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Recruiting Radar: January 23rd Official Visit Preview

Another weekend is upon us, and with it come more official visits. With just 2 weeks left in this cycle, the sprint to National Signing Day continues. Let's take a look at who will be on campus.

Fast rising DT Kevin Scott is visiting Coral Gables. Can the Canes make a push to land him?
Fast rising DT Kevin Scott is visiting Coral Gables. Can the Canes make a push to land him?

Last week, the Miami Hurricanes hosted 18 players on official visits. Obviously, after such a packed OV weekend, there was plenty of chatter about what happened and the reactions.

This week, Miami is set to host 6 visitors, and each one is a target that Miami is closely involved with. Without any further ado, let's look at who will be on campus.

Canes Targets

DT Kevin Scott (6'5" 280lbs) - arguably the most coveted late rising prospect in this entire class, Scott has moved to the top of the Canes' wishlist. He received an in-home visit on the first day after the dead period. That's the same day that Al Golden visited 5-star players John Houston and Rasheem Green in the LA area. Scott quickly received an offer and set up an official visit.

Miami wasn't the only team to show increased interest, however. The USC Trojans offered Scott earlier this week, and many think they're the team to beat. In fact, USC has 88% of current predictions on 247Sports' Crystal Ball for Scott. (Ole Miss has the other 12%, for those wondering)

Once a basketball player who has only completed 1 full year of HS football, Scott is far from a finished product. However, he has the size, athleticism, and potential to be a very good player down the road. This will be a very tough pull, to say the least. And, for there to be any chance, this weekend's visit has to be amazingly spectacularly stupendous.

DE Shelton Johnson (6'5" 220lbs) - A tall and thin player who will need to add size and strength at the collegiate level, Johnson excels at one thing: rushing the passer. This is a skill that is lacking on the roster, and adding Johnson could help to fill that void.

Johnson is also a South Florida product, and we know how everyone loves those players (and with good reason; the talent level in SoFLA is arguably the highest of any area in America). like the previously mentioned Scott, Johnson may not be able to contribute from day 1, but adding him to the roster would increase the level of talent and athleticism on the roster.

Getting Johnson to commit may be a tall task, however. 100% of predictions on 247Sports' Crystal Ball have him heading to FSU. Hopefully, for Miami's sake, this weekend's visit will be a step towards making those predictions false.

QB Evan Shirreffs (6'6" 200lbs) - Like Scott, Shirreffs is another player who has seen his recruitment take a positive turn after the season. He's a tall player (which OC James Coley clearly prefers) but needs to add weight at the collegiate level. Shirreffs' best trait is his accuracy. He's arguably the most accurate HS QB that I've ever seen. And, if you can be accurate with the ball, positive things can happen.

Shirreffs won't push for early playing time, but he could provide quality depth behind Brad Kaaya and Malik Rosier at QB. He's another developmental player, and fits exactly what Miami is looking for in this class. Having already lost 4-star Dwayne Lawson on the heels of Kaaya's Freshman All-American season, bringing in a prospect like Shirreffs is the right move. Star players won't come to sit for years behind Kaaya.

Shirreffs is on record as saying that a Miami offer "would mean everything." That only leaves one question: will he be offered? Shirreffs has offers from Columbia and Virginia Military Institute, and has taken an official visit to Georgetown. Easily the biggest name team who has shown interest, it remains to be seen if Miami pulls the trigger and offers him a scholarship. If that Canes offer is going to happen, the safe bet is that it would happen during this weekend's official visit.

Canes Commits

WR Lawrence Cager (6'5" 195lbs) - Cager, who committed at U.S. Army All-American game is the commit whose visit will garner the most attention. Coming fresh off a visit to Alabama, his other finalist before his announcement, Cager will have a chance to meet and interact with players and coaches on his visit to Coral Gables.

Cager's size is his biggest tool, but he has very good athletic skills to go along with that. He's a size mismatch on almost all DBs, and he would add to the growing cadre of tall WR's at the U.

Not only has Cager been all Miami after his commitment, he's reportedly been recruiting other players to join him in Miami. He even came up with an alter ego for this endeavor: Coach Cager.

Tweets and talk are great. But a strong visit will go a long way to locking Cager up for this class. And that's exactly what I'll be watching for over the course of this weekend.

CB Michael Jackson (6'2" 190lbs) - A big corner in the Ladarius Gunter mold, Jackson is a player who committed back in the fall. He, like Gunter, is from Alabama, and will be taking his first visit to campus this weekend.

With just 3 players committed at DB in this class, locking up Jackson, a standout from Spain Park HS, is essential. He's been solid ever since his commitment, and figures to be even more firm after this weekend.

DE/DT Richard McIntosh (6'4" 270lbs) - Finally, a DT. Well....kinda. McIntosh, already 270lbs in high school, is a versatile defender who figures to flex between DE and DT once he adds weight and strength in college. McIntosh also plays basketball for his HS (starting center for a 22-0 team) which is a testament to his agility and athleticism.

Another local South Florida product, McIntosh has active hands, and a high motor, both of which are things that should serve him well at the collegiate level. McIntosh is incredibly solid, and will only be taking 1 official visit: this weekend's trip to The U.

Other Visits to Watch

Miami isn't the only place that Canes commits and targets will be visiting this week. Here are some of the other visits scheduled for players who Miami is connected to:

  • RB commit Jordan Scarlett - Florida. There was A LOT of talk that Scarlett was looking to flip in recent weeks, with Florida being a popular team linked in that conversation. After a stellar visit to Coral Gables last week, Scarlett has said he's more solid with his commitment to Miami. Yet and still, his final 2 visits will be to Florida this week and Florida State next week. While I'm more confident his sticks than I was once, this, again, is the storyline that I'm following closest.
  • Speaking of Jordan Scarlett, I'm gonna mention another visit. Not one that he took, but one he received. On Thursday night, coaches from Florida State had an in-home visit with Scarlett and family. Scarlett is scheduled to visit FSU on January 30th. We'll talk more about that next week, but I just wanted to be sure to mention that now.
  • OL target Fredrick Johnson - Florida. A teammate of soon-to-be-enrolled LB Charles Perry, Johnson is thought to be a heavy lean towards Miami. He'll visit UF this week to see if Gainesville is the place for him. Heading into this visit, Miami still stands as the overwhelming favorite here.
  • RB commit Mark Walton - Georgia and West Virginia. Yes, two visits. First, mid-week to Georgia (completed by the time this publishes), then weekend to West Virginia, for those wondering how that works. Walton has been rock solid throughout his recruitment, and while he's still taking visits, I think he'll be in this class.
  • WR target Antonio Callaway - West Virginia. Callaway will join his teammate Walton in Morgantown. Callaway recently named his 3 finalists: Alabama, Miami, and West Virginia. This visit will go a long way to deciding his future destination.
  • WR target Daylon Charlot - Arizona State. Still thought to be a Bama lean, the once-committed Charlot left Tuscaloosa without recommitting to the Crimson Tide. He continues his travels to Tempe this week before heading to Miami next week.
  • WR commit Terrell Chatman - Arizona State. I think it's safe to say that ASU wants another WR in this class. Chatman joins Charlot on this visit, and both will travel to Coral Gables for their OV to Miami next week. Chatman is being heavily pursued, and a good visit to Miami net week may end his recruitment.
  • DT target Rasheem Green - Arizona State. Yet another player going to Tempe this weekend, 5-star DT Green joins Charlot, Chatman, and others. Green has said all 4 of his finalists have a good shot at landing him, with USC, Arizona State and Oregon joining Miami in pursuit of this talented interior DL.
  • WR target Jayson Stanley (UGA commit) - UCF. Stanley, who recently scheduled a visit to Miami on January 30th, may be ripe for a flip. He'll visit Orlando this week before heading to Coral Gables next week.
  • DE target Russel Ude (Cal commit) - Cal. Ude, who enjoyed his visit to Coral Gables last week, heads to Berkeley this week. He said that even with a positive visit to Miami, he's still committed to Cal. This visit should effectively end his recruitment.
  • OLB target Saleem Brightwell - Pitt. New coach Pat Narduzzi is on a mission to beef up the Panthers' defense, and will put the full-court press on Brightwell. His recruitment will probably go a bit longer, but expect a decision before National Signing Day.
As always, updates will follow after the visit weekend.

Go Canes