Recruiting Radar: QB targets in 2017
A position unlike any other gets its own profile, as we take an exclusive look at Miami's QB targets for the 2017 recruiting class.
The Mark Richt era of Miami football is underway, and that will continue this weekend as the staff hosts the first Junior Day of the 2017 cycle.
Junior Days are on-campus events where top talent gets to interact with coaches, see the campus, and generally begin to build the mental picture of them being a Cane.
With The U being in the absolute best recruiting hotbed in all of America, Miami has the ability to get more top players on campus than anyone else. This is big for Richt and company this year, as they work to rebuild the cache of Miami and, more importantly, A MIAMI SCHOLARSHIP OFFER with top tier players from South Florida.
Over the course of the past decade, a Miami offer has gone from something that was prized and hoped for to something that is (largely) meaningless and expected by every HSFB player within a 2 hour radius of UM's campus. Plain and simple, that has to change. And, with a new staff who comes with an impressive resume, the first step towards that is this week's Junior Day.
Junior Days are usually invite-only events, where all the prospects are hand selected by the staff to be in attendance. An invite, like a UM scholarship offer, is not something everybody gets, so this event already has an air of exclusivity.
The list of players who are said to be in attendance for the initial Junior Day is impressive. Here are some of the players who will be in Coral Gables on Saturday:
- 3-star QB James Blackman (who I spoke about in today's QB target preview)
- Unranked WR Quantino Allen (Blackman's #1 target, WHO IS FAAAAAAAAAAAAAST)
- 3-star S Amari Carter (recently offered; plays for top area team that has had several players sign with P5 teams in recent years)
- 3-star S Brian Edwards (great length and instincts; comes from program that has sent several players to UM in recent years)
- Unranked DT Rashad Colson (recently offered)
- 3-star S Billy Gibson (Canes commit)
- 3-star CB Shawn Davis (teammate of recent commit Billy Gibson, 2nd time on campus in 10 days, will not be a 3-star for long, Great offer list)
- 3-star S Grant Delpit (from TX; ranking sure to increase through spring; one of hottest prospects in America with 16 offers since National Signing Day)
- 3-star WR Kevaughn Dingle (top WR target, averaged 29+ yards per catch in 2015)
- 4-star Justin Broiles (from Oklahoma; touring the Southeast right now -- took an unofficial to UF on the 18th)
- 4-star OL Navaughn Donaldson (Canes commit)
- 4-star S Cyrus Fagan (National recruit with 29 offers)
- 4-star RB Kyshaun Bryan (formerly of American Heritage, now at St. Thomas; a bit on the small side but he can FLY)
- 3-star ATH Shawn Smith (recently named Miami his favorite; could commit; VERY FAST)
- 4-star DL Jon Ford (Canes commit)
- unranked DL Jordan Wright (Ford's HS teammate with length, standout basketball player for one of area's best programs)
- 3-star OL Kai-Leon Herbert (played for Mike Rumph at American Heritage)
- 4-star OL Tedarell Slaton (American Heritage, MAJOR National Recruit, top target at OL, could be a 5-star by the end of the cycle)
- Unranked LB James Houston (played for Mike Rumph at American Heritage; ranking will rise very soon)
- 4-star ATH Bruce Judson (top national talent, former OSU commit)
- 4-star LB Santino Marchiol (IMG academy by way of Colorado)
- 4-star LB De'Andre Wilder (my #1 target at LB)
- 4-star S Daniel Wright (major national recruit)
- 3-star RB Bentavious Thompson (Canes commit)
- 3-star LB Waynmon Steed (Canes commit)
- 5-star DL Jarez Parks (Patrick Bethel's cousin)
- and many more (and, as always, the list above can change at a moment's notice)
Recruiting analyst Larry Blustein has been following the players and scene in South Florida for more than 40 years. He is part of the team at South Florida HS Sports, and has put together an impressive list of the top 75 SoFLA players for 2017.
When you look at Blustein's list and the list of Junior Day attendees, you'll see a lot of crossover. This is not by mistake. Mark Richt has openly stated he wants to do about 90% of recruiting in the South Florida area. And, this is a good step towards making that a reality.
In previous years, Junior Days yielded several commits for the Hurricanes. This could very well be the case from tomorrow's event as well. And, even if it doesn't, a solid day for these top players on campus could start to have Miami become a more prominent school in their collective and individual recruitments.
That's it for now. Hopefully, I'll be back this weekend and/or Monday with some good commit news for you, if all goes well on Saturday.