GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- The Gators continued their recruiting hot streak, as ESPN 300 defensive end Jordan Sherit (Tampa, Fla./Hillsborough) verbally committed to Florida on Saturday after visiting for UF's Friday Night Lights camp. The 6-foot-4, 238-pound athlete chose the Gators over offers from Florida State, Notre Dame, Stanford and many more.
Sherit, ranked a four-star player, said it was a difficult decision, but in the end, he chose the school that made him feel the most comfortable.
"First of all I want to say this was a very tough decision for me," Sherit said. "The hardest thing for me is when you build relationships with schools like USF and Miami in the beginning and now you have to go away from that. I liked the academics at Stanford, Notre Dame and Vanderbilt. But when it came down to it, it was the family environment I felt at the University of Florida. I felt 100 percent comfortable with Coach [Will] Muschamp and the whole coaching staff.
"The fact it's in the SEC conference, it's close to home and not to mention the networking at the University of Florida in the state is bar-none. It's the biggest and the greatest in the state. You can be anywhere in a Gators shirt and someone will just walk up to you and give you the Gator chomp. Really, as far as networking goes, it's Gator Nation -- it's not just fans, it's a nation. Just getting to know the other commits and the players, it's become second nature to me. It was a no-brainer."
While attending events such as The Opening in Oregon and the Nike Football Training Camp in Orlando, Sherit had an opportunity to meet and bond with Florida's 2013 commits. The U.S. Army All-American said his relationship with those commits played a key role in his decision to pledge to Florida.
"When it came down to it, when I was comparing schools that I was considering seriously, I haven't really met any of their recruits or players, and I do at Florida. I know almost all of them," Sherit said. "So really, that's what it came down to."
One of his closest friends, Vernon Hargreaves III, pledged earlier in the week and is looking forward to taking their budding friendship to Gainesville.
“Jordan's my brother,” Hargreaves said. “I've known him for less than a year. He's over at my house all the time, we hang out. He's my brother.”
Sherit, who cannot enroll early at Florida due to the course work he is taking, said he plans on making a contribution as soon as he gets to Florida.
"Florida is getting a guy who is a hard-working, high-motor player," Sherit said. "I'm going to do whatever it takes to get on the field as a freshman. I'm not going to say I'm going to start, but I'm going to get on the field as a freshman. I'm going to work my tail off to do that. Coach Muschamp and I have talked about that. I don't care about the depth chart.
"For me, I don't want to be promised anything. Hard work speaks for itself. That's what I want to do and that's how I want to progress as a player. They have high expectations for me both athletically and academically. I want to be a great player on the field, but I also want to be academic All-SEC and try to be an academic All-American by the time it's all said and done."
Sherit's commitment gives Florida 20 pledges, including 13 in the ESPN 300.