Score another one for Jim McElwain’s first full recruiting class. A big one.
Top flight wide receiver Freddie Swain (Citra, FL/North Marion) has committed to Florida. Swain is a consensus four star recruit with an offer list that includes Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Wisconsin, Michigan and USC, and was thought to be selecting between Florida, Miami and USC.
Swain’s physical attributes certainly fall within the range expected at UF: he stands 6’0, 185 lbs. and has run the 40 yard dash in as quick as 4.54. But what’s more impressive to me is his ability to go up and make plays, which is the kind of thing you just can’t teach. He’s an excellent route runner, and able to make quick, crisp cuts, and he combines that with a nose for the football, displaying an excellent ability to highpoint the ball and come down with it, no matter how much traffic surrounds him. Combine his ability to get open with his ability to come down with the ball when he’s not open and you’ve got one of the best wide receivers in this class. Again, this is a big pickup for Florida.
Swain was originally recruited by Randy Shannon at Arkansas, so there was a pre-existing relationship with the Gator coaching staff heading into the season. Shannon then handed off the recruiting duties to tight ends coach Greg Nord, who along with wide receivers coach Kerry Dixon (and of course McElwain) convinced him to become a Gator.
The commitment of Swain gives Florida its fourth wide receiver in the Class of 2016 (along with Rick Wells, Josh Hammond and Isaiah Johnson), and all four are of consensus four star caliber or better. And while Florida’s wide receiver corps is certainly producing more than it has been in a half decade, it’s still not exactly a position of strength, which makes this (and the other three wide receivers) all the more important to land.
So good job, Coach Mac. Now go out and beat Missouri.