With Utah firmly in sight, Florida football released its initial depth chart for the 2023 season yesterday. We can finally stop speculating on who the Gators will run out on the field on Thursday and start talking in absolutes.
Well, sort of, it’s also well-known that college depth charts don’t always match reality. But it gives us a peek into what Billy Napier and the staff think now that Fall Camp is officially over.
Here are our three biggest takeaways from the initial depth chart for the 2023 season.
Florida Football: King of the Castell
If you asked most Florida Gator fans heading into the spring of 2023 who would be one of the starting safeties for the 2023 season, Kamari Wilson would have been a near lock.
Rumblings throughout Fall Camp started to brew that Wilson might not have that spot on lock, and at least initially he will be starting the season as a backup.
Miguel Mitchell, who started to see some playing time last season, got one of the spots, while true freshman Jordan Castell has been given the other.
We recently highlighted Castell, and at the time, we noted that he was a super physical safety coming out of high school. We also noted that:
"“What will dictate whether Castell stays on the field is his ability to diagnose opposing offenses and make sure he knows where to be”"
Scooby Dooby Doo
Jeremiah “Scooby” Williams had quite the offseason. After spending last year as a backup inside linebacker, Williams at one point during the spring was discussed as an EDGE player before moving back to an inside linebacker.
And, after sitting out a couple of days during Fall Camp due to injury, most assumed that the two starting middle linebackers for Florida football would be Shemar James and Teradja Mitchell, the transfer from Ohio State.
To see Williams as a starting inside linebacker is a bit of a surprise. But he is a former top 50 player nationally out of the class of 2021, and perhaps 2023 is his breakout season.
Not So Fresh at Receiver
Much written space has gone toward the three standout freshmen wide receivers the Gators brought in as part of the class of 2023. Eugene Wilson, Aidan Mizell, and Andy Jean all have the potential to be freshmen All-Americans if any of them live up to their billing.
But not only are none of them listed as a starter against Utah, which isn’t too surprising, but only one of them is listed as a backup.
Wilson is listed behind Ricky Pearsall in the slot position, which isn’t that surprising. Jean is listed behind both Caleb Douglas and Marcus Burke, while Mizell is listed behind Pearsall and Wilson.