Slowly but surely, Billy Napier and Florida are beefing up their 2023 recruiting class. And the latest addition to that class- defensive end Isaiah Nixon- comes at the expense of another school within the state.
The month of June has been a busy one for Isaiah Nixon. On June 3rd, Nixon- who was then committed to Central Florida- visited UCF. The following weekend, Nixon visited Florida. On Monday- ten days after his visit to Florida- Nixon decommitted from UCF, saying that “ultimately, it was a decision that needed to be made.” And then today, he announced that he was committing to Florida, thus completing the flip from Central Florida.
The primary inclination some Gator fans may have is to throw some shade toward Central Florida fans. You know. The “You see, this is why Florida and Central Florida are not on the same level” variant of trash talk. While that’s all well and good, though- and make no mistake, yours truly will definitely participate in that- Florida got more than a bragging right over Central Florida. Florida got a legitimate pass rusher.
The first thing Gator fans should know about Isaiah Nixon- a consensus four-star prospect- is his five-star offer list. Among the schools to offer Nixon: Alabama, Georgia, Auburn, Oklahoma, USC, LSU, Miami, Penn State, Utah, and many, many more.
Then there’s the matter of his tape, which validates that offer list. As it stands right now, he can blow by many offensive linemen with pure speed. He’s very good in pursuit and he loves contact; there are a multitude of rather violent tackles in the backfield on that hudl tape. He shows an excellent ability to make plays in the open field, a must in the SEC. And scouts say that he doesn’t run himself out of plays, remains disciplined, and plays within himself.
The short-range explosive burst he brings will need to be complemented with some SEC-level pass rush moves, but those are all teachable. His primary recruiter, Sean Spencer, is an excellent teacher, and will no doubt work with him on that when he gets to Gainesville. He’s also a little small for a defensive end, but still has room- and time- to grow into his frame. When he develops his pass rush moves and bulks up, he’s going to be nothing short of terrifying.
The addition of Isaiah Nixon gives Florida seven commitments in the Class of 2023.