Gators commit to official with Irish

BEAVERTON, Ore. – Four-star safety Chauncey Gardner is committed to Florida, but the cousin of Tarean Folston plans to see Notre Dame this fall.

BEAVERTON, Ore – Safety Chauncey Gardner of Cocoa (Fla.) committed to Florida for a second time in March, but the four-star remains engaged in the recruiting process. The four-star plans to take official visits in the fall, and Notre Dame is in position to receive one.   

“Oh most definitely,” Gardner said. “They were my second or third offer coming up, so seeing them still trying to work on me even though I’m committed to Florida means a lot.

“Out of all schools, Notre Dame and Florida will be the two I know to get official visits.”

The 6-foot, 190-pound defensive back keeps in contact with Notre Dame recruiting assistant Keenan Bailey as well as defensive backs coach Todd Lyght and Florida recruiter Autry Denson.

Gardner, who will compete in The Opening this week, is the cousin of Notre Dame running back Tarean Folston.

“I talk to him every day,” Gardner said. “He tells me I need to come see (Notre Dame) for myself. It doesn’t matter where I go because they’re still going to be on my side because it’s a family thing. Everybody I talk to says I have to come see Notre Dame for myself. The school is great, the atmosphere is great, and the campus, fans and campus life are all great. Their defense did pretty good in the bowl game and they talk a lot about their needs for defensive backs.”

Other programs Gardner put in contention are Auburn and Ohio State.

Gardner has relied heavily on the advice and guidance of his mother throughout his recruitment.

“Mom is the focal point of everything, and I let her take control of everything and she helps me see things clearly,” Gardner said. “Right now, we’re solid with Florida. We’re relaxing and enjoying the Florida life and hoping everything goes as planned.”

Scout ranks Gardner as a four-star prospect and as the No. 6 safety in the Class of 2016.


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