Standing at 6’5 and weighing in at 335 lbs, Miami Central high school senior Navaughn Donaldson is a mountain on the offensive line.
This big dude (55) is miami commit Navaughn Donaldson pic.twitter.com/ftDXFoIlP7— Rob Cassidy (@Cassidy_Rob) October 1, 2016
Donaldson currently ranks as the 13 offensive tackle in the nation according to 247sports.com, and is the number 83 ranked overall player on their composite list. Donaldson is the leader of an offensive that has produced over 1400 rushing yards already this season, and has helped the Rockets get off to a 6-1 start.
Recruiting analysts believe he is even better than his #83 ranking, and many believe he will be a day 1 starter for the ‘Canes.
Donaldson’s size is a big reason for optimism amongst fans, and his constant dominance on the line of scrimmage has fans excited. Navaughn has pounded defensive lineman at the line of scrimmage, and has recorded jaw-dropping blocks at the high school level.
His power is a factor that will provide immediate support and booster Miami’s offensive line; but most importantly, provide a sense of stability the group has lacked in the past. Although the unit put forth multiple good performances early in the year, the line has been maligned by many fans for their performances in big games.
Despite the fact that nearly the entire o-line returned in 2016, the group is very young, and could use depth at various positions such as tackle. Young players such as Tyree St. Louis have had to step up in past years despite their young age, and if Miami wants to regain their dominance up front, keeping Donaldson home is a step in the right direction.
The Hurricanes want to run the ball through run-pass options (RPOs), and Navaughn has experience blocking for a run oriented scheme. Although Miami’s offense is much different than the offense he is currently under at Miami Central, Donaldson provides an edge Miami will benefit from once he steps on campus.
Many analysts believe Donaldson would be getting a significant amount of playing time if he was at Miami this year, which speaks to the perception he has created.
Mark Richt’s offenses have run the ball very efficiently with backs like Knowshon Moreno and Todd Gurley in the past, and the veteran head coach has proved he can have success with a dominant offensive front.
Donaldson is the type of athlete Miami needs to keep home in order to get to where they want to be up front, and his commitment has helped Miami greatly throughout the process. Navaughn is simply an immediate difference maker, and if his play translates to the next level, Donaldson will be a lineman to reckon with from day 1.