UPDATED WITH NEW INFO AT 8:32 P.M. EST
Jackson defensive end Neiron Ball confirmed Monday that has accepted a scholarship offer from Florida and Roswell-Centennial’s David Yankey committed to Stanford.
Ball, a 6-foot-4, 205-pound rising senior, chose the Gators over Auburn and Georgia. Neiron’s older brother Neland is a redshirt sophomore for the Bulldogs. In the end, that fact might have hurt Georgia more than it helped it.
“He was really skeptical about going to Georgia because he didn’t want to be known as Neland’s little brother,” Jackson coach Mike Parris said. “We talked about that a few times. But it basically came down to the kid really enjoyed Florida.”
Parris said Neiron had long been leaning toward the Gators, even recently buying one of their tags for the front of his car. Then he attended Florida’s Friday Night Lights camp this past Friday “and that was the icing on the cake.”
Said Neiron: “I just had a great time when I went down there. It just felt like home to me.”
Neiron downplayed the effect of his brother’s presence at Georgia on his decision. “I wanted to be there because of him and I didn’t want to be there because of him. It really kind of canceled out.”
Neiron said he made the call to Florida coaches on Monday afternoon. But as of 6:30 p.m. he still hadn’t made THE call — to his brother.
“I haven’t told him yet,” Neiron said of Neland. “I guess I need to. I think he’ll be happy for me.”
Parris said the Gators are “getting a good one, now I’m telling you. He can run like a deer. Ran a 4.43 at Florida’s camp. He’s going to return punts for me. He’s a player.”
Yankey said he chose Stanford over Duke, Wake Forest, South Carolina, Georgia and Florida. Clearly the 6-foot-5, 275-pound rising senior is as strong in the academic department as he is in the weightroom. He said he visited the northern California school this past weekend and that was all he needed to see.
“It was definitely the best school I’ve been to by far,” said Yankey, who plans to major in biology and eventually pursue a medical career. “It was beautiful out there and I really liked the sense of community. It seemed like everyone genuinely liked each other. And they’re getting better in football.”
Scout.com reports that Peachtree Ridge wide receiver Bradley Roby committed to Vanderbilt Monday. I’m still checking on that.