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Florida football recruiting: Gators land versatile safety Dakota Mitchell

The Gators pick up a prospect who had been a Tiger-to-be.

Florida v Florida State Photo by Don Juan Moore/Getty Images

The Florida Gators have had a relatively quiet June on the recruiting trail, with no verbal commitments coming in the first two weeks, and the last one on the ledger being Texas quarterback Jalen Kitna’s pledge in late May to become the second QB in Florida’s 2020 class.

Picking up a Central Florida safety with plenty of versatility that in a hurry, though, and Florida did exactly that on Thursday by reeling in Winter Park’s Dakota Mitchell.

Mitchell’s commitment comes at the end of a tumultuous week: He decommitted from LSU on June 12, and less than a day ago, he named Georgia the leader for his services. Mitchell also declared last weekend that he would be bringing touted wide receiver Christian Leary along with him; on Tuesday, Leary, a major Florida target who also hails from the Orlando area, committed to Alabama.

But even if Mitchell is only bringing himself to Florida’s fold, that’s a substantial addition. On tape, the 6’0” safety shows ball skills, versatility, speed, instincts, and the ability to both hit and tackle.

And despite being a three-star prospect, Mitchell has been a coveted one: He obviously held an LSU offer, but also claimed tenders from Alabama, Clemson, Georgia, and Oklahoma, among dozens of others.

Mitchell is Florida’s 18th commitment for the 2021 recruiting cycle, and should help maintain the Gators’ place in the second half of the nation’s top 10 recruiting classes. Florida entered the day at No. 9 in those rankings, per the 247Sports Composite.