Landing elite talent doesn't always translate to wins in college basketball and football. But it does at the University of Florida, where head coaches Billy Donovan and Urban Meyer have turned recruiting success into four national titles – two in each sport – since 2006.
And neither is living in the past with more high school All-Americans on track to arrive in Gainesville over the next year.
Meyer begins the process of integrating the nation's top 2010 recruiting class today as Florida opens fall camp. Led by defensive linemen Sharrif Floyd (No. 11 overall prospect) of Philadelphia and Ronald Powell (No. 13) of Moreno Valley, Calif., the Gators wound up with 10 of CBS College Sports and MaxPreps.com recruiting analyst Tom Lemming's Top 100 last February. Six of those came from outside the Sunshine State, illustrating the program's far-reaching appeal.
The 2011 class could be equally impressive with five Top 100 talents already committed, including quarterback Jeff Driskel of Hagerty (Oviedo, Fla.) and playmaking receivers De'Ante Saunders of DeLand (Fla.) and Javares McRoy of Lakeland (Lakeland, Fla.).
At least eight other Lemming Top 100 selections have Florida firmly on their radar, including the No. 1 prospect in America – James Wilder, a 6-foot-2, 220-pound running back from Plant (Tampa, Fla.).
Not to be outdone, Donovan reeled in a top 25 recruiting class of his own that should provide immediate help in getting his program back to the elite status it enjoyed during the back-to-back national championship seasons of 2006 and 2007.
The Gators have sputtered a bit since then, missing the NCAA Tournament in 2008 and 2009, then getting bounced in the first round last March. But help is on the way with a five-player signing class that includes MaxPreps Top 100 picks in Patric Young, a powerful 6-8 post player, and wing Casey Prather of Jackson, Tenn.
Donovan's 2011 efforts are off to an outstanding start with the commitment of St. Louis shooting guard Bradley Beal, the No. 5 rising senior in America.
Beal is coming off MVP honors at the FIBA Under-17 World Championship in July as the United States captured gold. He also led the St. Louis Eagles club team to a pair of major tournament championship games this summer.
* MaxPreps.com's Stephen Spiewak also contributed to this report.