The Worton family has some unfinished business to take care of in Gainesville.
South Dade wide receiver C.J. Worton chose to sign a National Letter of Intent with UF — the school where his oldest brother, Cody, played as a walk-on — over West Virginia in a decision that came down to National Signing Day in front of over a hundred students and family members at his school’s auditorium.
Worton, a four-star prospect, according to 247sports.com, who was committed to FSU just over a week ago, will now get a chance to face the Seminoles every season.
“Both schools were very even, and it started coming down to the very little things that factored in that would change my mind,” says Worton, who added that his family being able to attend nine games next season was a major factor.
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Worton said he finalized his decision Wednesday morning after staying up till 1:00 a.m. He was changing his mind daily but then received a sign.
“It was my mom. She asked God for a sign, and she wanted it to be clear as day for me to go to a school ‘in the clouds,’” Worton explained. “Sure enough, when we get home, we see [a newspaper article], and Will Grier [UF’s highly-coveted quarterback from North Carolina in its recuiting class] is in the newspaper as an All-American and right behind him is some clouds.
“So I thought that was a message from God.”
Cody only played in two career games as a Gator in the 2008 season before tearing his anterior cruciate ligament in a game against UM and never playing again. Now C.J. has a chance to pick up where his brother left off.
“He didn’t push me to either direction,” C.J. said. “He tried his best not to be biased… I’m very thankful that he was there throughout this whole process for me, and that I had him as a helping hand.”
He will also be all but a two-hour drive from another brother, J.J., who will be a senior receiver at UCF in 2014 after a 2013 campaign that saw him contribute on the Fiesta Bowl-winning Knights and make a one-handed diving catch in the end zone in a game against Temple that is still shown on replay on the ESPN Sportscenter Top 10.
Worton says FSU laid off in recruiting him, and that led to his decommitment
“They became complacent in my recruitment,” he says. “I feel other schools wanted me more.”
Worton had over 1,000 receiving yards and 15 touchdowns as a senior at South Dade — three of those touchdowns coming in the 41-28 Class 8A state final upset of defending state champion Apopka. It was South Dade’s first state title.
Fellow receiver Tyre Brady signed with UM, where he’s been committed to since the day of South Dade’s regional quarterfinal playoff win over Southwest. Brady had two touchdown catches that night in a convincing win that got the ball rolling for the Buccaneers’ magical run.
“My family was always telling me to go to the University of Miami,” Brady says. “I’m just ready to get there.”
At 6-3, Brady would be taller than all but one of the receivers on the Hurricanes’ current roster.
Staying with the ACC, cornerback Antwan Cordy signed with Syracuse, creating a potential matchup of Cordy covering Brady when both are seniors and the Orange play at Miami in 2017.
FAU locked up receiver Nathaniel Terry, who signed with the Owls and then rose a large FAU banner to the crowd.
Quarterback Kahlil Render, who threw for over 300 yards in the state title game, did not make a Signing Day decision. Bethune-Cookman is one of the schools recruiting him.