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April 9, 2012
Life long Gators fan Dillard takes the plunge
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At this pace the 2013 class for the University of Florida could be one for the record books. On Monday the Gators picked up their 15th commitment in Canton (Mich) offensive lineman Cameron Dillard.
Though he hails from Michigan, Dillard grew up a big fan of the Orange and Blue. Making his first ever visit to Florida this past weekend for their annual spring game.
Dillard said the visit was unforgettable.
"First time actually getting down here and it was an awesome visit," said Dillard. "I wasn't sure if I wanted to commit before the trip but I wanted to get it over with so I can focus on my senior year. In the back of my mind being a Gator fan since I was a kid was awesome."
It wasn't until after a tour on Monday that Dillard knew that Gainesville was the right place for him to be and pulled the trigger.
"On the tour they showed me where I would be living, athletic facilities I mean you name it, I just felt very comfortable after seeing it all and with the staff as well. Coach [Bryant] Young, Coach [Tim] Davis, and coach [Jon] Haskins were all with me and we were just down in the lobby and I told them I wanted to be a Gator and then they went crazy."
The madness did not stop at that, shortly after the 6-foot-4, 285 pound big man was talking with Florida head coach Will Muschamp.
"He was having a meeting at first with the Athletics Director, but after we went in there and he said "what's up Cam?" and I told Coach Muschamp as well that I wanted to be a Gator, he was real fired up about it, he said I was their number one center that they wanted for 2013, and there was a need for my position, and also that I would probably back up my first year but after I would have three solid years."
Although the talented three-star has gotten a chance to visit just about every school that has offered him to date, he said that the trip to Florida gave him an overall different feeling.
"The weird thing is that Saturday when I finally got there and I've always talked about the gut feeling is this right for me will I get the gut feeling? When I got on campus and hung out for a while and I got that feeling, that's when I told Coach Davis and Young that I may have some news for them in the next 36 hours. So I went home and talked to my dad and thought about it and then talked to my mom and just knew I wanted to be a Gator."
With a bigger sized backfield for the Gators the coaches have noted the need to institute more of a power running game, something that Dillard thinks he can contribute to early.
"My high school now is a run first time, so this will be a really east transition for me, so to be able to go to somewhat of the same play with a little variation will be good for me. The coaches' love the way I run block and what I do at my position, but they most liked what I do off the field and how I volunteer in my community and do the right thing when nobody is looking."
Although Dillard has grown up a Gator fan and stated he is very happy with his pick, he may not be quite ready to shut the process down.
"I will probably still talk to some of the coaches that I have built relationships with, there's nothing wrong with that, but my word is my bond and I'm a Gator."
Dillard did add that a few of those schools he's gotten close with would be Oregon, Arkansas as well as a few others that he did not name.