TELEP: Florida Gators nab a good one in Hodge

Florida Air Academy point guard Walter Hodge is off the board. The 6-footer visited an SEC program last weekend and made his pick.

The Gatorade Player of the Year in the state of Florida is staying put in the SEC. On Monday, Walter Hodge of Florida Air Academy, committed to the Gators.

“He just made up his mind and he says he’s going to Florida,” Aubin Goporo, Hodge’s high school coach said. “That’s where he wants to be.”

Hodge visited the school last weekend and eventually selected them over Auburn. Kansas was involved and discussed a visit but the Jayhawks never offered him a scholarship.

Meanwhile, the Gators used their own guys to help seal the deal. “They took him up there and they let him hang out with the players and to be quite honest, the players sold the program to him,” Goporo said. “He had a good time with the players and the school fit him.”

Hodge was good for a state title and 29 points a game. He’ll find his way into’s final 2006 Top 100 that will be released later this month. After a subpar summer by his standards, Hodge cranked his game up another level was regarded by as the top available point guard in the Class of 2005 this winter.

“He was unbelievable this season. He was the captain of the team and everything we do went through him. He was great on defense and offense and he pushed everybody to go hard. He won every single award.”

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