Patton Disappointed he Missed Gator Game

There were hundreds of big time prospects in the stands to watch the Florida Gators take on the Tennessee Saturday in Florida's 23-13 win over the Vols. One that was missing that was dying to be there was Gator commitment, wide receiver Solomon Patton of Mobile (AL) Murphy HS. Patton is a four-star receiver that could have helped the Gators on Saturday.

Solomon Patton and his Murphy teammates had a game that day and so he couldn't be in The Swamp to see the Gators first SEC contest and try and defend their SEC and national title. Lucky for Patton his coach likes to let his team watch games like the one between Florida and Tennessee.

"We had a game this past Saturday and my coach every Saturday has the TV in there so we can watch college games," Patton said. "My whole team was excited to see it, but I had to leave to go eat. I recorded it and got to see the rest later. They played good, but I felt like they could have played better. I liked to watch it, you know I love watching those Gators play."

Patton saw the Gators struggle a little on offense with a hand full of their receivers out or hurt during the game. It made him realize just what kind of opportunity he has next year when he gets to Gainesville.

"It says a lot, I tell a lot of people that I am excited and ready to get down there knowing that I am going to be able to play at a school like Florida," Patton said regarding the early playing time available for skilled receivers. "That is a school that just won a championship last year. I will get an opportunity to come around and be with some real good coaches that know what they're doing about getting you to the next level and make you a better person overall. I am just excited, it is crazy and I can talk about Florida all day."

Patton talked to Florida receiver coach Billy Gonzales about the game.

"He told me last week that he wished I was there and that I would have actually played against Tennessee if I was down there," Patton said of Gonzales.

Patton also talked to another staff this week following the game.

"It was crazy because I was at work and a number called me from out of town and I answered," he started. "You wouldn't believe who it was?"

Ummmmmm was it Lane Kiffin, I asked? "Yeah," Patton said with a big laugh of disbelief.

"He called me and and Lance Thompson called and they just passed the phone around. I was trying to explain to them I was at work. They were telling me all this mess that they want me to come check it out and they will keep it on the down low and not tell anyone. I just told them that I am already committed to Florida and am sold on Florida and that is where I really want to go."

"I said would come check them out if I wasn't committed, but I am committed. All my feelings are towards Florida, I don't have any thoughts with any other school.

"As soon as I got off the phone I called Coach G," Patton said. "(Gonzales) said, 'Next time just tell them I am fully committed to Florida and that's where I want to play.' Coach Meyer told me, 'Next time Kiffin calls, tell him I said hello'."

Patton laughed at the awkwardness of the situation. Although out of state schools have been on him, LSU has been in contact too, the in-state schools in Alabama have shied away it seems. Auburn did more than that.

"Alabama, I haven't heard from them in a while," Patton said. "Auburn stopped fooling with me. When they came down here there was a big mess. Before I committed, I talked to the coach that recruited down here and he was basically talking trash to me. They told me they have two receivers already committed and they have a third that was committing sometime this week. I didn't worry about it and told my coach...and the (Auburn) assistant and my coach got into it. That assistant said some crazy stuff and my coach doesn't play. I don't talk to them and they don't send any mail or anything."

Patton and his Murphy team is 3-0 and ranked eighth in the state. Lucky for him there are no more Saturday games, so he plans on getting to Gainesville and enjoy The Swamp a few times. After that, he should be enrolled at Florida in January.

"I am going to visit for the Arkansas game and my official visit if for the Florida State game," he said. "I am an early enrollee and everything is going good, I am keeping an A-B average."

He has high ambitions for his first year in college and last Saturday just highlighted those ambitions.

"I just want to gain some weight and get to know my teammates," he said. "I want to get around Coach 'G' and go hard at trying to learn the plays and learn the system because I really want to get some playing time. My big thing is learning the system."

And what about his future teammates? The Gators are putting together a very nice recruiting class. Quarterback Trey Burton and cornerback Jaylen Watkins are two of the highlights of the class that Patton is in constant contact with. He also wants to make sure he isn't the lone receiver threat in what should be a stellar offensive class.

"Trey and Jaylen and I were all texting and they were telling me how crazy it was at the game," Patton said. "I talked to Coach 'G' a couple of weeks ago about Chris Dunkley. I don't know where his mind is about playing there, but he and I have been on a couple of visits together. I know he is a good receiver so he and I would be a good duo."

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