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Florida football to host top-100 OL on first recruiting visit

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After Florida missed out on four-star offensive tackle Payton Kirkland on July 23, Billy Napier and his recruiting staff shifted to another blue-chip target on the offensive line, four-star tackle Zalance Heard out of Neville High in Monroe, Louisiana.

Of course, Napier’s ties to the state of Louisiana are well known. He just left ULL after four years at the helm for the Ragin’ Cajuns, and local prep players are bound to have a favorable opinion of him. Mix in the fact that Napier has brought some of his former staffers along with him, and Florida is more than a reasonable threat to poach a kid out of the Bayou State.

Heard is the perfect candidate for Florida to go after. So far, LSU, Texas and Nebraska are viewed as the major players in the race for his services. Blake Alderman of 247Sports confirmed that Heard will make his way to Florida on Wednesday, July 27, for his first-ever trip to the Swamp. FSU will also get him this week, so he’s clearly opening the door for the Florida teams to join the fray.

On3’s recruiting prediction machine has the Tigers as 97.7% favorites to land Heard when all is said and done. A decision is expected ahead of his senior year, so Napier and Co. will have to move fast to pull it off.

Heard is ranked at No. 13 overall by On3’s individual rankings and is a five-star recruit according to the service. The On3 consensus, which weights all four major services’ individual rankings evenly, has him at No. 52 overall and No. 5 among offensive tackles. The 247Sports composite has him at No. 60 nationally and No. 7 at his position.

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