We're back an in action! Cameron Underwood here to get you all caught up on what's happened on the recruiting trail recently. That's enough preamble. Let's get down to business.
Who'd we get?
- It was a few weeks ago, but we pulled in my new recruiting man-crush: 4-star Safety Kiy Hester from New Jersey. I actually enjoyed doing the write up of his commitment, because I am so enamored with his skillset and, more than anything, his unadulterated agression. That's something we've been missing on the defense overall, and I think Hester will see the field right away as a freshman
- In addition to Hester, 3-star Safety Marques Gayot from Lake Worth, FL flipped his commitment from Louisville to Miami. Somehow, we dropped the ball and didn't put up a piece for this once. I will say here that Gayot has good skills, and profiles as an in the box Safety. Some say he could move down to OLB if he puts on enough weight, but I think any talk of that is premature. He bring added depth to a position of need, along with Hester.
- Since our cries for help at DT have apparently been heard by the staff (or, maybe, they just know what areas of the team need addressing), Golden and company secured the commitment of JUCO DT Calvin Heurtelou. The 3-star talent figures to come in an play immediately next season, as I wrote in my recap of his commitment
- It's been so long since one of these pieces that, while widely known and frequently discussed, I feel that I would be remiss to not mention 4-star St. Thomas Aquinas DT Anthony Moten and 3-star South Dade WR Tyre Brady as additions to this class. You can read our recaps on Moten's commitment here, and Brady's commitment here.
Who'd we lose?
This is obviously the least fun part of these articles, but sometimes in life you have to do things that aren't fun. Let's get to it:
- We didn't really LOSE this guy, but 5-star Miami Central RB Dalvin Cook didn't flip to UM when he dropped his UF commitment. He instead chose FSU. I know the "Golden doesn't recruit South Florida" crowd is angered with that one, and it makes sense. Cook is an ELITE talent, and he's going elsewhere. However, sometimes kids choose other schools. It happens.
- One we did lose out on is 4-star Dwyer WR Johnnie Dixon. He chose to follow Urban Meyer to that School in the State South of Michigan (sorry, my bias is showing and I don't care). Dixon said that he had decided long ago that he "needed to get away from home to become a man." And so, he's leaving South Florida. And, again, it happens like that sometimes.
- One that got the twitterverse buzzing was 4-star Deerfield Beach RB Brandon Powell stating, the day before enrolling at UM, that he would decide between UM and UF, and ultimately ending up at UF. Powell was a long standing Cane commit, and the fact that, 24hrs before he was due to enroll, he opened up his decision to a school with whom he had not communicated in nearly a year rubbed some the wrong way. In the end, he flipped. And we move on.
- After dominating at the U.S. Army All-American game, 5-star DT Travonte Valentine decommitted from Miami. There has been much talk of what the reasons for his decommitment were, but we'll leave those on message boards. He has announced his top 3 of LSU, Texas, and Miami, in that order. He's still on the board, but the Canes are clearly running behind. We'll talk more about him in a minute, though.
- Rounding out the decommitments (which we all knew would happen, we were just waiting to see who) were 3-star WR Dennis Turner and CB Nigel Bethel II. Turner, from Ft. Lauderdale HS, was recruited to be a CB, but always wanted to play on offense. He's still searching for a college destination. Bethel II, a teammate of UM commits 5-star DE Chad Thomas and 4-star DE/OLB Demetrius Jackson at Miami Booker T. Washington, flipped his commitment to Texas Tech.
- Last, but not least, was the news that 2013 signee WR Derrick Griffin did not qualify academically for Miami. He was working to get his ACT score up, and apparently that didn't happen. At this point, Griffin is undecided on his next step. But, whatever he chooses to do, it's clear now that he won't end up at Miami. All the best to that young man.