Hello friends. Recruiting has been in the “theoretical” range for a while. Kids were committing and dropping from classes all over America, but there were no games. Until this week.
With 20 players in the 2017 recruiting class at this moment, Miami has one of the largest group of commits in America. And, that group showcased their talents well in HSFB week 1. How so? Let’s take a look
QB N’Kosi Perry led his Ocala (FL) Vanguard Knights to a 62-21 blowout win over Palatka. I wasn’t able to find stats from this game, but it’s fair to believe that Perry’s play was a big key to the point total and win. After Palatka went up 14-7 in the 2nd Quarter, Perry’s Vanguard team went on a 55-7 run to close out the game. That’s good, right?
QB Cade Weldon started his senior season with a loss, as his Tampa (FL) Jefferson team fell 25-20 to Tampa Bay Tech. Weldon’s stat line — 8/32, 2 TD, 2 INT — leaves a bit to be desired, but the game report states that there were upwards of 10 drops by Jefferson receivers. Weldon tried to engineer a last-drive comeback, but his receivers dropped all 4 passes, including a would-be chunk play of 30+ yards. Weldon’s last throw of the night was a Hail Mary that was intercepted by TBT, sealing the game.
RB Robert Burns showed some of the explosiveness that earned him a 4-star rating. The Miami (FL) Gulliver Prep star took the opening kickoff back 95 yards for a touchdown against Kissimmee (FL) Celebration.
That was the only HL for Burns that I could find for the game, which Gulliver dropped 28-23 to Celebration on a last second Touchdown.
WR Kevaughn Dingle had several catches including a leaping touchdown for Carol City (FL) as they faced Coral Gables. Dingle’s touchdown (which you can see here) came late in the 4th Quarter as Carol City was building a comeback against Gables. The catch came against 2018 Canes commit DB Gilbert Frierson, a top player in his recruiting clas. In the end, Carol City lost the game 16-13 in overtime
WR Evidence Njoku and Wayne Hills (NJ) have yet to play a game. They will open their season on September 2nd vs Pahokee (FL).
TE Brian Polendey and the Denton (TX) Guyer Wildcats overcame an early deficit to defeat Mansfield (TX) Lake Ridge 55-35. Polendey had 2 catches for 17 yards on the day, which is a lot considering Guyer completed 3 passes for 19 yards TOTAL on the night. He was integral as a blocker in the run game which rolled up 494 yards in the victory, averaging nearly 10 yards a pop.
OL Navaughn Donaldson and the Miami (FL) Central Rockets, 4-time defending State Champions in Florida’s 6A classification, defeated Clermont (FL) East Ridge 59-14. With a stable of backs gashing East Ridge all night long, I’m sure Donaldson and the OL had a big role in the victory.
OL Zach Dykstra and the Spirit Lake (IA) Indians won their season opener 33-21 over Lincoln Central.
OL Zalontae Hillery, ATH DeeJay Dallas and their Brunswick (GA) Glynn Academy Terrors bounced back from a season opening loss and defeated Ware County (GA) 17-10. Dallas, who plays QB in HS and profiles as a DB in college, had another long touchdown, much like he did last week. You wanna see it? Got you covered.
DT Jon Ford led the Dillard (FL) Panthers to a 37-12 win over Ft. Lauderdale (FL) Stranahan.
DE Jonathan Garvin started his season with a bang in the kickoff classic a week ago. He had 7 sacks, and a INT-TD vs Glades Central and FSU QB commit James Blackman. That performance didn’t carry over to the regular season opener, as Garvin’s Lake Worth (FL) Trojans lost to Palm Beach Lakes (FL) 24-20.
DE D.J. Johnson and his Sacramento (CA) Luther Burbank Titans — #9 in the Sacramento Bee’s local area rankings — had a rough go of it in their season opener. They were dominated from start to finish by #4 Clovis (CA) 36-0.
LB Waynmon Steed was a playmaker on defense for the previously mentioned Miami (FL) Central Rockets in their 59-14 victory over Clermont (FL) East Ridge.
LB Bradley Jennings Jr. led the Jacksonville (FL) Sandalwood Saints to a 35-6 victory over Miami (FL) Killian. Killian is a team that has been ravaged by transfers; nearly all their top players left to go to Miami (FL) Southridge this offseason. Regardless, this is a nice win for Sandalwood to open their 2016 season.
DB Trajan Bandy and ATH Christopher Henderson and the Miami (FL) Columbus Explorers defeated Miami (FL) Jackson 21-13. Jackson are coached by Lakatriona Brunson, the first female HS Football Coach in Florida history. Brunson played the role of “Bernice” on the reality show South Beach Tow from 2012-14, and has coached football on various levels for nearly 20 years.
DB Billy Gibson and Miami (FL) Southridge had a dogfight in their opener. They escaped with a 7-0 victory over Miami (FL) Edison in a game that was called 14 seconds before halftime due to lightning in the area of the stadium at which this game was played.
DB Brian Edwards led Miramar (FL) to a 28-7 victory over Hialeah (FL) Mater Academy. Mater features Florida DB commit Latavious Brini, and his 2019 RB brother Montavious Brini. Miramar stifled Mater the whole game long, holding Mater Academy to less than 100 yards of total offense. Edwards and Miramar’s vaunted “Darkside Defense” will have their toughest test of the year this week, as they will face former National #1 St. Thomas Aquinas fresh off their 27-23 loss to Miami (FL) Booker T. Washington.
P Zach Feagles, who plays FB for Ridgewodd (NJ) Maroons when not kicking, have several weeks before their season opener. They open on September 9th vs Hackensack (NJ).
That’s it for this week. We’ll be sure to check back in next week to see how the current Canes commits are faring in their 2016 seasons.