Brandon Paul locks down one corner spot. Auburn-bound Michael Slade locks down the other. Rising junior T.J. Bryant plays free safety while Deshaun Barnes plays the outside linebacker/strong safety spot.
"We have put in a lot of hard work and we feel like we should have a real good defense this year," Barnes said. "We went to a 7-on-7 tournament at Valdosta and barely lost in the championship game to Nease. We're really excited for the start of the season."
Barnes, 6-foot-1 and 200 pounds, says recruiting is going very well for him right now. He lists six schools that he's still considering and continues naming a leader.
"I still like Auburn, Florida State, Florida, and LSU," he said. "You can add in Tennessee and Miami now too. With Tennessee, I like the coach. I like how he presents himself and plus, they have a good track program."
Barnes, whose teammates Tim Lamb and Brandon Paul are also being recruited by Miami, talked about the Hurricanes.
"With Miami, they got my game film from the spring and started recruiting me," he said. "They've been sending me a lot of stuff lately. They have a great program down there and I'm definitely looking at them now. Miami hasn't offered me yet though."
One SEC school continues to hold the lead for the talented safety prospect.
"Auburn's still on top," he said. "I still stay in touch with them a lot. Basically, I'm looking for a school where I feel comfortable and a place with a really good track program. All of the schools I'm looking at have good track programs."
Mike Bakas can be reached at email@example.com
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