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Gators get a versatile defender in DE William Green; Is Florida's D-line deep enough?

GAINESVILLE -- Florida received a commitment from defensive end William Green of Hoover (Ala.) Spain Park on Wednesday. In case you're wondering, Spain Park is the other high school in Hoover, Ala. (As in, not the one that was featured on the MTV reality show "Two-A-Days" and just went through a major scandal, which included the firing of its head coach. Hoover High is also the school that produced former Florida receiver Chad Jackson.)

As most of you know by now, I'm pretty familiar with this neck of the woods. My kids attend an elementary school that feeds Spain Park. ANYWAY, I had a chance to see Green and the Spain Park Jaguars in action this season. Spain Park beat Oak Mountain handily that Friday night and I'm fairly certain it was the turning point of the season for Spain Park. The Jags went on to compete for Alabama's Class 6A state championship thanks in large measure to a defense led by Green. Green is being recruited as a defensive end but in the game that I watched Green played more linebacker than defensive end. The point being, he's a pretty athletic kid.

If Green's commitment holds up (anything can happen between now and Feb. 6) it would be another major recruiting coup for Florida. It's always difficult to lure a major recruit away from the State of Alabama. Add in the fact that Spain Park's special teams coach is a former Auburn legend and landing Green is a big victory for Florida.

Green is the 22nd commitment for the Gators and fills the recruiting void left by Chaz Sutton, who had his scholarship offer recently pulled. Apparently, Sutton wasn't going to qualify.

Green weighs about 215 but don't expect him to get too much bigger, 20 pounds max. He's tough and fast and will add a much-needed pass rush to the Gators' defensive line. Like Justin Trattou and Duke Lemmens last season, I wouldn't be surprised if Green plays a little as a freshman. Florida coach Urban Meyer wasn't pleased with his defensive line in 2007. The D-line in 2008 has the potential to be better. Let's take a look:

Florida loses one starter, redshirt junior Derrick Harvey. While this is a pretty big loss, Florida is deep at the position. Possible DE starters in 2008 include returners Jermaine "Cup Toss" Cunningham, Lawrence Marsh, Carlos Dunlap, Jaye Howard and Duke Lemmens. According to Meyer, Trattou has been moved inside to defensive tackle. Green would take Trattou's spot.

Joining Trattou at defensive tackle will be Javier Estopinan, Torrey "The Open Container" Davis, John Brown and Terron Sanders. Add incoming freshmen Omar Hunter, Bryan Jones and Troy Epps to that list and Florida should be able to find a couple guys good enough to start.

If you're counting, that's six defensive ends and eight defensive tackles. (With Trattou being the eighth DT.) Is this enough?



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