Vernon Hargreaves came to Florida last summer and didn’t waste time beginning his ascent up the depth chart. He saw action in every game, earning a start in the final 10. As a freshman, Hargreaves intercepted a pass in three of the first four games of the year before opposing teams started to avoid him.
His freshman season ended with 11 pass breakups, equaling the most by a true freshman in Florida history. He was named First Team All-SEC, Third Team All-America, SEC Newcomer of the Year and National Defensive Freshman of the Year.
Hargreaves was one of 15 semifinalists for The Thorpe Award last year. Cornerback Joe Haden was the last Florida player to be named a finalist when he was selected in 2009. Lawrence Wright won the award in 1996 and is the only Florida player to win it.