We’re almost done guys! This is the last section of player to review in the 2013 recruiting class. Over the last four years we’ve seen quite a lot from this class. We had one first round pick in Artie Burns, we’ve had a record setting receiver in Stacy Coley and even a few “diamonds in the rough.” However, Golden also had lots of misses in this class as well. Some players didn’t even make it to campus or were quickly booted out of the program because of their own personal issues. Let’s close out this series and take one final look back on what the signing class that was in 2013.
Devante Bond, #13 OLB JUCO, Roseville California
This recruiting class is a killer man... So much research... I think of the four years I’ve been doing these “look backs” this class has to have been the most labor intensive. I digress...
Similar to Sunny Odogwu in the last piece, Devante Bond didn’t start playing football until his senior season in high school. Instead of going directly to division one like Odogwu did however, Bond decided to work on his craft at Sierra Community College in California. On signing day Bond committed to Miami but as the admission office combed through his transcript they realized that Bond was one course shy of being able to qualify at Miami. Instead of going back for an extra semester to fulfil his commitment, Bond signed on with Oklahoma.
During Bond’s junior and senior seasons for the Sooners the best term that NFL.com used for his play was “that he showed flashes.” In his junior season Bond was a backup outside linebacker, he subbed in occasionally. Bond accounted for 29 tackles and four tackles for loss in 2014. During his senior season though, Bond was able to start five games and amassed 43 tackles, seven tackles for loss and three sacks. He missed the last four games due to an ankle injury in 2015.
Due to his perceived potential the Tampa Bay Buccaneers drafted Bond in the sixth round of the 2016 draft. Unfortunately, due to an injury, Bond was placed on IR. He has not recorded any stats for the season.
Hunter Knighton, #60 DT, Princeton New Jersey
ESPN rated and evaluated Knighton as a two-way player but listed him as a defensive tackle in his profile. Many other recruiting services and the Miami coaching staff saw Knighton as an offensive lineman though. Knighton was recruited by many of non-power 5 programs besides Miami. Per his profile, he took four official visits: Boston College, Purdue, Boise State and one to Miami.
Over the last four years at Miami, Knighton hasn’t participated much in actual on field action. The most notable thing that has occurred for him was unfortunately an injury that proved to be life threatening. During a 2014 preseason practice session he suffered a stroke on the actual practice field and had to be rushed to a hospital. He was able to recover after almost a year of rehab and healing and was able to return to the practice field in 2015. Due to this remarkable achievement, to be able to come back and play the game he loves, Knighton was awarded the Brian Piccolo Award as well as the Orange Bowl Courage Award.
At the end of the 2016 season (November 23rd to be precise) Knighton made the current coaching staff aware that he intended to transfer after the 2016 season had ended. The reasoning was mainly for playing time. Due to redshirting he has one year of eligibility left and will look to possibly play at the lower ranks to gain immediate playing time.
Ryheem Lockley, #129 Athlete, Saluda Virginia
Here’s another player Golden took a flier on because of his raw athletic talent. Here’s also another player that failed to make an impact for coach Golden at Miami.
Lockley was an elite basketball player as well as high ceiling football recruit from Virginia. Due to being so raw and having worrisome grades he was rated a low three-star prospect. Lockley had offers from the three in state schools (UVA, VT and ODU) as well as West Virginia. After he put his pen to paper to sign his letter of intent to Miami both the admissions office and the Lockley camp realized he didn’t have the grades to enroll. Lockley ended up at Fork Union Military Academy which is a prep school, NOT a junior college. This is essentially a half step between college and high school. He’d be able to do a year at FUMA and then have all of his eligibility at the next level stay intact.
Even though Lockley had to go the prep route, Miami still kept the door open for him to sign in the 2014 season. However, he decided to change his mind and verbally committed to Marshall University. Maybe it was to be closer to home or maybe he still didn’t have the grades after a year of prep school but in the end he didn’t sign with Miami. I did a little more research to see how Lockley has been playing over the last two seasons and have yet to find any information to state that he’s played in the college ranks. Per ESPN, he “committed” in the 2014 recruiting class but never actually “signed” with Marshall. Besides that morsel of information, the trail goes cold.
Ray Lewis III, #136 Athlete, Lake Mary Florida
We’re now at the last recruit for the 2013 class: Ray Lewis III. I’d be curious to know if coach Golden wanted to sign the younger Lewis or had to sign Lewis due to his father’s impact on the University. If you’re not connecting the dots, Lewis III is the son of Miami legend Ray Lewis.
Lewis III was a running back coming through the high school ranks but when he got to Miami was switched to cornerback. This was probably due to team needs at the position as well as his overall size (5’9’’ and 190 pounds). His college recruitment by other schools was non-existent, to be honest. Miami was his only offer per ESPN. Now, was this because of his talents or because other programs figured he was a shoe in at the U? We’ll never know.
Due to changing positions Lewis was redshirted his first year at Miami. During his second season he didn’t see any playing time and had a discipline infraction or two which led to a few suspensions. After his redshirt freshman season he decided to transfer to the FCS ranks to seek a new change in scenery and possibly more playing time. He decided to transfer to Coastal Carolina. I did digging on the CC website and could not find any stats for Lewis. It doesn’t look like he’s broken their starting 22 yet.
Well, there you have it. Kind of like how the class ranking started with Derrick Griffin and a few others, it ends on a downer. Let’s look at the list of players we’ve reviewed and see how they’ve all done, shall we:
Will Be Remembered as an All-Time Great
Played/has been at Miami all Four Years (or years eligible)
Left or got Kicked out of the Program
—>Ray Lewis III
Did not Play at Miami
The striking number on the list above is “11.” 11 is the number of players who did not or aren’t finishing up their college careers at Miami. 19 total players were signed. The attrition there is unbelievable. One other pertinent player to keep in mind on this list is Gus Edwards. There have been rumblings the last few weeks that he may transfer out to get more playing time. The end number could tick up one more to 12 players. We’re seeing the after effects now as Miami was desperately thin at linebacker and offensive linemen. You don’t have to look further than this class to see why.
What do you guys think? Leave your comments below!