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Insider

Top prospects countdown - No. 1

5/22/2012

There are six or seven spots left in Florida's 2013 class and a few needs to fill. Some of the top prospects in the nation are considering the Gators, and it would be difficult to turn them away. So GatorNation is ranking the top 12 uncommitted prospects for Florida this week, two-a-day. We’ll also add comments by some of our Insider subscribers from The Chompions Club premium message board.

No. 1

Derek Tyson's pick: OT Laremy Tunsil (Lake City, Fla./Columbia)

With NFL-caliber defensive linemen scattered throughout the SEC, top offensive tackles are at a premium. Tunsil admittedly grew up a Florida fan and lives just 45 minutes away from Gainesville. Tunsil is the top player on Florida's board despite the signing of five-star tackle D.J. Humphries last year.

The U.S. Army All-American is big, athletic, and at 6-foot-6, 295 pounds, he runs like a tight end when he gets out on he edge. Tunsil's top six consists of Florida, Oklahoma, Florida State, Georgia, LSU and Alabama, and he will make his decision on signing day. The Gators will certainly have their work cut out for them, but the talented Tunsil is worth the risk.

Jeff Barlis’ pick: CB Vernon Hargreaves III (Tampa, Fla./Wharton)

Unlike Derek and the consensus from our readers, I went in a different direction with my top pick. The reason is need. I believe it is imperative that Florida land Hargreaves, the nation's top cornerback. He has the size (5-foot-11, 185 pounds), speed (timed at 4.45 in the 40) and advanced technique (coach's son) to live up to they hype. The Gators need a premier cornerback more than some think. Despite good depth at the position, there is no star as of this summer. Marcus Roberson arrived in the 2011 class with a lot of potential, but wasn't as much of an impact freshman as Joe Haden or Janoris Jenkins -- two Gators who established UF as a bit of a destination for high draft picks. Roberson also suffered a scary injury to his neck, which may have increased Florida's desire for more top cornerback prospects.

In February, UF landed Brian Poole in its class of 2012. He's an excellent prospect, but Florida also doggedly pursued the nation's top CB, Tracy Howard, and just missed. With the uncertainty surrounding the Gators' young and unproven group of cornerbacks, the need for a certain-impact freshman like Hargreaves only increases. Tunsil is extremely important, but Hargreaves is UF's biggest need.

Readers’ pick: OT Laremy Tunsil (Lake City, Fla./Columbia)

DK_Thompson - Top tackle that could help anchor the offensive line with D.J. Humphries for a few years. Has great size and great technique at only 17 years old. Would have to likely shift to right tackle out of his natural left tackle position, however.

secrocks2000 - Will Muschamp preaches the SEC is a line-of-scrimmage league, and adding the best OT two years in a row could go a long way to solidifying the offensive line for years to come and give Muschamp the power-running game he is looking for with Tunsil and Humphries.

chris smith 24 - For obvious reasons you need as much depth as you can get on the o-line, and he's the best lineman in the country.

RussianTurtles - Definitely what we want to be the cornerstone of this year's class.

scooterp518663 - Would be THE cornerstone to what maybe the strongest OL class we've had in 5 years.

kendallland1 - Best OL in the country in 2013. Enough said.

dukeoden - Need a big-time tackle to add to the o-line.