Florida recruiting: Gators in position to sign stellar DB class
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How are we looking at DB for next cycle?
— Ryan daSilva (@rdasilva16) April 16, 2018
The Gators should have no trouble filling their defensive backs needs in this recruiting cycle.
Barring an early departure from junior Chauncey Gardner-Johnson or additional attrition, Florida can return its entire secondary for the 2019 season. That would be 16 players with incoming true freshmen David Reese and Justin Watkins set to play safety and cornerback, respectively.
Corner: Marco Wilson, C.J. Henderson, Trey Dean, Brian Edwards, McArthur Burnett, Justin Watkins
Nickel: Chauncey-Gardner Johnson, Amari Burney, C.J. McWilliams
Safety: Jeawon Taylor, Brad Stewart, Shawn Davis, Donovan Stiner, Quincy Lenton, John Huggins, David Reese
Dean and Watkins provide some much-needed cornerback depth. The Gators will try to sign three or four more in the 2019 class, and they have several elite targets at the position.
This spring Florida hosted 5-star cornerback Derek Stingley Jr. (Baton Rouge, La.) and 4-star cornerbacks Kaiir Elam (North Palm Beach), Chester Kimbrough (New Orleans) and DJ Turner II (Suwanne, Ga.).
The Gators took the lead for Kimbrough last Saturday and they’re considered the team to beat for Elam, whose uncle is former Florida safety Matt Elam. After attending the Gators’ spring game, Stingley “bumped them up higher” on his leaderboard and Turner named Florida in his top 11 on Tuesday.
The Gators are also expected to receive an official visit from 5-star cornerback Chris Steele (Bellflower, Calif.), who plans to make his decision on July 7.
Florida has a commitment from 3-star safety Trent Whittemore (Gainesville, Fla.) and will land at least one more prospect on the back end. Some top targets are 4-star safeties Cortez Andrews (Tallahassee, Fla.), Nick Cross (Josh Sanguinetti (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) and Tyrique Stevenson (Miami), a top-100 cornerback who is being recruited by Mullen as a safety.
Cross officially visited to Florida last weekend and attended the spring game along with Andrews, Stevenson and Gant, who is currently committed to Alabama. Sanguinetti plans to take a trip to Gainesville at a later date.
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