College football recruiting roundup: Florida, LSU take care of business in front of top recruits

Al Messerschmidt

Florida and LSU impressed in front of top recruiting visitors Saturday during an otherwise quiet weekend.

What a boring, awful weekend of college football. Favorites went 54-2 overall, and most were never in jeopardy of being upset. But boring isn't always awful for recruiting, and the major programs winning certainly helps. Still, there were no major commitments over the weekend from 2014 prospects.

Two SEC programs had major players visiting, and came through over two rebuilding SEC schools.

Florida and Tennessee

The Gators played one of the ugliest games in recent memory against Tennessee, at least through the first half, and lost quarterback Jeff Driskel for the season to a broken ankle. But Tyler Murphy came in, and with the help of perhaps the best defense in the country, Florida dominated Tennessee, ultimately winning by 14.

Florida had a bunch of top recruits on hand, including Jamal Adams and Clifton Garrett, pictured below.

Will the loss of Driskel hurt recruiting? It depends on how well Florida plays with Murphy. The Gators are now 20-9 under Will Muschamp, which is not a great start. However, they are 13-3 in their last 13, and Florida has great recruiters on staff. Does Florida need to overachieve relative to its current situation to land a top-10 class? No. But if it wants a top-five class, that might be necessary.

Tennessee, on the other hand, continues to show that it does not have players. Butch Jones has a rebuilding project on his hands, and not a reloading project. Tennessee is two full elite recruiting classes away from even being considered a contender for the SEC East crown. Think 2015 at the earliest. Jones is recruiting fantastically, however, so if Tennessee is patient with Butch Jones, it should return to the days of consistently finishing about .500 in the SEC. But is that patience a given? Jones was Tennessee's backup to its backup to its backup plan, after a very public search failure. Making a bowl is going to be important to keep Tennessee's recruiting momentum going.


LSU jumped out early to a 21-0 lead over the Auburn Tigers on a rainy night, but Auburn continued to fight, and played hard to the whistle, cutting the final to a 14-point loss.

LSU also had a great group of visitors, and it actually landed a commitment from class of 2017 (yes, 2017) phenom Dylan Moses, a local running back/linebacker. Moses is the player who inspired a lot of articles about when it is too early to offer a player a scholarship, including this one by myself.

The Tigers are the only school, aside from Alabama, with a shot at the No. 1 overall recruiting class.

Big recruiting weekends to come

Look for Alabama to have its first big home recruiting weekend of the year when Ole Miss comes to town. The Tide have been on the road in Atlanta and College Station to open the year, and a home contest against Colorado State isn't exactly an ideal atmosphere for recruits. Ohio State will also host a bunch of stars when the Wisconsin Badgers come to town. Georgia's home test against LSU will be well attended by talented recruits, as will Arkansas' against Texas A&M, Notre Dame's against Oklahoma, and Kentucky's against Florida. USF (hosting Miami) and UCF (hosting South Carolina) will also get a shot to make an impression.

Visit plans are being finalized, so check with SB Nation this Friday to see who will be taking in the various games.


South Carolina lost a commitment from Georgia cornerback recruit Wesley Green, a player I like a lot. Green will still consider South Carolina, but wants to look around. Look for the in-state Georgia Bulldogs to be a major factor in his recruitment.

Arizona State added a nice player in tight end Brenadn Landman Sunday night, following its trouncing at the hands of Stanford. Arizona State has a strong class and should finish with at least a top-40 haul.

Nebraska had a nice bounce-back win after a rough week for head coach Bo Pelini, and Miami (Fla.) Jackson High School quarterback Quinton Flowers enjoyed his visit:

"I watched Taylor Martinez," Flowers said. "He plays just like me. I sat in on the coaches meetings with him and saw how he talked to the coaches and I'm trying to bring it back with me. The atmosphere was a big change. I thought it was a dream when I walked back in the locker room." -- ($)

More from SB Nation:

New Top 25 rankings good for LSU, Oregon

New bowl projections: Baylor to BCS, Bama-Oregon still on

Longform: Bill Connelly’s Big Ten road trip

Spencer Hall reviews the Top 25

Stanford pounds Arizona State, 42-28

Players apparently participate in NCAA protest

Today’s college football news headlines

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