Getting to know: Defensive tackle Jalen Lee

Apr 11, 2020 | 0 comments


Though he was ranked as just the 362nd prospect in the 247Sports composite rankings, few signees were as big for the Gators in the 2020 class as defensive tackle Jalen Lee‍ and not just because he’s 6-foot-3 and nearly 300 pounds.

LSU usually gets just about everybody they want in Louisiana. Lee, from Watson, Louisiana, was committed to LSU for five months before decommitting and pledging to UF a couple of weeks before the December signing period. His flip is perhaps a sign that things are turning around for the Gators on the recruiting front. In previous years, players like Lee probably wouldn’t have wound up in Gainesville.

He’ll join the team over the summer as part of perhaps the nation’s best incoming defensive line class. Though he can’t workout at his school right now and when he’ll be allowed to workout with his new teammates is uncertain, Lee believes he has an adequate regimen at home.

“I have a couple workout machines at my house,” he said. “I have a bunch of stuff actually at my house, so it’s nothing new to me.”


Inside the Gators takes an in-depth look at Lee on and off the field in this edition of “Getting to Know.”

Personal

What do you plan on majoring in? 
“Business entrepreneurship. When I get done playing, I might try to open up my own franchise, own a couple businesses and things like that.”

If you got a chance to go on a dream date, who would it be with? 
“I’d say Beyoncé.”

What would be your first purchase if you got drafted in the first round of the NFL Draft? 
“I would say a house.”

What is one item that you cannot live without? 
“My game, my PS4. [My favorite games are] Madden and [NBA]2K.”

What is your favorite professional football team? 
“The Saints.”

Who is your favorite professional player right now? 
“I would have to go with Fletcher Cox. The way he uses his hands, and he’s powerful and explosive.”

What are your favorite types of music? Do you have a favorite artist or song? 
“My favorite artist is Kevin Gates.”

What is your favorite movie? 
“I would say ‘Remember the Titans.’ I like the way they all came together as a team and got things done.”

What is your favorite TV show? 
“I would go with the show ‘You’ on Netflix.”

If you could spend the day with anyone, past or present, who would it be and why? 
“I would say LeBron James. I just feel like he gives off good vibes. I feel like he would be cool to hang with.”

Where do you see yourself five years from now? 
“Hopefully in the NFL, owning a couple businesses.”

What are three things on your bucket list? 
“Skydiving, and – pretty much just skydiving.”

What is one thing about you that the Gator Nation would be surprised to find out about? 
“My nickname is Nooney. They call me Nooney because I used to suck on a pacifier until I was like 8 years old.”

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2020 Signees Getting to Know Series

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Football/Recruiting

Take us through the process that led to your commitment. What was that experience like for you? 
“I feel like Gator Nation played a big role in me committing. The fans and stuff, they’re incredible. And also Coach [David] Turner and Dan Mullen, they’re both good, down-to-earth guys. So, that was a major part of my decision as well.”

Which school came in second for you and why? 
“The school that came in second for me was either Alabama or Texas A&M. You know, Nick Saban is Nick Saban. Texas A&M, they have nice facilities. Their coach, Jimbo Fisher, he’s a good guy too.”

If there is one thing you could change about the recruiting process, what would it be? 
“Nothing really. Just enjoy everything, enjoy all the visits because you’ll only get it once.”

If you could play a sport outside of football, which sport would it be? 
“It would be basketball. I used to be a basketball player, and, my freshman year, I used to play basketball. It keeps you in shape when you’re not playing football. Just like being around my friends, hanging with my friends and my peers.”

What is your favorite football memory? 
“When we went to the third round of the playoffs [my sophomore year].”

What would you say are some of your greatest strengths as a football player? What do you need to work on? 
“I feel like my hands and feet are my strengths, and the thing I need to work on is getting stronger and flexibility.”

What is the most appealing part to you about the University of Florida? 
“Just the campus. The campus is real nice. The [Hawkins Center], where the student-athletes study at, I like that too.”

What do you really need to work on the most when you get to Florida? 
“Just staying grounded. Staying humble and just soaking up everything and being a sponge.”

Who is the prospect that you have talked to the most from the Class of 2020? 
“I would say Gervon [Dexter]. We went on our official visit together, and we just hit it off. Like, ever since then, [we] kept in touch.”

If you could pick any jersey number, what would it be? 
“92. My coach in high school, he wore 92 at Vandy, and he retired it when he coached here at my high school. He opened it back up for me to wear.”

Which NFL player do you liken yourself to the most? 
“I would say Fletcher Cox. He uses his hands great and his feet and his power.”

Tags: Recruit

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