Florida and its rivals like Miami and FSU have had a difficult time keeping the best in-state talent home. Many top players have elected to head to other powerhouse programs like Georgia, Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State or LSU instead. It’s a major reason some of the top programs in Florida have struggled to make the College Football Playoff.
The Gators’ efforts to keep one of its top targets at safety in the state of Florida failed this weekend. Three-star defensive back Devin Moore committed on Sunday to Notre Dame over the orange and blue.
“I’m so thankful God has put me in a position to further my athletic and academic career into a higher level,” Moore wrote on Twitter. “I want to thank my family for always believing in me and punishing me towards betterment in every aspect of life.
“Thank you to my coaches and teammates for helping me maximize my potential. To the colleges and coaches who gave me attention, support and an opportunity to live out a dream of mine, I’ll always have the utmost respect for you and the universities you coach for. This has been a life-changing experience and a very difficult decision. With all that being said, I have decided to commit to the University of Notre Dame! Go Irish! Thank you Brian Kelly and Marcus Freeman for this opportunity.”
Moore sat near the top of Florida’s defensive back board and visited Gainesville in early June. Cornerbacks coach Jules Montinar was the main contact for the Niceville, Florida, product and was a huge part of why the Gators remained near the top for Moore throughout his recruitment.
“It was a great visit,” Moore said after his June visit, according to SI’s AllGators. Oh, it was beautiful. I mean, just seeing everything again, seeing the coaches again. Just kind of further developing that relationship with Coach Jules, you know, been developing that with him for a couple of years now since he been at USF and Georgia. That’s my guy, I really mess with coach Jules. He actually came from my high school. So you know, we’ve got a very strong and great relationship.”
Coach Dan Mullen and his staff will move their focus toward another safety target on their big board like a Kamari Wilson or Tre Donaldson.