Gervon Dexter is something of a folk hero to Gators fans.
He became the first composite five-star prospect to sign with the Gators since 2015. After committing to Florida as a junior, he remained loyal and didn’t take an official visit to another school. He helped recruit other top prospects to join him in the class.
A freakish athlete packaged in a 6-foot-6, 286-pound frame, Dexter has the potential to be a game-wrecker as both a tackle and a strong-side defensive end down the road. In the meantime, he’ll look to adjust to the college game and earn the trust of his coaches as a freshman.
He’s working on his agility and pad level with his personal trainer in Lake Wales right now in anticipation of hopefully joining his new teammates this summer.
“I haven’t even got in a three-point stance in a while but just also staying low while I’m doing agility, not standing straight up while I’m running,” he said of his workouts. “[I’m] staying low with everything.”
Inside the Gators takes an in-depth look at Dexter on and off the field in this edition of “Getting to Know.”
What do you plan on majoring in?
“It was physical therapy, but right now I’m thinking about things. I want to see some other options before I 100 percent choose physical therapy.”
If you had a chance to go on a dream date, who would it be with?
“Bri’Anna Tyler.” (his girlfriend)
What would be your first purchase if you got drafted in the first round of the NFL Draft?
“I’d buy my mama a car, a [Mercedes] G-Wagon. My sister, my girl and my mama a G-Wagon.”
What is one item that you cannot live without?
What is your favorite professional football team?
“I like the Jets. Quinnen Williams, and really, I just grew up a Jets fan.”
Who is your favorite professional player right now?
“Quinnen Williams. I like how he’s versatile with it and how he uses his hands and how physical he is, how physical he uses his hands.”
Who has been the biggest role model for you in your life?
“Probably my dad. Just how he overcomes things and just how he goes to work every day in the morning and then comes home late at night. Just his work ethic, really.”
What are your favorite types of music? Do you have a favorite artist or song?
“I like hip hop, but my favorite rapper I’d say is G Herbo or Hot Boys.”
What is your favorite movie?
“‘Daddy Day Care.’”
If you could spend the day with anyone, past or present, who would it be and why?
“Right now, it’d be my dad. He’s in the hospital right now. So, right now, I’d spend it with my daddy.”
Where do you see yourself five years from now?
“Hopefully, I see myself in the NFL and maintain it with a family.”
What are three things on your bucket list?
“Married to Bri’Anna Tyler, make it to the NFL and retire my mom.”
Take us through the process that led to your commitment. What was that experience like for you?
“It came fast. All of the SEC and big schools came all within like three or four days, so that came real fast. But when the University of Florida offered me, it was a little different than the other SEC schools because I liked Florida. It was just different, and, of course, it made an impact on me and me going there, and actually seeing it was a little different also.”
Which school came in second for you and why?
“I would say Georgia. Even when I committed, they stilled stayed on it and didn’t jump off my trail. So, they just showed commitment in me, and I had a pretty good relationship with Coach Tray Scott and Coach Kirby [Smart].”
What was the craziest, strangest or weirdest moment of the recruiting cycle?
“I would say when Coach Kirby [Smart] and Coach [Dan] Mullen flew in almost at the same time. It was a little weird. I was just talking to them back-to-back, and then I think Coach [Nick] Saban came in that same day. So, having Alabama, Florida and Georgia all fly in at the same time was a little weird.”
If you could play a sport outside of football, which sport would it be?
“Basketball because I grew up a basketball player.”
What is your favorite football memory?
“It’d probably have to be when we beat Lake Gibson, and there was I think it was a couple of seconds left to go, and the lights shut off, and they were up. And then when the lights came back on, we beat them.”
What would you say are some of your greatest strengths as a football player? What do you need to work on?
“The thing I need to work on is coming off the ball a little bit faster and a little bit lower with my pad level. I would say my speed and versatility is the thing that is my strength.”
What is the most appealing part to you about the University of Florida?
“Just the turnaround, really. Coach Mullen’s turning things around, and him doing it so quick.”
What do you really need to work on the most when you get to Florida?
“I wouldn’t say I need to work on it the most, but I would say something I want to work on is my work ethic, just me changing from a high school work ethic to a college work ethic. So, that’s something I want to work on, me doing it without having to be told. Another thing is me just working on staying low, pad level.”
Who is the prospect that you have talked to the most from the Class of 2020?
“The person I talk to the most is Leonard Manuel because he’s still committed. But other than that, I talk to pretty much all of them. I talk to [Jaquavion Fraziars] a little bit. I talk to everybody.”
If you could pick any jersey number, what would it be?
“Nine. That’s just been my number. I like nine.”Who are you looking to room with once you get on campus?
“Johnnie Brown. We’ve just known each other for a long time and we got the same position and we act just alike, really.”
Which NFL player do you liken yourself to the most?
“I hear a lot. I hear [Carlos] Dunlap a lot, Quinnen Williams. It’s a lot of people, I would say, just because I play defensive tackle, but also play defensive end.”