Chat with Derek Tyson
Welcome to GatorNation! On Wednesday, writer Derek Tyson stops by to chat about everything Florida.
Tyson joined ESPN.com in 2011. He worked as a football and recruiting analyst for GatorCountry.com before joining ESPN, and he currently resides in Gainesville, Fla.
Send your questions now and join Tyson Wednesday at noon ET!
Derek Tyson (12:00 PM)
Welcome to GatorNation's first recruiting chat. We will be doing one of these every Wednesday until signing day on February 1. I'll get to as many questions as I can today. Here we go....
Mike (Longwood, FL)
Derek, With the pick up of Brent Pease at OC, are there any recievers that may have not been interested in UF that could be interested now? Thanks!
Derek Tyson (12:03 PM)
Unfortunately for Florida there aren't many big-time receivers in this years class. So it's unlikely there will be a big surprise at the end. Florida is getting a visit from Arkansas WR commit Courtney Gardner on Jan. 20 and he told me last night that he's heard great things about Pease. His visit could go a long way in potentially getting him to switch. Also keep an eye on Auburn WR commit Ja'Quay Williams, Florida is still pursuing him and he still might visit this month. Obviously Stefon Diggs and Nelson Agholor are the big fish, and I still think the Gators have a chance to land both prospects.
Mark (Fuquay Varina, NC)
Are there any other backs that Florida has a decent shot at other than Matt Jones to replace Rainey & Demps? Seems like they are not going to have a real play maker at that spot for a while.
Derek Tyson (12:07 PM)
At this time, there aren't really any other backs Florida is interested in. Now with Brent Pease being named coordinator that could change at any time. With Mike Gillislee, Mack Brown, Hunter Joyer and Trey Burton already on the roster, there are enough bodies on the roster for next year. You are right there aren't many playmakers from that group. But if you add a guy like Stefon Diggs or Nelson Agholor, it will allow Pease to be creative in the running game as both of those guys have carried the ball a lot in high school.
Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)
What Florida Gator will be selected in the 2012 NFL Draft?
Derek Tyson (12:09 PM)
Jeff Demps and Chris Rainey are the most likely candidates. I woulnd't be surprised to see John Brantley or Deonte Thompson go in a later round because of how they will perform at pro day.
Matthew Ellis (Orlando)
Derek, I was just wondering with the loss of McCord, Jenkins, and now JHC talking "big" about UGA, who do we go after now to top that D-line off? Does Fowler make the jump, you think, or no? Also, wht's the word on Wes and Maryland?
Derek Tyson (12:13 PM)
Jordan Jenkins was a big loss for Florida,but they are still in on several prospects. Florida still has a good shot with Harvey-Clemons. DE/DT Darius Hamilton will be taking an unofficial visit to UF this month with his mom. DE Alex McCalister from N.C. is visiting UF this weekend and will be announcing his decision on Tuesday. Florida has a great shot with McCalister. Dante Fowler is still a mystery. He says he is firmly committed to FSU, but will still visit UF. He is one to watch for a signing day flip. I'm not predicting it happens, but it's possible.
Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)
Who do you think is the Best Florida Gator that is playing in the NFL Right Now?
Derek Tyson (12:17 PM)
Hmm, that's a good question. Percy Harvin or Aaron Hernandez are the two best skilled players in my opinion. I think overall though Maurkice Pouncey is probably the best overall player that Florida has in the NFL.
dw (copperas cove tx)
will the gators get back in the running for DGB with the new OC
Derek Tyson (12:22 PM)
No, I believe it's too late in the process for the Gators to get back in on DGB, but they still have a great shot with Nelson Agholor and Stefon Diggs.
Michael (Ocean City, MD)
Huge Gator Fan From MD, How excited should GatorNation be about Brent Pease. Is he the answer we needed for success?
Derek Tyson (12:24 PM)
I think this was a big hire for Will Muschamp. He has called plays in the SEC before and he's had a chance to learn from Chris Petersen at Boise State. There is a reason Alabama and Florida both wanted him.
GatorT (Fleming Island, FL)
What do think about our chances with Tracey Howard? How many DB's do you think we will take?
Derek Tyson (12:25 PM)
I think Florida has a great chance at landing Howard. Howard has named LSU and Florida as his top two schools. If I'm a Florida fan, the only thing that would worry me is that LSU will get Howard's last visit. In the end though, I think he chooses to go to UF.
do you think nelson agholor is leaning towards usc or florida?
Derek Tyson (12:27 PM)
I know Agholor really does like USC. With Florida naming Brent Pease the new OC, I think this will certainly help Florida's chances with Agholor. USC defensive coordinator Monty Kiffin has a good relationship with Berkeley's head coach Dominick Caio, which could also play a factor. Right now I think it's neck and neck with USC and Florida.
With Pease now in place, is there a chance he and Muschamp try again to get Mike Davis to reconsider his commitment and come back to the Gators?
Derek Tyson (12:28 PM)
No, I believe that ship has sailed. Both Davis and Florida have moved on.
Mike (St. Pete)
Any other news on Avery Young? He was a Gator lean early in the process but that has cooled off
Derek Tyson (12:30 PM)
I think Young see's more of an opportunity to play early at Auburn. Young wants to play left tackle and D.J. Humphries looked like a future first round draft pick in the Army game the other day. He won't come out and say it, but I believe Young likes Auburn, Florida and Georgia in that order.
Mike (Longwood, FL)
Derek, I heard that all of the EEs successfully moved in at UF this week except for Q. Williams. Is there any concern that he will decommitt or is it just eligiblity problems at the moment?
Derek Tyson (12:31 PM)
No I don't think there is a concern that Quinteze Williams will decommit. It's a transcript issue that they are trying to get resolved. If it doesn't get resolved in time, he is expected to enroll in the fall.
Which of the current QB's do you think best fits with what Pease likes to do on offense?
Derek Tyson (12:33 PM)
That's hard to say right now. I think Jeff Driskel and Jacoby Brissett are very talented players with a lot of potential. I think we will get a more clear view of the quarterback situation after spring practices have concluded.
GatorT (Fleming Island, FL)
Do you think the addition of Pease at OC will help Kent Taylor reaffirms Taylor's committment to Florida? It has been reported that he likes to use a lot of two TE sets and use a lot of motion.
Derek Tyson (12:35 PM)
Yes, I traded texts with Kent Taylor last night. Taylor told me that he thinks Pease is a "great hire" and that he would likely not take anymore visits.
Cooter (Hog Town)
How much of a shot do you think the Gators have at Darius Hamilton? Bringing his mom down has to be a good sign...
Derek Tyson (12:37 PM)
It's a great sign if you are a Florida fan. To pay his own way down with his mom should tell you just how much interest he has in Florida. It will still be tough to pull him from Rutgers, but I think Florida is in good position with Hamilton.
What do you know about Pease's recruiting skills?
Derek Tyson (12:40 PM)
It's hard to really gauge his recruiting skills. He has had stops at Kentucky, Baylor and Boise State. None of those schools are known for recruiting many big-time players. This will be the first time he's worked at a nationally recognized program in a recruiting hot bed. With Diggs and Agholor still on the board, we will find out very soon how good his recruiting skills are.
Hassan Baber (Gainesville FL)
Derek, you do a great job covering the Florida Gators. Thanks for all your hard work. In you opinion what is your opinion on us signing any of the following... Diggs, Tracy Howard, Josh Harvey- Clemons, Agholor, Dante Fowler Jr, Darius Hamilton, Leonard Willliams and I think like 2 years ago when Sharif Floyd surprised the recruiting nation by picking Florida, do you see Eddie Goldman pulling off anything like that and sign with Florida?
Derek Tyson (12:43 PM)
First of all thank you. In my opinion of the seven players you named I think Florida could land as many as five or even six of those guys. Every player you named has Florid at or near the top of their list. They are positioned to make a run for the No. 1 class. Yes, it's possible that they miss out on some of those guys too, but overall I believe this will be a very strong recruiting class. And no, I don't think there is any chance with Goldman.
Matt (Jacksonville, Florida)
I have read that a few of Florida's prospects could contribute immediately, my question is do any have the potential to come in and be difference makers right away ex. Julio Jones, Marcus Lattimore, Joe Haden, Janoris Jenkins etc.
Derek Tyson (12:47 PM)
Of the committed players, I don't believe there is a guy that will make that huge impact like the guys you mentioned. I do however believe a guy like Brian Poole will come in and play in the nickel defense right away because of how physical he is at the line of scrimmage. I also think TE Colin Thompson will have a big impact on the run game from day one. D.J. Humphries is still undersized, but if he can get to about 285 before fall, he will see the field early. He's just too talented to keep off the field. I also think Jonathan Bullard will get early playing time, but it is very difficult for defensive linemen to have a lot of success early in the SEC.
Raymond wallace (Yonkers Ny 10701)
die heart gator fan my queston is do you think the gators will land tracy howard and stefon diggs
Derek Tyson (12:49 PM)
I think they have an excellent shot to land both. Howard likes LSU and Florida a lot and Diggs remains open, but Florida definitely has a chance to land both players.
If you had to make a guess of the 2013 RBs, which two does Florida value most? and do they land them?
Derek Tyson (12:51 PM)
Greg Bryant and Adam Lane are the two names I keep hearing about for Florida. I've seen a lot of good backs play in person over the last two years, but Greg Bryant was the most impressive back I've seen. Obviously Kelvin Taylor, Ryan Green, Tarean Folston, and UGA commit Derrick Henry are also great backs, but I think Florida will target Bryant and Lane early on.
Nate (Chicago )
Are there any other players besides Fowler you could see or think there is a chance of making the flip on NSD or anytime before?
Derek Tyson (12:52 PM)
The two players I would keep an eye on are Auburn WR commit Ja'Quay Williams and Arkansas WR commit Courtney Gardner. Florida has a chance at both.
what is florida big need still
Derek Tyson (12:54 PM)
WR, Buck and one more OL is what Florida needs. They also need a RB, but that just might not happen in this class because of a lack of good backs this year.
Goldengator (Charlotte, NC)
How many will be in this class? 25-27-29?
Derek Tyson (12:54 PM)
I see this class ending with 25-27 players in it.
We will be thin at QB, particularly if the loser of the starting battle transfers. What 2013 QB's are on our radar?
Derek Tyson (12:58 PM)
UGA QB commit Brice Ramsey, Eddie Printz and Kevin Olsen from NJ are just a few of the QB prospects for 2013. With Pease now in place as the OC, it will be interesting to see who he will no go after at QB for next year.
Derek Tyson (1:00 PM)
Thanks for all the good questions guys. Remember I will do this every Wednesday until signing day on February 1. If your question didn't get answered please feel free to go on the GatorNation Chompions Club message board and ask it there. I will get to it as soon as possible. Thanks and enjoy the rest of your week!