Defensive end reconsiders, picks Gators

Published: Wednesday, January 28, 2004 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, January 28, 2004 at 12:29 a.m.
The Florida Gators picked up an unexpected recruiting prize Tuesday afternoon.
According to TheInsiders, standout Merritt Island defensive end Mike Mangold has backed out of an oral commitment to Virginia Tech and pledged to Ron Zook and the Gators. Mangold's UF commitment also was reported on Sunshine Network's Web site.
Mangold, who earlier in the recruiting process listed UF and Miami has his favorites, committed to the Hokies more than a month ago after a visit to Blacksburg, where his uncle, former UF assistant athletic director Jim Weaver, is the athletic director at Virginia Tech. Mangold appeared solid for the Hokies until early last week, when he contacted the Florida coaches and asked if he could make an official visit to Gainesville over the weekend.
The 6-foot-3, 245-pound Mangold is considered one of the top defensive ends in Florida and also had offers from Miami and Tennessee.
"When I looked at tape of his junior season this summer, I said, 'I'm looking at David Pollack (the Georgia All-American defensive end),' " said national recruiting expert Jamie Newberg of TheInsiders. "He has a motor that doesn't stop. He's just a great prospect. This is a big pick up for Ron Zook."
With signing day now only a week away, the Gators have oral commitments from 15 prospects and could hear news today on two other top players on their board - fullback David Holbert from Nashville and linebacker Josh Johnson from Stone Mountain, Ga.
You can reach Robbie Andreu by calling 374-5022 or by e-mail at andreur@gvillesun.com.

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