Louis Visits, Rules Out Florida

The status of James Louis' verbal commitment to Ohio State has seemed anything but solid in recent weeks, but things have changed in favor of the Buckeyes. Delray Beach (Fla.) Atlantic head coach Andre Thaddies gives the latest on Louis and his relationship with the Gators.

Four-star wide receiver James Louis is no longer considering the University of Florida and is sticking with his verbal commitment to Ohio State, according to head coach Andre Thaddies.

The 5-11, 180-pound wideout from Delray Beach (Fla.) Atlantic initially committed to the Gators during the summer but was asked by the coaches there to keep it a secret, Thaddies said. That led to a switch to his second-favorite team in his recruitment: the Buckeyes.

But the Gators have never stopped recruiting Louis, and this past weekend saw him take a visit to Gainesville to check out the program. The end result was the decision to firmly cross Florida off his list.

"I don't know if you consider that (an official) trip or not because he drove up there with his uncle," Thaddies told BuckeyeSports.com. I talked to him about it and he said he just wanted to go there. They had been calling, but he assured me that he was just going up there with his uncle and that after everything that has happened he knows that that's really not an option."

Asked if that meant that Florida was no longer in play for Louis' services, Thaddies said, "That's what he said to me yesterday."

Thaddies said the situation has been hard on Louis since first giving his commitment to the Gators. In an effort to help him out, Thaddies had former OSU standout and former Atlantic assistant coach Keith Byars give Louis a call Monday night to talk about his decision.

One night later while at a basketball game, Thaddies said he had Louis shut his cell phone off after he started suffering a migraine from the stress caused by the messages he was getting.

Florida's most recent pitch is that it was former wide receivers coach Billy Gonzales who did not return Louis' calls after his commitment and not his replacement, Zach Azzanni.

"They insinuated that the whole mishap was the effect of the other coach who is not there (now)," Thaddies said. "I told that coach that is not true because I spoke to (head coach) Urban (Meyer) myself and it was him who said to hold off."

Regarding Meyer's future, Thaddies said he has heard that he will be back "for all intents and purposes" this summer from a leave of absence taken at the conclusion of the 2009 season.

As a senior, Louis caught 39 passes for 661 yards and nine touchdowns.

Coaches are passing through the doors at Atlantic on a daily basis, Thaddies said, but most are not there to see Louis.

"Florida came on Tuesday when we came back to school but it's mainly just Ohio State," the coach said. "Nobody else is coming to see James. They're coming to see the juniors now."

Buckeye Sports Top Stories