Florida's secondary takes another hit with defensive back John Huggins dismissed from the team
Huggins was slated to be a contributor in the already thin Gators secondary
Reports surfaced earlier this month that Huggins was reported twice to Florida's Student Conduct and Conflict Resolution department last fall. In one of those incidents, he allegedly put his hands around a tutor's neck. The alleged victim also reported the incident to the University of Florida Police Department, but did not press charges. The other incident involved marijuana that was found in his dorm room, according to 247Sports.
Huggins' absence during fall camp, however, was not related to those incidents, according to 247Sports. He is the fifth Gators player/staffer to be involved in an incident that includes violence against women under second-year coach Dan Mullen, as the Tampa Bay Times noted earlier this month.
The 6-foot, 200-pound native of Daytona Beach, Florida, was likely in line to earn significant playing time in the Gators defensive backfield -- potentially at nickelback behind fellow sophomore Trey Dean. Without Huggins, the options at nickel behind Dean are extremely limited. One of Florida's young linebackers might be pressed into a bigger role, or a reserve at another position -- like 6-foot-6, 232-pound junior rush end Jeremiah Moon -- might be forced to change positions on the fly.
Huggins' dismissal couldn't come at a worse time for the Gators, who kick the season off in Week Zero on Aug. 24 against rival Miami in Orlando. With only two weeks of practice before teeing it up, Mullen and defensive coordinator Todd Grantham have some work to do to figure out their defensive two deep against the Hurricanes.
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