Florida target expects Gators to reach national title game in near future

As Jim McElwain tries to rebuild Florida football into a championship program, 1 of his mottos is “recruit daily or die.” Join us here on SEC Country for a daily recap of the latest UF recruiting news , tales from the trail and perspective on what it all means for the Gators. High expectations

UF is off to a fast start in the 2019 recruiting cycle with the nation’s No. 1 class, according to the 247Sports Composite rankings.

One of Florida’s top targets for 2019 is Derick Hunter, a 4-star defensive end from Fort Myers, Fla. Hunter included the Gators in his top 5 last week, along with Florida State, Miami, Iowa State and Oregon.

The 6-foot-5, 245-pound prospect has made multiple visits to Florida and thinks highly of UF coach Jim McElwain.

“I can see Florida playing in the national championship next season,” Hunter said unprompted. “With Coach Mac in the building, I know Florida is in the right hands. I can see things changing with this program. I want to go somewhere I’m going to win, and I know if you go to Florida you’re going to win.”

The Gators are trying to win Hunter’s commitment by doing something no other program has to this point.

“Florida is the only school recruiting me for both sides,” said Hunter, whose primary recruiter is offensive coordinator Doug Nussmeier. “He talks about playing both sides of the ball, tight end and defensive line.

“It really doesn’t matter to me (position wise). I just want to play ball. That’s it. Whatever helps my team win.”

That being said, Hunter is impressed with Florida’s defense. He liked the unit’s aggressiveness and effort in the Orange & Blue Debut.

“It was perfect. I loved the atmosphere and everything. It just feels like I’m home,” Hunter said of his spring game trip.

“The defense stands out for sure. On the defensive line, I can tell the pass rush is way better than what it used to be.”

247Sports ranks Hunter as the nation’s No. 13 defensive end and No. 166 overall prospect in the 2019 class.

Despite a handful of favorites, Hunter admits that Florida and Miami are leading the pack. He said a decision could happen “pretty quick” and plans to enroll early at the school of his choice.McElwain is confident it will be UF.“He told me I’m going to be a Gator,” Hunter said. Florida evaluates QB Nussmeier was in Ohio on Tuesday to evaluate a potential quarterback target. Chase Wolf, a 3-star prospect from Cincinnati, received a visit from Florida’s OC.Wolf holds offers from more than a dozen schools, including South Carolina, but the Gators have yet to pull the trigger. At this time, UF is targeting 5-star quarterbacks Justin Fields (Penn State commit) and Emory Jones (Ohio State commit) as well as former Kentucky pledge Jarren Williams.Another Ohio prospect, 3-star defensive tackle Tyler Bentley, received an offer from the Gators on Tuesday. The 6-foot-3, 295-pound prospect holds more than 20 offers, including Alabama, LSU and Tennessee. Blessed to receive […]