Family is very important to Lorenzo Carter, so it's no surprise that when the five-star defensive end from Norcross, Ga., went to Gainesville this weekend for his first official visit, the Gators pitched Carter on a family environment.
"I got a chance to go to Coach Muschamp's house and eat dinner with the coaching staff, and I got to hang out with their families and meet with the wives and everything like that," Carter said. "My parents liked that because they had a chance to see it's like a family atmosphere at Florida and I think that really got my dad and mom comfortable with the decision to go to Florida if I went."
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Carter had very high expectations going into the trip and said not only were they met -- they were exceeded.
"It was fun, for my first official I think it actually stood up to the hype," Carter said. "It did [meet expectations]. It went beyond my expectations."
Carter said what set the trip apart from other trips he's been on during the recruiting process is the amount of personal time he got to spend with coaches. On the field, he came away very impressed with the Gators defense.
"I had a chance to see Ronald Powell and Dante Fowler play," Carter said of the two former five-star defensive ends who now start for the Gators. "Dante got defensive player of the week in the nation after that. It was crazy. I got a chance to talk to coach after and he said he was using [defensive tackle Dominique] Easley as bait so he let them go. He said if I go there he can use Fowler as bait to free me up."
The Gators defense is considered to be among the nation's most talented, and Carter said he thinks coaching also has a lot to do with it.
"I love the way they do their defensive scheme," he said. "Their defense is just so energized. I loved it. They have some young players, so they'll be there when I'm there. I think that would just be great to add on and get a chance to play for a dominating defense in college."
Carter arrived in town early Saturday morning and left early Monday morning, traveling by car to and from Gainesville. He said the five-hour drive from the Atlanta area wasn't bad and he could see his family making it in the future.
"I feel like it's not that far," Carter said. "My mom always told me a six-hour radius and if it's out of six hours she'd have to move so I think it's pretty close. It's not that far where it couldn't be a weekend trip."
Carter recently visited Georgia for the Bulldogs game against South Carolina and figured to be back in Athens for their game against LSU on Saturday, but said he's not sure if he'll be making that trip.
"I don't know yet. I'll think about it," Carter said. "There's so much going on. I'm focused on my game, we've got Mill Creek coming in and that's a big one."
Carter said Florida has "the edge right now," but only because the Gators got the most recent trip. He's added that he's still planning on taking official visits to Alabama and Georgia.
"My other officials will probably be after the season," he said. "Georgia and Alabama, those are going to be after the season. I'm going to try to make an unofficial to 'Bama for the LSU game, but I'm just going with the flow right now."
Woody Wommack is a Southeast Region football recruiting analyst for Rivals.com. You can click here to follow him on Twitter.
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