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August 5, 2011

Gators grab five-star Humphries

COVERAGE: Niebuhr chat replay from announcement
VIDEO: Farrell on decision | VTO | Highlights
MORE HUMPHRIES: Top five | VTO | Pos. rankings

CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Few knew where five-star offensive tackle D.J. Humphries was headed for college until he announced his pick early Friday evening.

Humphries, however, had been leaning a certain way for quite some time.

"I felt pretty confident in Florida when I left my visit (in March)," Humphries said.

In a ceremony at Mallard Creek High, Humphries, the No. 3 overall prospect nationally and No. 1 offensive lineman, committed to the Gators over, in order, Tennessee and Auburn.

"It's somewhere that feels like home," Humphries said. "It's somewhere I feel like I have a good opportunity to play at. The coaches there are like father figures. They're down to earth. "

For first-year Florida head coach Will Muschamp, Humphries, who is 6-feet-5 and 265 pounds, is commit No. 17 and without question his biggest get to date. Twelve Gator commits are rated as four-star prospects or better. Only Humphries has a fifth star.

Florida assistant D.J. Durkin was Humphries' primary recruiter on the Florida staff.

"Me and Durkin got real close," Humphries said. "Me and him talk a lot and built a good relationship."

According to Humphries, Florida began recruiting him under previous coach Urban Meyer but increased its attention in him "as soon as Coach Muschamp came in." At Florida, he believes he can get into the offensive line rotation as a true freshman. He plans to enroll at the school in January.

Humphries also spoke highly of the Vols, whom he has visited five times.

"I liked Tennessee a lot," Humphries said. "I just felt like Tennessee had to sell me a little more.

"To be honest, only two of (the trips to Knoxville) were intentional visits. I went to a camp and I went to the game. The three other times, I just happened to be in Tennessee. One time I was there on vacation. Another time, my sister had a dance competition."

Humphries plans to visit Florida again this fall, for either the Gators' game against Tennessee, or against Alabama. He did, however, say he'll likely take official visits to other schools, just to check out places to which he didn't make unofficials.

Keith Niebuhr can be reached at kneebs01@aol.com. You can follow him on Twitter @KeithRIVALS.



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