Posted: 12:06 pm Tuesday, July 1st, 2014

Recruiting: Palm Beach Gardens LB Tevon Coney names Florida, Notre Dame as leaders 

By Anthony Chiang

Although Tevon Coney narrowed his list to 10 schools in June, two programs stand alone in his eyes.

“I’m still pretty open to all of the schools in my top 10, but I like Florida and Notre Dame the most,” Coney said.

Palm Beach Gardens linebacker Tevon Coney is the top rated player on the PBgametime Class of 2015 Big Board.

Palm Beach Gardens linebacker Tevon Coney is the top rated player on the PBgametime Class of 2015 Big Board.

The four-star Palm Beach Gardens linebacker was blown away on his unofficial visit to Notre Dame on June 19. The Fighting Irish were not among Coney’s favorites before the trip, but that quickly changed.

Coney, who is the top rated player on the PBgametime Class of 2015 Big Board, pointed to academics and the football program’s tradition as the factors that impressed him most about Notre Dame. He plans to study mechanical engineering.

“I loved it when I went up there,” said Coney, who is being recruited by Notre Dame running backs coach Tony Alford. “I saw things I had never seen before and the coaches and people there were awesome to me. I didn’t expect it to be that good.”

But Florida has always been one of the favorites to land Coney. The 6-foot-2 linebacker grew up rooting for the Gators and has called it his “dream school” multiple times.

Gators defensive coordinator D.J. Durkin has been the one leading the recruiting effort for Coney.

“Every time I go to Florida, I feel like I’m at home,” Coney said. “The coaching staff there is always great to me. It’s a great school and it has a great football program with a good recruiting class coming up.”

Coney isn’t rushing the process, however. He still plans to take unofficial visits to Auburn, Tennessee and Ohio State in July.

Once he takes those trips, Coney hopes to commit to a school. His preference is to make a decision before his senior season begins.

“Most likely, I’ll have it ready before the season,” Coney said. “I just want to take some of the distraction away to focus on my senior year. My goal is to win a state championship and I want to focus more on that.”

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