Dee Finley (Auburn, Ala.) verbally committed to Urban Meyer and the University of Florida on Saturday while on an unofficial visit to the Gainesville campus. Finley, the No. 1 rated defensive prospect on the 2008 ESPN Watch List, had narrowed down his choices to Florida, LSU and Auburn. However, the Gators offered more than just a national championship atmosphere to the hard-hitting safety.
"It was the people and coaches at the school who sold me, not just football," Finley said. "The whole coaching staff is down to earth and seem to care about you as a person."
One of the most coveted defensive prospects liked the feel of the campus and surrounding community just as much as the athletic facilities. Finley was also quick to acknowledge Meyer's recruiting touch.
"Coach Meyer is different than a lot of coaches," Finley said. "You can tell he actually cares about the little things in a person.
"He is a good guy to talk to."
At 6-foot-3, 210-pounds, Finley is a rare athlete who can cover, close and hit. He should offer co-defensive coordinators Greg Mattison and Charlie Strong great scheme versatility with his range in coverage and physicality supporting the run.
Finley joins defensive end Earl Okine (Gainesville Fla.), another talented ESPN 150 Watch List candidate as Florida's only two 2008 commits thus far. However, it appears the Gators are just beginning to heat up.