Heading into National Signing Day, Florida coach Jim McElwain wanted to have at least five or six offensive linemen in his signing class.
With the Gators losing four linemen with starting experience from last year’s team, McElwain is essentially working from the ground up.
"That was something that we felt we needed to do especially not because of the talent that we have but because of the lack of numbers we had," McElwain said.
And when Wednesday was all said and done, the first-year head coach reached his goal, signing six offensive linemen to next year’s roster.
In addition to five-star tackle Martez Ivey’s commitment, which McElwain said filled a big need for Florida, the Gators also signed five three-star offensive linemen in its 2015 class.
McElwain credited offensive line coach Mike Summers — the lone coach retained from the Will Muschamp era — for his ability to keep up with recruits during the transition period between head coaches.
"He had been recruiting the area obviously," McElwain said. "He built relationships with a lot of offensive linemen, just the nature of the position. Mike did an outstanding job, as all our coaches did."
McElwain building depth at running back: McElwain does not plan to use a feature back.
He’s not a believer of having a running back carry the ball 40 times every game.
"I believe you need to have a one, two and three punch when you’re going in there," McElwain said.
And with the group McElwain has in the backfield, that won’t be an issue.
In addition to rising junior Kelvin Taylor and redshirt sophomore Adam Lane, McElwain saw two four-star recruits — Jordan Cronkrite and Jordan Scarlett — join his roster for next season.
"I really liked the way these guys interact and understood how they can help each other and push each other through competition to be better," McElwain said.
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