or weren't, so it was probably my fault. Yesterday, I got a chance to speak with my recruiting coach Steve Szabo from University of Michigan. Coach Szabo is also the linebacker coach so it helps a lot in giving me a great feel for the school. Coach Szabo has been recruiting me since January, and since that time we have developed a close relationship and both my parents and I are quite fond of him. The relationship that I have with Coach Szabo definitely plays a large role in my feelings towards the Wolverines."

Monday - 7/2
"Surprisingly, I received no text messages today other than my daily internet message from University of Maryland; however, I did have two calls for interviews. One guy from and another from, both wanting to find out how my recent visits had gone and just get a brief update. Today, I also went to work with my trainer at Parisi's Speed School. My speed is something I really would like to improve so that I am ready for the next level. I am doing everything I can to improve it."

Tuesday - 7/3
"I received interest from a new school today, which was unexpected since it is so far along in the recruiting process, but I received a text from Coach Fulmer of University of Tennessee. I believe it was one that a graduate assistant or another would write because, although it did have my name in the text, it still sounded very informal. I also left today for California to visit some family; it will be nice to get a short vacation in before my team starts conditioning practices on Monday, even though I know I am going to get the 'so have you decided where you're going yet?' question from every family member that I come across while I'm out here. When I got off the plane and turned my phone back on I had about six text messages waiting for me. I had about three messages from Coach Robert Jackson from Rutgers, two from Coach Barrow of the University of Miami and a text from Coach Alamar from Cal."

Wednesday - 7/4
"Holidays are always a big text message day, and the fourth was no different. I believe that I received a text message from at least one coach from each of my top five schools and then some more on top of that. I was really busy with family stuff, so I did not get a chance to respond to very many of them, however, I don't think that the coaches always expect a response anyway.

Thursday - 7/5
"This morning I was woken up to two text messages, one from Coach John Susan from Rutgers giving me some work out tips and another from Coach Comissong from BC asking me what was new. I knew that coach Commisong was texting me to find out where BC stood with me, and so I told him I was kind of leaning to a few other schools and he respected it which really made me feel good because usually when you tell coaches that, they give you a hard time. Later on that evening I went up to Santa Barbara to see my Aunt and Uncle. It went well and I really thought I was going to be able to make it out of their house without having to talk recruiting with them, but I was sadly mistaken. They sat me down and had their way with me by conducting their own interview. On the way home I explained to my sisters (Chantelle 26, Meagan 22) about how although it can be a lot of fun, the recruiting process can be kind of wearing on you, especially if you're a low key kind of person like myself."

Friday - 7/6
"This morning I received a text from Coach Lloyd Carr from University of Michigan, we sent text messages back and forth for a little bit, and I get text from him every couple of weeks. Also got a whole bunch of text messages from Coach Jackson from Rutgers, I think if things went his way during our text conversation, then I would have committed to Rutgers on the spot. However obviously that wasn't the case, I guess it's hard for some coaches to understand your situation because to them it's all pretty black and white, your either committed or you're about to commit, and for me I am neither of those at this point. Following that I showed my sisters all the recent text messages I received from coaches because they had heard from my mom that I get them all the time and they wanted to see them first hand. They were a little impressed and little surprised because even though my sister Meagan had played Division I lacrosse, her recruiting process was nothing like mine."

Saturday - 7/7
"Well, Eva Longoria got married to Tony Parker today so that kind of started my day off on a depressing note, but I got a chance to finally workout for the first time in a few days and my Grandma was also having her annual family party so it started to look up. I was able to speak to my cousin Keith whose son had just finished playing football at UCLA two years ago, about the whole recruiting process; he gave me a lot of good tips but did not try to kill me with information, which was refreshing. There was definitely a large consensus among my family of which school they felt I should select but I will not reveal which school that was. Later that evening I received a text from Coach Greg Schiano from Rutgers, we sent messages back and forth for a little bit just talking about each other's holiday weekends."

Sunday - 7/8
"On the way to the airport this morning I received a text from Coach Lovett from UNC, he had not heard from me in a while and wanted to know what was new with me. I didn't get a chance to respond right away but about an hour later I sent him a text telling him that I was leaning towards some other schools and that UNC was not really in the running anymore. I still have not received a text back from him and I may never, but I figured I needed to let him know and not waste him time and effort.

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