Gators Land World Class Speed

It is worth repeating, head coach Urban Meyer wants to field the fastest team in America. With players like Louis Murphy, Percy Harvin and Chris Rainey all running sub-4.4, he might have it now. Jeff Demps has world-class speed and as a defender, you can do nothing about it but accept it.

Demps, from Groveland (Fla.) South Lake High School is a 5-10, 182-pound three-star running back that can beat you in a variety of ways. A lot of players talk about how fast they are, but Demps shows you how fast he is. At a track meet this past year in Knoxville, Demps ran a blistering 10.25 100m and is currently ranked third in the nation.

"I thought long and hard about the whole recruiting process and both schools and coaches are great but I have decided to attend the University of Florida," Jeff Demps said. "When I went to Florida for my unofficial visits, I interacted well with the teammates. Coach Urban and I also have a good relationship."

The Gator coaching staff is recruiting Demps to come in and play the same sort of role that Percy Harvin plays. Demps is a player that can line up from the slot or tailback positions. He can put an incredible amount of pressure on opposing defenses with his blinding speed and cutting ability.

"Florida builds their offense around speed and getting players the ball into space and that is the type of game plan I feel I will thrive in," he said.

Demps is coming off an amazing junior season in which he totaled 1,761 yards on 170 carries and 21 touchdowns (10.4 per carry). He is a threat to take it to the house on every touch. Demps can outrun anyone to the corner and even if the defender has an incredible angle, it will not matter. Once he gets to the outside and is able to see daylight, it is off to the races, and a race is something that he is used to winning.

If you want to see what true sub-4.4 speed looks like check out his highlight tape. Demps shows acceleration, top end speed, cutting ability and more impressive than all of those is his separation speed.

Demps followed up his junior season with an equally impressive senior season. Demps finished his three-year varsity career at South Lake with 4,727 yards and 58 touchdowns. Demps won national titles in the 100 and 200 meters at the AAU Junior Olympics at the University of Tennessee with times of 10.25 and 10.26, which is one of the fastest ever for a high school athlete from the state of Florida

South Lake coach Walter Banks knows that a player of Demps' caliber doesn't come around often and had plenty to say, including who his game resembles and what he brings on and off the field.

"Jeff is the fastest kid I have ever laid my eyes on and I feel he is one of the best talents in the nation," Banks said. "Jeff brings his leadership and his hard work ethic on the field. Off the field he demonstrates leadership in the classroom and in the weight room. The two players I would compare his game to are Reggie Bush and Devin Hester. Obviously his speed and ability to stick his foot in the ground and change direction without losing any speed is the thing he does best. He also has great vision."

Jeff Demps is the 17th verbal commitment for this years class. Look for the Gators to try and bring in 6-7 more players. Commitments are non-binding until letter of intents are signed on National Signing Day, February 6th.

Questions or comments? Contact's Jason Higdon

Fightin Gators Top Stories