Florida rebuilds D-line by including transfers Newkirk, Shelton

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Florida is rebuilding its defensive position with assist from the switch portal.

The Gators formally welcomed former Auburn defensive deal with Daquan Newkirk to this system Thursday, just a little greater than per week after touchdown ex-Penn State defensive deal with Antonio Shelton.

The duo ought to assist change two-year starters Kyree Campbell and Tedarrell Slaton, each seniors who opted to maneuver on to the NFL.

Newkirk entered the NCAA switch portal Monday after spending three years with the Tigers. The 6-foot-3, 317-pound Orlando native began each regular-season recreation for Auburn in 2020. He skipped the staff’s bowl recreation.

Newkirk notched 28 tackles, together with 1 ½ sacks, final season. He will likely be a graduate switch for the Gators in 2021 after taking part in sparingly in 2018 and ’19.

Shelton enrolled at Florida final week for his sixth 12 months of eligibility. He’s persevering with his collegiate profession due to an NCAA blanket waiver that provides athletes an additional 12 months due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Shelton began 20 video games at Penn State. The 6-foot-2, 327-pound Columbus, Ohio native completed the 2020 season with 14 tackles, together with 3 ½ sacks, one pressured fumble and one cross defended. He was honorable point out on the All-Huge Ten groups.

Florida is revamping its protection after the staff’s worst season on that aspect of the ball in additional than 100 years. Coach Dan Mullen fired secondary coaches Ron English and Torrian Grey earlier this month and changed them with former Auburn assistant Wesley McGriff, who certainly helped land Newkirk.

The Gators (8-4), who ended the season ranked No. 13, allowed 30.8 factors a recreation in 2020. It was their most since giving up a mean of 41.2 factors over six video games in 1917.

Florida’s line was one of many protection’s few strengths, although. The Gators led the Southeastern Convention in sacks, averaging almost three a recreation.

Exterior linebacker Jeremiah Moon and defensive finish Zach Carter, who led the staff with 5 sacks, already introduced plans to remain at school and play one other season. Between them, the 2 transfers and one other 12 months of improvement for Brenton Cox and Gervon Dexter, Florida ought to have one other formidable entrance in 2021.

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