NAME: Gerald Willis
POSITION: Defensive Tackle
CLASS: RS Senior
JERSEY: No. 9
RECRUITMENT RATING: 4-star
WT: 280 lbs
A highly-touted recruit, Willis originally committed to the University of Florida but multiple suspensions lead to his dismissal and transfer to Miami. A change of scenery did not initially prove helpful for Willis as he faced disciplinary issues at Miami and even took a leave of absence from the team.
All indications are that Willis is ready to be an impact defender for the Hurricanes in 2018, something it desperately needs given the loss of defensive tackles RJ McIntosh and Kendrick Norton to the NFL.
While Willis’ impact so far has been minimal, there’s no mistaking his talent when on the field. A blend of power and athletic ability, Willis has active hands and the ability to play on the other side of the line of scrimmage. Slated to be Miami’s three-technique, he has the skill set to thrive in a penetrating role with a wide open window to play the vast majority of the defensive snaps.
If Willis can remain focused on football, he is capable of a monster season. Head coach Mark Richt has raved about his practice efforts on the scout team which is a strong indication of where Willis’ head is at. He may not be a household name, but Willis has immense upside if everything comes together.