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4-star DL recruit still favoring Florida despite opening up to other options

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Florida football is coming off its hottest stretch on the 2023 recruiting trail and there is still some headroom for more heat to build. After roping in a few commits and handing out several offers at the end of July, the Gators remain vigilant when it comes to wooing the top prep prospects in the country.

Among those still pondering the potential of a future in the Swamp is four-star defensive lineman Will Norman out of the prominent IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida. The 6-foot-5-inch, 290-pound trench warrior had the Orange and Blue in his top five targeted programs heading into summer. However, he has subsequently added some schools into the mix, including Deion Sanders’ Jackson State Tigers, which has complicated the process for the top contenders.

“I still have four OVs to use,” he told 247Sports. “I’m definitely trying to go to the TennesseeAlabama game. I have that set up right now. (IMG) doesn’t have a game that weekend right now, but our schedule can get mixed around. So, as of right now, I’ll be at Tennessee-Alabama. I’m definitely trying to make a Jackson State game, too.

“Kentucky is also now on my list. I definitely want to go see what they are talking about.”

Before opening the process up, Norman had the Texas A&M Aggies, Penn State Nittany Lions, LSU Tigers and Michigan Wolverines in his top five in addition to the Gators. Along with Jackson State, the Kentucky Wildcats and Tennessee Volunteers appear to be contenders for the rising senior’s talents as well.

As far as what Gainesville has to offer the big defensive lineman, he expressed his comfort with the familiarity that an in-state destination has to offer.

“It’s a comfortable place for me. I go to IMG. So, with us being in their backyard, it’s always good to keep guys like me home. That’s their big message. They got my brother (Kamari Wilson) last year. They want to keep guys like us home. They are always recruiting me hard.”

Norman is ranked No. 143 overall and No. 21 at his position in his class nationally according to the 247Sports composite, while the On3 consensus has him at Nos. 156 and 18, respectively. He holds one crystal ball prediction from 247Sports for Florida and On3’s recruiting prediction machine gives the Gators a 63.3% chance of signing him.

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Story originally appeared on Gators Wire