Comparing 2021 Florida Recruits to Former Gators: Diwun Black
Versatility is the ability to adapt or be adapted to many different functions or activities.
For a defense in college football as traditionally good as Florida, this is an essential component. UF is at its best when it boasts defensive ends that can play linebacker, and linebackers that can play defensive back.
The Gators had that when they had former Miami Dolphin, Jelani Jenkins, strapping up in orange and blue every Saturday. Now, with Mississippi Gulf Coast prospect Diwun Black on his way to Florida, UF could get more of the same.
Watch a few of Jenkins highlights here. Notice how it a mixed bag. Some of these highlights are the hard-hitting tackles of a linebacker. Some are sacks that took the pursuit of a defensive end. Some display the ball-hawking skills of a safety.
All show versatility.
Now watch Black do the same thing. His highlights show him doing everything. He catches passes on offense, he chases the quarterback, he covers wide receivers.
If there is something that can be done on a football field, Black does it. Just like Jenkins did in his time at UF.
One stark difference, however, is their build. Jenkins was a much more stout six feet, 240 pounds. Black is 6-foot-3 and 226 pounds. However, Black should fill out more when he gets to UF. This will make them closer in weight and give Black even more length to work with.
Essentially, Black is a taller version of Jenkins. Despite differences in build, both play an extremely similar brand of football. That brand is what makes them special to a Florida defense that is used to having special players across the board.
Judging by his high school tape, Black may be better against the pass than Jenkins was. While Jenkins shorter, more built stature made him more physical against the run. However, as Black gets bigger, the physicality that he already has will get closer to what Jenkins had, all while honing in coverage skills and speed that he is clearly gifted with.
Another aspect of their games that is similar is special teams. Jenkins was a great special teams player for Florida. His physicality paired with his speed and pursuit made him a rare commodity on punt team, punt return, etc. With how much coach Dan Mullen values special teams, it is hard to imagine that he will not want Black heavily involved.
Mullen loves to talk about "game-changing" plays on special teams. Black is a game-changer.