Friday Night Notes: Florida Gators climbing, top '24 recruit makes his case, plus more

Friday Night Notes: Florida Gators climbing, top '24 recruit makes his case, plus more

Football

Friday Night Notes: Florida Gators climbing, top '24 recruit makes his case, plus more

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USA TODAY High School Sports‘ Friday Night Notes is a weekly high school football recruiting recap that looks at the latest news from around the country—from the Class of 2023 to ’24 and beyond.

Last week in the recruiting landscape, the biggest riser was Texas, which scored a commitment from top-two running back recruit Cedric Baxter Jr. This week, the biggest beneficiaries of the news cycle were the Florida Gators, who had a very strong run of recruiting.

Over the last several days, Florida’s defense has scored commitments from three of ESPN’s top 300 recruits.

The most recent addition to the pool is Woodward Academy (Ga.) linebacker Myles Graham, who is the son of former Florida and NFL running back Earnest Graham. Graham (6-foot-1, 212 pounds) is a four-star recruit who is composite-ranked No. 2 among linebackers and No. 52 overall in the nation.

Hale McGranihan, 247Sports

Florida also got commitments from two highly ranked defensive tackles from the 2023 class: Kelby Collins from Gardendale (Ala.) and Will Norman from IMG Academy (Fla.). Collins posted 16 sacks last season and is their highest-ranked recruit among Seniors.

Together, these two recruits helped push the Gators up three spots from No. 13 to No. 10 in 247Sports’ composite team rankings.

Billy Napier might also be in a position to snap up another top 2024 recruit who just changed his mind about his college commitment…

Notre Dame loses commitment from DE Keon Keeley

Andrew Ivins, 247Sports

“Nothing is a line. Everything everywhere is always moving forever.”

So said Roy family patriarch Logan in the most recent season of HBO’s “Succession.” Notre Dame can certainly attest to that truth when it comes to the restless world of recruiting right about now.

The Fighting Irish earned a commitment from Berkeley Prep (Fla.) defensive end Keon Keeley back in June of 2021, only to see him change course and decommit in a message he shared on social media Wednesday.

Keeley (6-foot-6, 242 pounds) is the top EDGE recruit in the class of 2023 and is ranked No. 24 overall.

While he hasn’t made his next move public, Keeley did visit Alabama in July, and they are now the favorites to get him. Florida State, Arizona and Florida might also be in the mix for Keeley.

Mike Matthews makes his case

Steve Wiltfong, 247Sports

The new football season got off to a roaring-hot start for the top recruit of the class of 2024. Lilburn (Ga.) athlete Mike Matthews is one of the best two-way players in the country and proved it on Wednesday night, making an impact at both wide receiver and safety – per Andrew Ivins at 247Sports.

“Matthews finished the night with six catches for 111 yards and two touchdowns on offense. That included a 57-yard gain early in the second quarter. The junior also picked off a pass in the driving rain while working over the top as a safety for the Panthers.”

Matthews (6-foot-1, 180 pounds) is ranked No. 21 nationally as well as the third-highest athlete.

There’s some strong competition brewing to get his commitment and Matthews has 28 offers on the table already. Clemson, Georgia and Notre Dame are reported to be among the most-interested schools.

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