Sports

Florida football loses top commitment after Georgia visit


Shemar James, who is No. 70 on the 247Sports composite list, announced his de-commitment from the University of Florida Wednesday morning on Twitter.

He last visited Gainesville in July and said that he was “shutting down” his recruitment after the trip, but a lot has changed since then. For one thing, James has moved up from No. 130 to No. 70 on the composite list since then. The other major difference is that Florida doesn’t look close to the same team it was when it faced Alabama in Week 3, especially on defense.

James was at Georgia last weekend and saw the nation’s best defense hold the SEC’s top running back to just seven yards. In his announcement tweet, James added the hashtag “#justbusiness,” making it clear that Florida is no longer offering the best future for him.

James was the highest-rated player in Florida’s recruiting class of 2022, and losing him drops the Gators down to No. 18 on the 247Sports team recruiting rankings. Florida still has three-star EJ Lightsey in its class of 2022, and it’s targeting four stars Wesley Bissainthe and Jaron Willis. Bissainthe has Florida in his top five, but Willis would need to be flipped after committing to Georgia Tech.

Losing James comes at a low point in Dan Mullen’s tenure at Florida. Sloppy losses to Kentucky and LSU have the season effectively lost, and now the team’s top incoming freshman has bailed. Landing one or both of those four stars could help get Florida back near a top-10 class, but it’ll be hard to replace a top 100 player.

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