Mount Dora Christian 2019 linebacker Jesiah Pierre, who had been committed to Miami for nearly two years but decommitted in May, has turned his attention to Florida and pledged to the Gators on Sunday.
“It’s close to home, great atmosphere, exciting environment and family-based culture … just the right fit,” the 6-foot-3, 220-pound Pierre said. “I just had to trust God with it. My heart was telling me that’s the place for me. I talked to my family and just figured that’s the best solution. Now I just gotta keep humble, keep working hard because I have a lot more to strive for.”
Gators assistant coach (safeties) and Central Florida area recruiter Ron English was instrumental in the process once he joined the Gators staff after the coaching change-over and the hiring of head coach Dan Mulllen.
“We talked a lot and just got to know each other more and more and built our relationship,” Pierre said.
The first person he told Sunday was Gators assistant coach [quarterbacks] Brian Robinson.
“I told Coach Robinson. All of the coaches are on vacation so I’ll probably talk to the rest of them throughout today,” Pierre said. “[Coach Robinson] was really excited about it and he talked to me about life in general, as well.
“It was a good conversation.”
Pierre visited Gainesville several times during the spring, including the Gators spring game and a camp June 16, which is when he said he really started turning his attention to Florida.
“It feels kind of weird right now because I imagined the whole recruiting process to be different,” Pierre said. “But God has a plan for everybody and so right now it feels kind of relieving, but exciting at the same time. It’s a new chapter in my life and I just have to adapt to it and keep moving forward.”
Since he had been committed to Miami for so long, Pierre said it was a bit strange reopening the recruiting process and turning his attention in another direction. Georgia was another school that had entered the Pierre sweepstakes as his services became a hot commodity.
“I had been committed to Miami for a long time, so being uncommitted was kind of weird at first, but I had to learn that if you want to do something you just gotta move on," said Pierre, who is the No. 2-ranked player in the Sentinel's 2019 Central Florida Super60. “So I just have to move on in life.”
He said he’s pumped about the new coaching staff.
“The way the coaches have passion for the game and they want their players to not just succeed in football, but to succeed in life. They’re good people at Florida,” Pierre said. “[Coach Mullen] is a really passionate guy and I’ve just been getting to know him more. He’s the head coach and he’s really busy, so I understand that, but given the time that I have spent with him, he’s just a real passionate, energetic guy.”
Pierre has been a do-everything player for Coach Kolby Tackett at tiny Mount Dora Christian, not only playing linebacker, but also taking snaps in the Bulldogs single wing offense. He’s big, long, athletic and driven.
Article originally from The Orlando Sentinel