Higdon's Take: Ronald Powell

One of the top if not the top player in all the land is defensive end superstar Ronald Powell. From Moreno Valley (CA) Rancho Verde High School Powell is blessed with the kind of talent most kids dream about.

With great size at 6-4 and 250-pounds, Ronald Powell is athletic enough to play linebacker at the next level with 4.6 speed. Don't expect to see him playing linebacker anytime soon as he once told me, "I am a straight speed rush guy that wants to hit the quarterback."

Powell has made three unofficial visits to Gainesville over the last several months and will take an official visit to Florida in what appears to be mid-January, possibly after the U.S. Army All-America game in San Antonio. There have been talks among those close to Powell that he would have made a public decision by now and could even take a few more officials in addition to Florida such as USC and even California. Would I be worried that one of his close friends Tony Jefferson is set to announce sometime next week and it appears that USC is the frontrunner for his services? If Tony Jefferson announces for Oklahoma or USC it's bad news because he will try and work both Powell and Stills to whichever school has the best shot, SC for Powell or Stills for OU.

The fact that Powell has been to Florida three times on his own dime tells me about all I need to know. Watching him interact with Urban Meyer at Friday Night Lights and you have thought they had known each other for years.

To make matters worse if you are a Gator fan it also appears that wide receiver Kenny Stills will also make his announcement with Tony Jefferson. All of these players from the West Coast are very close especially Powell, Jefferson, Stills, Shaw and Riley. Florida is in the process of making in-home visits with both Stills and Powell this week and those visits will be important for both players. USC is trying to put the full court press on Powell while Bob Stoops and company are trying to put the fullcourt press on Kenny Stills.

It's not as if these players are in the state of Florida they are on the opposite side of the map. Distance has a bigger impact on where kids go than you might imagine regardless of what they say in the public eye. The most interesting part of this is the fact that Tony Jefferson and Kenny Stills are possibly announcing together. Are they that great of friends to do this or are they going to the same school?

One thing is clear if they are going to the same school it will not be the University of Florida. However, having said all of this I firmly believe that both Kenny Stills and Ronald Powell will end up Gators. The above is something to think about as this process draws to a close and remember there is no such thing as a slam dunk in recruiting.

Fightin Gators Top Stories