Four-star QB Feleipe Franks commits to Florida, giving Gators much-needed 2016 pledge

By Adam Silverstein
November 29, 2015

There will be no player that the Florida Gators will add in the 2016 recruiting cycle more important to the immediate future of the program than four-star quarterback Feleipe Franks (Crawfordville, FL), who made a verbal pledge to join the team Sunday evening.

“It’s great to be a Florida Gator! #Committed,” Franks wrote on his Twitter account.

On the heels of one of the worst offensive performances in school history, the Gators needed a major win and got just that Sunday when Franks, the No. 45 overall player in the 247Sports Composite, chose to commit to Florida just six days after backing off his pledge from LSU.

Franks (6-foot-5, 220 pounds) is one of the most highly-coveted players in his class. The strong-armed, mobile signal caller is considered a top-five pro-style quarterback prospect and had dozens of offers to choose from. UF nabbed Franks over programs like Alabama and Florida State, in addition to LSU.

With nearly 7,000 yards and 82 touchdown passes compared to 17 interceptions for his high school career, Franks has been a tremendous performer for Wakulla High School. He’s completed 57 percent of his passes for 2,347 yards, 30 touchdowns and two picks as a senior, according to the Orlando Sentinel.

There should be no doubt that the Gators’ offensive performance Saturday, or lack thereof, contributed to Franks’s signing, though Florida had been after him for quite some time, increasing the intensity of its recruitment following the suspension of redshirt freshman Will Grier.

With Grier set to miss the first seven games of the 2016 season, and sophomore Treon Harris proving that he is simply not up to being the Gators’ starter, Franks will have a legitimate opportunity to start from day one.

Franks, who plans to enroll early in January, could be on campus in just over a month; he would then join the team for spring practice in March.

Now the highest-rated player in Florida’s Class of 2016, Franks is the team’s 26th commitment. He’s the third to join the Gators on Sunday, following pledges by three-star junior college wide receiver Dre Massey (Goodman, MS) and three-star offensive lineman Jawaan Taylor (Cocoa, FL).

Joining Grier, Harris and Franks on the Gators’ 2016 quarterback roster will be redshirt junior walk-on Luke Del Rio, a former scholarship player at Oregon State, and 2016 three-star Kyle Trask (Manvel, TX). UF also has four-star Jake Allen (Fort Lauderdale, FL) committed for 2017.

Oh, by the way, Franks also kicks.


  1. like rm says:

    What recruits were at the fsu game

  2. g8ter27 says:

    Needless to say, a huge pick up for us. Also, am I the only one that finds it strange that Grier did not practice wile working on his appeal. Brady flew back and forth to New York yet managed to practice. Adam, any idea if he practiced this past week with the team?

    • Fernzpat says:


      Simply scuttlebut heard on the street, but all the Bull Gators I was sitting around at the game (I scored amazing seats) were saying no way Grier comes back. Apparently mad at UF for the way they “mishandled” (made him apologize) for his mistake?

      I would not be sad to see us take another QB this cycle, although Franks seems the real deal.

      • Ken (CA) says:

        With Richt gone and Eason potentially reopening recruiting, I would love to make a run at him as well. Franks has a lot of upside, but is supposedly very raw because he hasn’t played that much

  3. Timmy T says:

    Throws a nice long ball. Lays it out there rainbow style with touch.

  4. Gatoralum88 says:

    Awesome news! Mac’s working hard on the trail! I also saw a tweet with Mac & Eddy Piniero (Bama commit & #1 JC K).

    I think it’s safe to assume either Del Rio or Franks will start next season & over Treon…if he’s still on the team…my guess is he won’t be. Both fit what Mac wants (pocket passers). Both were ‘Elite 11’s. I’m sure both will see action against UMass with Del Rio likely starting the opener based on time served & knowledge of the offense. Franks has a nice release which won’t get batted down constantly like little Treon. I’m also glad he’ll enroll early. Whoever wins the job, if he’s playing well by week 7 I’d hope Mac wouldn’t make a change to Grier just because he’s off his suspension.

    So, with 26, are they down to just getting Shavar Manuel & Nate Craig-Myers? Can they sign more than 28?…or is it just a matter of having 85 max on scholarship by June?

    • Gatoralum88 says:

      P.S. – Adam, your commits list on the right needs updating. Thanks!…& keep up the good work!

    • senuod says:

      I believe Adam mentioned in a previous article that 5 early enrollees in this class will count towards last year’s numbers, so , technically, we’re looking at 21ish recruits that count towards the max number allowable for the upcoming class…..

      I’m pretty certain that’s correct, but….anyone feel free to correct me if I’m completely off base here….

    • Ken (CA) says:

      From what I have read, they are expecting a number of decommits as mutual departures to be filled with higher skilled. There are a number of top names that are still looking at us and us at or near the top. Some will leave for early NFL to give some room, plus we had some extra room from last year not filling all spots, and others will part ways on the lower end.

    • Michael Jones says:

      I think we all need to calm down on Grier. Gator Nation has notoriously short memories when players do well, and elephant memories when something goes wrong. Grier is still an exceptional talent. . he had us on our way to an undefeated season. Let’s not write him off yet.

  5. scroud says:

    Didn’t I read somewhere that Treon was recruited by a team for a cornerback position? Maybe next year he could transition to that side. Shout out to Quinton Dunbar who is playing db on the Redskins and had a pick yesterday, went from receiver to d league, to playing big in yesterday’s game. Go Gators!

  6. Sharon Milner says:

    Good news.

    I imagine Grier might be a bit uncomfortable with the team not doing well the last few weeks, since his actions contributed to their downfall.

    I do not believe he was innocent in using the banned substance. He is too smart for that!

  7. SW FL Joe says:

    The best thing I love about Mac is he recognizes the team’s shortcomings and makes moves to fix them. Between Del Rio, Franks and Trask we should be good at QB for 2016 and with Allen coming in 2017 QB should be a real strength going forward. Grier may be in the mix but I just don’t see Mac benching his 6 game starter come game 7 in favor of Grier considering he wouldn’t have taken a live snap in over a year. Love his comment about getting the best kicker in the country, too.

  8. Ken (CA) says:

    I think Treon was successful for a while because he was a mystery. Now there is plenty of tape on him that even teams like FAU can scheme against him. Del Rio and Grady must be really, really bad for Mac to not put them in at all yesterday, but getting Franks will help a lot, and I would love to see them tak a shot at Eason as well. Eason could start day 1.

    • senuod says:

      Del Rio isn’t an option this season. He has to sit out for one year because he is a transfer.

    • Michael Jones says:

      Treon also had some luck early on. His first pass in the game against UT that everybody hailed him as the 2nd coming should have been a pick six–game over–but the DB dropped it. I remember him also throwing up a prayer in the LSU game that our tight end made a miraculous catch on that probably should have been intercepted. That same tight end had just dropped and end zone pass from Driskel that was right in his hands.

      Eventually his inability to throw well caught up with him. He looked horrible in the FSU game in Tally last year. . a game we would have won if Muschamp had the sense to put Driskel back in.

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