The Florida High School Athletic Association state football playoffs get underway this weekend. While a few games in the Miami area kickoff Thursday evening, the vast majority of the games are set to start at 7:30 p.m. Friday night. Each of Florida's eight classifications will feature Florida Gator commits or targets in the opening round of play. Below GatorBait.net breaks down the match-ups Gator fans should keep an eye on.
Florida 5-star cornerback commit Vernon Hargreaves III plays will face Gators safety target Marcell Harris to open the playoffs.
Wharton, which features Florida’s five-star cornerback commit Vernon Hargreaves III, travels to play Dr. Phillips and the Gators’ top safety prospect left on the board Marcell Harris, who is expected to announce his college decision that day.
Also in the north half of the bracket, Timber Creek and standout 2015 running back Jacques Patrick, who has offers from Florida, Florida State, Miami, Alabama and more, travels to face Olympia. East Lake, with Florida targets 2014 wide receiver Artavis Scott and 2015 wide receiver George Campbell, host Treasure Coast.
In the southern half of the bracket Florida’s top offensive line prospect in the 2014 class Kc McDermott and his Palm Beach Central squad host Palm Beach Gardens. South Plantation and four-star running back Alex Collins, a player UF recently offered, host Miramar. Miami Killian with Florida offered 2015 athlete Jaquan Johnson travel to play Southwest Miami.
Florida linebacker commit James Hearns and his Tallahassee Lincoln teammates play host to Fleming Island. Win and he could face fellow Florida linebacker commit Daniel McMillian, whose First Coast team takes on Buchholz. The Gators are also after First Coast 2015 linebacker Sherrod Pittman.
Five-star offensive tackle Laremy Tunsil, a player the Gators will hold a spot for until signing day, and his Columbia teammates open the playoffs against Bartram Trail.
Gainesville with Florida wide receiver commit Chris Thompson will host Hernando in the opening round.
RB Adam Lane, who is committed to Florida, opens the playoffs against New Smyrna Beach.
Florida wide receiver commit Alvin Bailey and his Armwood team will travel to play Largo. Bailey could have faced a fellow Florida commit in the second round of the playoffs, but defensive end Jordan Sherit is rehabbing a torn ACL. Sherit’s Hillsborough squad hosts Osceola.
Winter Haven and stand out running back Adam Lane, who is committed to Florida, will travel to New Smyrna Beach in the first round. In the second round he could be Gators linebacker commit Quinton Powell as his Mainland team travels to play Lake Gibson to start the playoffs.
Standout 2015 defensive tackle CeCe Jefferson of Baker County hosts Creekside. Win and the Florida target may meet Gators wide receiver commit Ahmad Fulwood in round two as Bishop Kenny plays Ponte Vedra.
Further down the bracket Pasco and Florida defensive line commit Joey Ivie hosts North Marion in the opening round.
On the southern half of the bracket Immokalee and current Florida State commit J.C. Jackson host Estero. The Gators continue to pursue the Seminole commit.
Possible favorites to secure the title American Heritage-Plantation with Florida 2014 running back target Sony Michel host Miami Jackson.
South Sumter, featuring Florida four-star safety commit Keanu Neal open the playoffs against Jacksonville Raines who will be without Florida 2014 offensive line target Travaris Dorsey with a leg injury.
In the southern half of the bracket Florida 2014 wide receiver commit Ryeshene Bronson and his Dunbar teammates opens the playoffs against Orlando Jones who features Florida State wide receiver commit Kermit Whitfield.
Florida 2014 WR commit Ryeshene Bronson will face Orlando Jones in the first round of the FHSAA playoffs.
Trinity Christian Academy and Florida safety commit Nick Washington open the playoffs against Pensacola Catholic who has 2014 linebacker Delvin Purifory, who the Gators have kept tabs on early.
Tampa Catholic and 2014 prospects Corey Martinez and T.J. Harrell travel to face Fort Meade in the first round. The winner could face 2016 quarterback Xavier Gaines of Frostproof as the travel to play Clearwater Central Catholic.
University School and Florida offered 2014 defensive back Quincey Wilson hosts Cardinal Newman in the opening round. Win and American Heritage-Delray with one-time Florida offensive line commit Roderick Johnson could be waiting. American Heritage hosts Chaminade-Madonna who has Florida offered 2014 defensive tackle Khairi Clark.
Florida running back commit Kelvin Taylor and his Glades Day begin their quest to add another state title against Champagnat Catholic.
Crescent City and Florida defensive tackle commit Caleb Brantley travel to play Union County in regional semifinals.