Muschamp Looking for Size at Linebacker

One thing is for certain, Florida head coach Will Muschamp is looking for some size at the linebacker position. A coach that stresses the defensive side of the ball, Muschamp is also big on a formidable front seven on defense. The Gators have recruited some talent at linebacker, but they really need some size that they can run out there against some of the bigger and more powerful offensive units.

The Gators would probably like to sign three of a group of several linebackers that are targeted and a list that may very well grow before the month of January is over.

A month ago, the list of linebackers was dwindling quickly, but with a new head coach that has a defensive flare, the linebacker group has grown.

The Florida staff hosted the first of several big backers they are expecting to visit in January when Stephone Anthony (6-3, 225) of Wadesboro (NC) Anson HS made an end of the week visit and left late Friday to head home. Anthony showed his ability in the Under Armour Game week's festivities last week and made his official visit on his way home from the game.

Anthony is one of three five-star linebackers that may very well visit the Gators. The second is U.S. Army All-American Curtis Grant (6-3, 215) of Richmond (VA) Hermitage. It looks to be a dogfight for Grant's services between Florida and Ohio State at the moment.

Florida is working hard to get a visit from five-star backer and Army All-American Tony Steward (6-1, 215) of St. Augustine (FL) Pedro Menendez. Florida State has been the team to beat forever it seems, but Clemson may be the leader over the last couple of months. Florida and its new brand of defense have made some inroads and I would suspect that Steward will visit the Gators.

Lateek Townsend (6-2, 207) of Bennettsville (SC) Marlboro County rounds out the Army All-Americans on this list and is listed as one of the smaller linebackers in the group. Townsend wrote off the Gators early in the process, but is one of the prospects that has become intrigued with the new Gator staff and should pay a visit later in the month.

Denzel Perryman (5-11, 225) of Coral Gables (FL) will be a hard one to get away from the Miami Hurricanes, but he should visit Florida in the upcoming weeks. Again, Perryman is a linebacker that wrote off the Gators in previous months.

Curt Maggitt (6-3, 210) of Palm Beach Gardens (FL) Dwyer has been one of the more elusive prospects on the recruiting trail. No one is really sure what Maggitt might do. Alabama and Florida State have been rumored to lead lately, but he maintains he is wide open. Florida does have three of his teammates from last season already on the roster but it will likely take Florida's new playing style to lure Maggitt.

There are two linebackers committed elsewhere on this particular list and one is Kent Turene (6-3, 225) of Lauderdale Lakes (FL) Boyd Anderson. Turene at the moment is a USC Trojan but has decided to make some official visits before signing day. Gifted with great size and that south Florida swagger on the football field, Turene would be a good get for the Gators heading down the stretch.

Maybe the newest prospect on the list is James Vaughters (6-2, 232) of Tucker (GA). Vaughters is currently committed to Stanford and really values his education but with Stanford head coach Jim Harbaugh just announced for the NFL's San Francisco 49er's, the floodgates of schools wanting to test his interest is going to open. Already Ohio State and Miami have been to see Vaughters this week. Florida's D.J. Durkin recruited Vaughters to Stanford and then tried to recruit him to Florida once he arrived a year ago, so he has to be very comfortable with the Gators' linebacker coach.

There really are no new names on this list, but more a bunch of names that have come back on the scene after disappearing for various reasons. In the last month the linebacker board has doubled and there are sure to be a few more names on the board before it is done. In all likelihood, look for those prospects to be of the larger variety linebacker.

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