Gators Recruit "Catfished" On Twitter Into False Florida Commitment

Nash Central defensive end Houshun Gaines announced his commitment to the Florida Gators on Friday after receiving what he thought to be a scholarship offer from Florida assistant coach Brad Lawing. However, said scholarship offer didn't actually exist.

Gaines had been engaged in conversation with someone posing as Lawing on Twitter over the past month and a half. The ruse was revealed when Nash Central athletic director Michael Mosley contacted Florida after news of Gaines' commitment reached his office.

"When I talked to a coach, they told me they hadn't spoke to Gaines in several weeks," Mosley told Rocky Mount Telegram, via The Sporting News. "I think he was talking to someone he thought was a coach. I guess he said that he had talked to a coach the night before [the announcement], but they said he hadn't talked to anybody on the coaching staff."

Gaines' story is a saddening lesson in how social media has made it easy for people to slide into the role of the imposter. Florida still has interest in Gaines (as does NC State and Virginia Tech), so the young man's dream isn't dead by a long shot.

However, the humorless prank will sting for now for Gaines - encountering a problem that Florida's coaching staff says is all too prevalent in today's day and age.

"The [Florida] coaches said that there are so many people out there who claim to be close to the program or be part of the program, who aren't part of the program that get in a kid's ear," Mosley said. "They can't filter it."

With National Signing Day set for February 4th, Gaines is ready to jump right back into the mix:

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