New Tennessee commit is ‘still open’

Ja'Quain Blakely (Chuck Kingsbury/AJC)

Ja’Quain Blakely (Chuck Kingsbury/AJC)

Ja’Quain Blakely, a 3-star linebacker, committed to Tennessee earlier this month.

Could he be on the verge of reconsidering his decision?

“I’m still open like I was before,” Blakely told the AJC on Saturday. “As most do, a lot of people change their minds last minute. I’m not saying that I will. I’m not saying that I won’t.”

If he were, though, Florida appears to be the school that could flip him. Blakely told the AJC that his decision earlier in the month ultimately came down to the Volunteers and the Gators. The 6-foot-2, 216-pound product out of Colquitt County says Florida has been relentless since then.

“Florida hits me up every day,” Blakely said. “They’re hitting me hard right now.”

Blakely says he has a growing confidence in coach Jim McElwain and the direction Florida is headed.

“They’re on the up,” Blakely said. “They didn’t have a real good season last year, but I believe that this year they’ll have a pretty good one.”

Added Blakely: “Everything about them is great. The coaching staff, (tight ends coach Greg Nord), (defensive coordinator Geoff Collins), all of them.”

Is it safe to say the Gators have become Plan B?

“Right,” Blakely said.