“DBU”, or Defensive Back University, is one of the most argued topics among college cornerbacks and safeties. Some say LSU, which was home to Patrick Peterson and Tyrann Mathieu, while some say FSU — where Derwin James, Jalen Ramsey and Deion Sanders starred — is where the real DBU resides. But Gator fans know the one and only true DBU is the University of Florida.
That’s a main reason one the nation’s top defensive backs just committed to Florida. Chris Steele, ranked 40th overall and the fifth-best cornerback in the 2019 class by 247Sports, announced he’ll be a Florida Gator during Saturday’s All-American Bowl in San Antonio, Texas.
The four-star recruit chose UF over Southern California, South Carolina, Oregon and Oklahoma, though USC was a close second because of its proximity to Steele’s hometown of Bellflower, California. He had been committed to the Trojans from July to October.
“They always say that home is where the heart is, and my heart is at the real DBU. I’m a Florida Gator,” Steele said, likely getting Trojan fans’ initial hopes up.
“Florida, like I said is DBU. They have the tradition of producing those DBs, and you know, coach Mullen and his staff I feel are the best in the country, and I feel like we can win some national championships together.” — Chris Steele
Steele’s commitment propelled Florida’s recruiting class to No. 11 after beginning No. 15 early Saturday. Dan Mullen’s first full recruiting cycle could quietly shape up to be a top-10 class after landing four-star wide receiver Arjei Henderson during Thursday’s Under Armor All-America Game as well.
Florida is still the favorite to land Kaiir Elam, the country’s 61st-best prospect and 7th-best cornerback, who hails from North Palm Beach, Florida, and is the nephew of former standout Gator safety and first-round pick Matt Elam. That would certainly boost UF’s current class, which trails just four other SEC teams in Alabama, Georgia, Texas A&M and LSU.
Steele’s 247Sports composite score of .9804 is the highest for a Florida defensive back recruit since Jalen (Teez) Tabor’s .9925 mark in 2014. Tabor was the 15th overall and fourth-best cornerback prospect.
Similar to ex-Gator and current NFL cornerback Quincy Wilson, Steele possesses the size and speed to lineup with the big, strong receivers of the SEC. At 6-foot-1, the 187-pounder has ran a 4.54 40-yard dash and has the frame to put on more weight.
In addition to his coverage skills, it’s clear Steele has a high motor. Just take a look at this clip of him while at St. John Bosco high school chasing down a running back in high school.
And to quench your thirst for more of Steele’s highlights, well, hear you go: