The Florida Gators had a big day in the inaugural early national signing period. It was Dan Mullen’s chance to prove his recruiting prowess after just a few weeks on the job.
The Gators came into the day with two four-star targets on the board that were huge in the shaping of the 2018 class—quarterback Emory Jones and defensive back Trey Dean.
Florida landed Jones earlier in the day, and Dean followed suit a few hours later.
The 6-2, 180 pounder out of Hampton (Ga.) Dutchtown was previously committed to Tennessee, but reopened his recruitment after the coaching changes took place in Knoxville. With Alabama, Kentucky and Georgia still in the mix, he decided to follow his family ties and sign with his dream school.
“First of all, this is the place God wanted me to be,” Dean said. “I had a lot of choices to go anywhere in the country. I just trusted in God. Of course, my last visit was to my dream school. My cousin is Ahmad Black, so you know, I had a lot of ties to it.”
Dean said Mullen was one of the only coaches who stayed on him hard after his commitment to Tennessee, and once he took the Florida job, he convinced him to make the trip to Gainesville.
Once he got down and had the chance to meet with Mullen and the coaching staff, he knew it was the right fit for him.
“It was really exciting,” Dean said of his visit. “Coach Mullen is really a team guy, you know. He’s got a lot of enthusiasm, a lot of love. I really appreciate that.”
Dean is the fourth safety to sign in Florida’s 2018 class, and the 13th signee of the early signing period.
With the additions of the day, the class is trending upward, and Dean has just one message for Gator Nation:
“Go Gators,” he said. “Tune in next season.”