Florida Gators basketball coach Mike White has been busy ahead of the opening tip-off on Oct. 30.
He has only pulled in three commitments so far, but they’ve been huge gets for the team. White’s No. 4 recruiting class is a testament to the work he has put into landing these three recruits.
Scottie Lewis, SF
Lewis is arguably the best athlete in the entire 2019 class. There’s a reason he’s rated as a five-star player. Standing at 6-foot-5, 185 pounds, the sleek small forward can just about do it all.
He’s got a smooth-looking shot, and he’s really one of the only “true wings” in the class. But his athleticism really sticks out.
Just type in “Scottie Lewis Highlight Mixtape” into Google or YouTube and you’ll see what the hype is all about. The New Jersey native failed to score double-digit points in just five of his 28 games in his junior season. He averaged 16.4 points and 5.5 rebounds per game.
How he’ll fit into next year’s rotation warrants a little thinking.
UF will graduate three (presumed) starters next year in Jalen Hudson, KeVaughn Allen and Kevarrius Hayes. Expect the small forward slot to be filled by Lewis come this time next year.
Tre Mann, PG
Mann somewhat surprised basketball pundits when he committed to the Gators back in late August. The Florida native received offers from Louisville, North Carolina and Kansas.
He has good handles and a smooth shot, which he turned into an even 20 points and 2.3 assists per game in the 2017-18 season.
The one knock people are going to have on the five-star is his size. He’s 6-foot-3, 170 pounds. Clearly, he could stand to add some muscle to that slender frame.
Mann’s spot in the rotation is a bit tricky as well. A nice spot for Mann to settle would be the shooting guard position if the UF basketball strength and conditioning staff gets ahold of him.
Omar Payne, C
Payne is seen as the underrated get of the recruiting class. He’s a four-star center. Standing at 6-foot-9, he tips the scale to 215 pounds. He’s also a little undersized, but his wingspan makes up for it. There are no official readings on any of the major rankings services (247, ESPN, Rivals, etc.) but several unofficial accounts have Payne’s wingspan listed as 7-foot-5.
He’s the No. 38 recruit in the 2019 class, according to 247Sports. He averaged 19 points per game last season and led his team to a spot in the Florida Class 9A regional final appearance.
Payne may not start as a freshman, but it is worth noting that there are only two other centers on the team - Hayes and Gorjok Gak. Hayes graduates after this season, and Gak only plays sparingly.
Follow Chris O'Brien @THEChrisOB or contact him at email@example.com.
Coach Mike White has recruited the current No. 4 class in the country for the UF basketball program in 2019.