Thirsty Thursday, guys! See everybody at Sandbar in the Grove later tonight!! (is that still a thing? Idk if that’s still a thing)
Anyways, let’s get into today’s News and Notes:
Miami needs to keep building momentum with a win against Virginia
For his weekly Op-Ed, SOTU contributor David Perez penned this wonderful piece looking at the importance of this week’s Canes-UVa game.
Miami's upcoming game against Virginia is critical to keep the program's momentum going, says @TheStateOfTheU https://t.co/fZy4e4sMLS— SB✯Nation CFB (@SBNationCFB) November 10, 2016
Yeah, it’s only 1 game in a 12 game season, but beating Virginia, a bad team who doesn’t have the talent or skill to compete with Miami, is absolutely necessary.
As David quoted in the above-linked piece, Canes DC Manny Diaz said it best “We’re knocking against great”. To take another step in that direction, a win against a bad Virginia team is required. Period.
2001 MIAMI HURRICANES ARE THE BEST CFB TEAM EVER SO STOP ASKING ABOUT IT!
You see the headline.
Antrel Rolle says 2001 Miami would CRUSH 2016 Alabama.— ESPNU (@ESPNU) November 9, 2016
Is he right? pic.twitter.com/8rv4gHt80B
Yes, Antrel is right. 01 Miami would beat 16 Bama. Easily. Period.
Canes Sports Enjoy Successful Early Signing Day
Wednesday was the first day of the early signing period for non-Football sports. On this day, several Miami Hurricanes teams got top tier players to sign their scholarship offers to be Canes, adding depth and talent across the board. A quick recap:
Women’s Basketball signed a top 15 class
#WelcomeToTheU to the five newest members of the family, who form one of the nation's top 15 recruiting classes! https://t.co/xWVw2oi79e— Canes Women's BBall (@CanesWBB) November 10, 2016
Ranked #14 in America heading into the 2016-17 season, Miami WBB signed 5 players in this class, all of whom are ranked top 25 at their position in their class. Coach Katie Meier and staff continue to build this team into a top tier program. Good stuff.
And, speaking of Canes WBB, former star Tamara James was elected Mayor of Dania Beach, FL on Tuesday.
Former UM basketball player Tamara James elected Dania Beach mayor. https://t.co/Xheck7Hmwp pic.twitter.com/1MoRVD1C64— Miami Herald Sports (@HeraldSports) November 9, 2016
Staying on the court, Jim Larrañaga and the Men’s Hoops team got 2 top 100 players to sign their scholarships on Wednesday. First was 5-7 PG Chris Lykes:
Proud to have Signed my NLI! @CanesHoops #CaneGang pic.twitter.com/gx3zTvXKlP— Chris Lykes (@IAm_Lykesdat) November 10, 2016
Don’t let Lykes’ 5’7” height fool you. This is an elite and EXPLOSIVE player who will be a great asset on this team.
Miami, sitting 5th in our ACC class rankings, makes it official with signing of top-75 guard Chris Lykes; ball of energy/toughness at the 1— Corey Evans (@coreyevans_10) November 9, 2016
You can learn more about him and see plenty of highlights in our Welcome to the U piece.
Joining Lykes in signing with Canes Hoops was 6’10” F Deng Gak. He, like Lykes, is a top 100 player in this class, and a big get for the Canes.
It's all about… #sUperman pic.twitter.com/42huRDCe6t— Deng Gak (@DengGak7) November 9, 2016
You can find out more about Gak, yes, including highlights, in our Welcome to the U piece.
The 3rd commit in this class for Canes Hoops, New Zealander F Sam Waardenburg, will be a mid-year enrollee. He’ll be on campus in December and join the team, but will not play until the 2017-18 season.
2017 recruit Sam Waardenburg will sign a grant in aid & join Miami at the semester break, per a source. Will redshirt.— Evan Daniels (@EvanDaniels) November 9, 2016
Miami continues to recruit several players for the final scholarship slot in this class. That will probably continue until the normal/later signing, which takes place in the spring.
Even more signings came, as Canes Baseball got many of their top players to sign on Wednesday.
We've got some @CanesBaseball signees over here! Coming from Archbishop McCarthy (L to R): 1B Alex Toral, P Daniel Federman, P/3B Joe Perez. pic.twitter.com/Tgm5fUNUhg— David Furones (@DavidFurones_) November 9, 2016
Blessed.... Proud to be a cane pic.twitter.com/LvHWrGqIYw— Mark Vientos (@MarkVientos_5) November 9, 2016
In those tweets, 1B Alejandro Toral and SS Mark Vientos have signed with Miami. Those are the top 2 players in this recruiting class for Miami, so getting them to sign is only half the battle.
In June, I wrote a MLB signing and 2017 recruiting/MLB look ahead. In the piece, which you can see here, I talked about the Canes commits, now signees, who could potentially be drafted in the top 8 rounds — the area of the draft which allows for higher signing bonuses where 99.95% of players taken sign contracts and leave or skip school. Leading the list of MLB Draft prospects expected to be taken that high? Toral and Vientos.
Full disclosure: I do not expect Toral or Vientos to ever wear a Canes Baseball uniform. Like so many before them, they’re far too good to set foot on campus. I fully expect both to be taken by the end of the 3rd round in next June’s MLB draft at the absolute latest.
But, for the time being, it’s a great thing that they’ve signed with Miami. Now, we just have to hope — even against overwhelming evidence to the contrary — that Toral and Vientos, among other top baseball signees, make it to campus next year.
As you can see from this section (which admittedly went longer than I’d originally planned), the future of Canes Athletics is bright.
Been a couple days since the last News and Notes, so let’s jump right into the rest of the links, shall we?
Ricky Paolillo was back with another week of ACC Power Rankings.
Daniel Tummeley celebrated the end of the Canes’ 4-game losing streak.
Mike Grunewald has your Sunshine State 7 rankings of all the FBS teams in Florida. Canes are moving up, but still a ways away from the top spot.
Justin Dottavio aka Ironman Football handled some X’s and O’s via mailbag. Be sure you check that out.
Matt Porter of the Palm Beach Post had an interesting article detailing how Virginia tried, and failed, to hire Mark Richt. Twice.
Susan Miller Degnan of the Miami Herald wrote about Stan Dobard’s transition to Defensive End.
Christy Cabrera-Chirinos of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel talked about DE Demetrius Jackson’s return from injury, which caused him to miss the last 3 games.
Shandel Richardson of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel wrote about how Miami’s freshmen are playing beyond their years for the Canes.
CBS Sports put out their ACC Hoops preview. Miami is ranked 5th overall here, substantially higher than in the preseason ACC poll.
WR Ahmmon Richards was named to Pro Football Focus’ CFB team of the week.
Alums TE Jimmy Graham and C Brandon Linder were named to Pro Football Focus’ NFL Dream Team from week 9.
Several Canes, led by Brad Kaaya, listed by Matt Miller of Bleacher Report in his new top 300 NFL draft prospects.
Canes alums Greg Olsen and Calais Campbell win midseason awards as best TE and DT, respectively, from Pro Football Focus.
Aaron Donald and Doug Baldwin highlight PFF's Midseason All-Pro Team:https://t.co/17MT7N7Nr2 pic.twitter.com/OSBm6DWRUS— Pro Football Focus (@PFF) November 10, 2016
Looking ahead to bowl season? Well then, you’re not alone.
A potential Florida-Miami matchup? What a friendly heartwarming reunion that would be in Jacksonville.— TaxSlayer Bowl (@taxslayerbowl) November 9, 2016
Wooooo buddy. Sign me up for that. SIGN ME UP RIGHT NOW!!!!!!!
If you missed Tuesday’s News and Notes, click the link below. (RIP, Bryan Pata)
Miami Hurricanes News and Notes: Pictures, remembering Bryan Pata, and more #Canes #TheU https://t.co/7z7BSK7Nc2 pic.twitter.com/3kDLmzROVZ— StateOfTheU.com (@TheStateOfTheU) November 8, 2016
That’s it. See you in the Grove later. Drinks* on me.
(*Water only. Ice extra)