Defensive needs in the Florida Gators recruiting class of 2018

Dan Mullen is officially the Florida Gators head coach so that mission is complete but now the Gators must get out on the recruiting trail and improve this roster.

Mullen and his assistant coaches will hit the road on Tuesday where they will be visiting prospects in hopes of getting them on campus for an official visit.

GatorCountry.com is going to break down each position and let you know who the commits are at the position and the needs for that spot.

First up was the offensive side of the ball and now we will follow that up with the defensive side of the ball.

One note, I’m not going to add targets just yet as the board is changing with the new coaching staff.

Defensive line:

Need: 3-4: Florida had some injuries up front this year but the unit as a whole was pretty solid but they could be hit big time with guys leaving early for the draft. Guys like CeCe Jefferson and Taven Bryan are very likely to leave and that would create a need. The Gators need at least one defensive tackle and two defensive ends to build the depth up. The group is pretty young but talented.

Commits: Zero commits at the moment after defensive end Taylor Upshaw flipped to Michigan.

Linebacker:

Need: Three: If offensive line isn’t the biggest need than linebacker is and the unit’s depth was exposed big time this year. With James Houston and Ventrell Miller suspended the Gators at time only had four healthy linebackers available for games. The Gators must get depth at the position heading into next year.

Commits: David Reese. Reese is very familiar with Mullen as his older brother is a lineman for Mississippi State. Reese and his family are very comfortable with Florida and I would expect him to remain solid with the Gators. Reese is a guy that can play any of the three linebacker positions as well as drop down to defensive end some.

Defensive backs:

Need: 4-5: The Gators are very young at defensive back but the need to add depth at cornerback is a huge need this year. Florida needs at least one safety in the class as well but that position is filled with young guys for the most part.

Commits: Randy Russell, Divaad Wilson, Amari Burney and Deontai Williams. Williams and Burney are both safeties with Burney having the ability to play several different positions. Both of those guys remain solid as does Russell who is a key leader in the class. Wilson is a big time corner prospect who says he’s solid as long as Randy Shannon stays with the Gators.

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Andrew Spivey
Andrew always knew he wanted to be involved with sports in some capacity. He began by coaching high school football for six years before deciding to pursue a career in journalism. While coaching, he was a part of two state semifinal teams in the state of Alabama. Given his past coaching experience, he figured covering recruiting would be a perfect fit. He began his career as an intern for Rivals.com, covering University of Florida football recruiting. After interning with Rivals for six months, he joined the Gator Country family as a recruiting analyst. Andrew enjoys spending his free time on the golf course and watching his beloved Atlanta Braves. Follow him on Twitter at @AndrewSpiveyGC.