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This 5-star 2024 recruit praised Florida’s cornerbacks coach

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One of the first hires head coach Billy Napier made to overhaul the Florida football program was adding cornerbacks coach Corey Raymond, who also serves as the assistant head coach on defense. Regarded as one of the best defensive back brains in the nation, the signal was clear: Napier wanted the best of the best.

Eight months later and that hire is already paying dividends. The top cornerback and No. 2 overall player in the 2024 class, Desmond Ricks, told Sports Illustrated’s Zach Goodall that the sole reason why he chose to visit Florida during July’s one-week window of in-person recruiting was to spend one-on-one time with Raymond.

Raymond has a history of recruiting elite defensive backs to his institutions and an even better history of developing them to be NFL-level talents. He spent the last decade of his career at his alma mater LSU where he produced seven first-team All-Americans and 14 NFL draft picks, including three first-rounders.

The IMG Academy standout was all business at last weekend’s visit, spending time with Raymond and Napier. The weekend marked Ricks’ second visit to Gainesville this season, where he was able to see the Heavener Football Training Center near completion, which has come along drastically since his first visit back in January.

If the Gators are going to land one of the best players in the 2024 class, they’ll need to show Ricks what they can do to develop him into the player he wants to be. They’ll have to fight off top programs such as Alabama, LSU, and Miami — all programs that Ricks intends to visit this fall.

One-on-one time with the best defensive backs developer in the nation is a great start to what could be the biggest singing to date in the Billy Napier era.

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Story originally appeared on Gators Wire