Coach Bill Belichick was once again in the midst of his annual scouting trip through Florida this year when the media caught up with the prospects he was working with. Along the way, the coach made a stop at the University of Miami where he reportedly broke down film with Hurricanes defenders including lineman Allen Bailey, cornerback Brandon Harris, linebacker Colin McCarthy and defensive backs DeMarcus Van Dyke and Ryan Hill.
"He seemed like a cool, laid-back type guy. On TV, you see him all serious all the time," Bailey told ESPNBoston. "It wasn't tense. It was a relaxed atmosphere. Just all football.
"It was no pressure, just meeting and watching film," Bailey added. "It was relaxed and we got to know each other."
Belichick reportedly met with Florida guard/center Mike Pouncey. Belichick enjoys the one-on-one time with players at such meetings, including breaking down film. Last year he selected a trio of Gators - Jermaine Cunningham, Brandon Spikes and Aaron Hernandez - after spending time with them on the Florida campus.
-- Belichick has made Florida a regular part of his scouting itinerary in recent years. Florida has been a particular favorite stop with good friend Urban Meyer coaching the program. Yet despite Meyer's decision to move on, Belichick remained committed to getting a closer look at the Florida players, some with whom he was familiar with from previous trips.
New England selected three Florida players -- all former Gators-- in last year's Draft: LB, Bandon Spikes; DE, Jermaine Cunningham and TE Aaron Hernandez. The year before that USF LB Tyrone McKenzie was selected.
Perhaps it's the success Belichick has had selecting players from& the state of Florida since he's been in charge in New England. Some of the notable Patriot Draft picks from the state of Florida include: Asante Samuel (Central Florida, 2003); Vince Wilfork (Miami, 2004); Chad Jackson (Florida, 2006) and Brandon Meriweather (Miami, 2007).
All told, the Patriots have selected 13 players from colleges in the state of Florida since the 2000 Draft class.
With top prospects like Pouncey, Marcus Gilbert, Will Hill and Ahmad Black at Florida, Jah Reid at Central Florida, Christain Ponder and Rodney Hudson at Florida State, Rob Housler at Florida Atlantic and the assortment of talent at Miami (including Leonard Hankerson), is it any wonder Belichick makes it a point to visit The Sunshine State?
Material from the Sports Xchange was used in this report.
Follow Patriots Insider on Twitter: @PatriotsInsider
Facebook: Patriots Insider
Or Talk about this in the Forums