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Player Profile: Rayshawn Jenkins

Check out the player profile for Miami Senior Safety Rayshawn Jenkins!

NCAA Football: Florida Atlantic at Miami Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

High School Highlights (2011)

Jenkins was a solid three-star athlete coming out of Admiral Farragut Academy. During his junior season he played on the offense and defense starring at all the skill positions as well as playing center field in the secondary. During his senior year however, the do-it-all player was limited to only seven games due to an injury. His “top four” before he chose Miami were Alabama, Florida State and USF.

Freshman Season (2012)

As a freshman, Jenkins saw lots of time both on special teams and as the primary backup at the safety position. He was able to start two games while piling up a solid 27 tackles to go along with three pass break ups and one interception. Getting valuable experience early in his career definitely looked to set Jenkins up for a more prominent role going forward.

Sophomore Season (2013)

Heading into his sophomore season Jenkins looked to take on more of a starring role and he was able to lock down one of the two starting safety spots for all of the season (12 of 13 games). Jenkins was tasked with staying further back from the line of scrimmage, essentially to play a centerfield-like role. If an opponent was to try a deep pass Jenkins was tasked to roam sideline to sideline and make the play a low percentage opportunity or even pick off the attempt. For 2013, Jenkins had yet another solid season. In 2013 he almost doubled his tackles (up to 47) and was able to pick off three passes. Jenkins’ career trajectory was definitely trending up for the future.

Redshirt Sophomore Season (2014)

Not all life journeys are linear and straight to success. Jenkins unfortunately learned this lesson the hard way during the preseason of the 2014 campaign when he had an offseason surgery that sidelined him the entire year.

Redshirt Junior Season (2015)

With Jenkins back to full strength he almost immediately earned his starting position back in the spring of 2015. He did most of his damage early in the season as he totaled all three of his interceptions in the first four games of the year. The second half of the season saw Jenkins moved into more of a committee type role with Jamal Carter and others in the safeties grouping. Due to this Jenkins only started seven of the 13 games on the season. He did tie for fourth on the team in tackles at 52 though so he made a steady impact throughout the year.

Redshirt Senior Season (2016)

When Manny Diaz was brought on board to lead the defense, Jenkins’ role in the secondary changed slightly. Instead of playing primarily away from the line of scrimmage like before, he often times lined up near the line of scrimmage (i.e “in the box”) to confuse the opposition on what his responsibilities were on a given play. Due to out scheming opponents, Diaz’s defense thrived and so did Jenkins. With the senior laden talent throughout the entire secondary Jenkins has rotated with Jamal Carter and Jaquan Johnson for playing time. However, his impact has been felt throughout the season. On the season he hit a career high in tackles at 70, came down with a few more interceptions (two) and also got his first career sacks when making delayed blitzes.

Bowl Game Outlook

The coaching staff is going to rely heavily on Jenkins looking ahead to his final game in a Canes uniform. West Virginia mixes both the run and the pass well and stay balanced but as we’ve come to know about the Mountaineers, they love their vertical passing attack. It will be paramount for Jenkins to keep the center of the field, the deep center of the field, locked down come December 28th. If he can patrol the center of the field and potentially take those lanes away, Miami will be able to dictate on their defensive side of the field what works and what doesn’t for West Virginia.