Photo courtesy of Hasani Harper

A largely rural area in Central Florida, Polk County has been a college football factory for years.

The 2022 class for Polk looks to be no different than in previous cycles. This class features two 5-star prospects and dozens of other highly-touted recruits.

Notable Alumni of Polk County Football:

Ray Lewis, Kathleen, Pro Football Hall Of Fame

Derwin James, Haines City, Los Angeles Chargers

Demarkcus Bowman, Lakeland, Florida

Maurkice Pouncey, Lakeland, Pittsburgh Steelers

Mike Pouncey, Lakeland, Los Angeles Chargers

Artavis Pierce, Auburndale, Chicago Bears

Bilal Powell, Lake Gibson, New York Jets

Rod “He Hate Me” Smart, Lakeland, Carolina Panthers

In years past, it was almost a given that a majority of Polk County prospects end up at Florida. Times change and fast. Many other programs have been pushing Polk County recruits and even have been making the push to Social Media.

Wavering Fronts

Sam McCall, a 5-star defensive back from Lake Gibson who was once a Florida commit and currently a Florida State commit, may be wavering once more. Alabama has picked back up on pushing for the talent. The Crimson Tide however, view McCall as a wide receiver instead of a defensive back, sources tell Fifth Quarter.

It’s no secret that McCall has been a die-hard Alabama fan his entire life. His Twitter handle is even @Alabama313 if that tells you anything. As of now, we expect that McCall will end up being a part of the Crimson Tide’s 2022 class.

If the Glove(r) Fits

There has been no shortage of stellar Polk County running backs over the years. Names from Bilal Powell to Artavis Pierce to DeMarkcus Bowman have all called the 863 home. Who’s next?

Jaylon Glover, a teammate of the aforementioned McCall, holds offers from Utah, UCF, South Florida, Miami, Tennessee, and South Carolina. As of now however, Florida State who seems to be the favorite to land this top-500 prospect.

Don’t let the 247Sports Composite ranking fool you. Florida’s 6A classification is ranked as one of the toughest in high school football almost every year. You’d be right to be impressed when you learn that Glover ran for seven touchdowns in a single playoff game last season. Yes, seven.

Family Matters

Legacy recruits, you have to land them. They have ties to the program already and sometimes are immensely talented.

That’s the case with Oklahoma legacy recruit Gabriel Brownlow-Dindy from Lakeland High School. He’s had one of the quieter recruiting processes but still just as volatile.

Oklahoma obviously has the advantage with the lineage, but Alabama and Clemson are real threats. When we sat down with Brownlow-Dindy months ago he said Clemson was the offer he wanted and didn’t have. Now he’s got it. There was some buzz with Florida, but the Gators’ consistency with recruiting in general has been questioned many times.