I had planned on waiting until after Spring to do this, but instead decided to get right to it with the early 2018 Class preview.
Be prepared to be wowed fellas, as I've stated much throughout the year last Summer, this could possibly be Miami's best class in almost a decade!
This is the kind of recruiting it takes to win Conference Championships & compete in the playoffs, with how we've assembled a great 2016 & 2017 class loaded with Elite caliber playmakers on both sides of the ball, #Storm18 will be the final piece to the puzzle.
Artur Sitkowski - 6'4 220lbs 4-star QB from out of Old Bridge NJ, is a highly rated QB with a great arm & all the physical tools you like to see in a Pro-style QB. Has been recruited by Coach Richt & staff since his Sophomore year, he's visited Miami twice last year, first in July & later in the year as well. He was very impressed with Miami's academic program during his visit, he met with the Deans & the School President (similar to what Miami did with Amari Carter & Lorenzo Lingard), and he's made clear he has legit interest in Miami. He's also slated to visit Miami on Feb 25th, is supposed to be making his commitment announcement some time between now & the Summer, as of now Miami is real high on his list, he really likes Miami & has a good relationship with Coach Richt. However, hometown Rutgers, along with Duke, Florida, PSU, Tenn & others also have a great chance at landing him.
He's transferring to IMG Academy for his Senior Season and is looking to have a much better year than he did his Junior year. His Junior season was a huge red flag (in terms of on the field play), he finished the season with just 1100+yds 5TD's & 10INT's, he has 15INT's for his high school career to just 21TD's. I'm sorry but that's alarming to me. That's not a good TD to INT ratio at all & what concerns me the most is him transferring to IMG he'll look great surrounded by all that talent they have there, but that could make his Senior season (which hasn't happened yet lol) look like fools gold.
Similar to what we saw with Jake Allen transferring from Cardinal Gibbons to St. Thomas Aquinas, he didn't look anything special with lesser talent around him, then you put him on a powerhouse team like STA & they still win the State title, despite Allen's porous play. Look, I trust the staff wholeheartedly, so if they want Sitkowski then I won't 2nd guess them at all, however if I'm being completely honest that Junior year is a huge eye opener for me as far as his evaluation is concerned.
Casey Thompson - 6'1 186lbs 4-star QB from Southmoore Oklahoma, the son of former University of Oklahoma QB Charles Thompson, talented Dual-Threat QB with a very strong arm, accurate passer & great naturally gifted athlete running a 4.55 40. Was incredibly productive against very good 6A comp in Oklahoma.
He's had a terrific High School career thus far, he finished his Junior year with 2,730yds Passing 28TD's & just 5INT's, along with 586yds Rushing & 14TD's. He's put up a staggering 6,580yds Passing 70TD's & just 17INT's, to go with 2,150yds Rushing & 39TD's in 3 years as the starting QB.
He is the quintessential Dual-Threat QB that Coach Richt has been recruiting a lot more in these last two classes, due to the fact these are the types of athletes more suited to fit his RPO Offense & is simply apart of the direction the game is moving in... Simply put, it's a smart decision to recruit more athletic QB's, Defenses are faster than ever & it creates so much difficulty in defending against your teams Rushing attack when you have a QB that can actually run.
Miami is very high on Casey, Coach Jon Richt has visited him twice since he came down to Miami last Summer for Paradise Camp, once back in September & more recently in November. At Paradise camp, Casey really raised eyebrows of the staff with his confidence & willingness to compete, he excelled in the throwing drills with a very nice quick release & delivered the ball with velocity, he showed that he had the ability to make all the throws & did fairly well in the scrimmage game. Expect more unofficial visits to campus from Casey throughout the year before his season starts, he'll also most likely be making a return to Paradise Camp again this Summer which will be huge for us to get him committed. His interest in us is legit & we have a very good shot at landing him. In fact, I actually prefer him over Sitkowski.
His top schools are Miami, Oklahoma (OU already has 2018 QB Cameron Rising committed which is great for us), Texas, Clemson, Ok St, UNC & Va Tech.
Here's some of his impressive film:
Dorian Thompson-Robinson - 6'2 190lbs 4-star QB from Nevada powerhouse Bishop Gorman, another very skilled versatile Dual-Threat QB with great athletic ability, has a good arm & is one of the highest rated QB's in nation. He's originally from South Carolina, but plays for the West Coast version of STA/IMG in Bishop Gorman, which also produced 5-star QB Tate Martell & one of the best Baseball players in the MLB Bryce Harper.
He was offered by Miami back in October, has since been visited multiple times by both Coach Jon Richt & Coach Todd Hartley. He was originally supposed to commit to AZ State, but decided against it, what was interesting about that situation was that his highly touted teammate 4-star TE Brevin Jordan (who you'll learn more about later in the post) had planned on both committing to ASU together, but since DTR didn't Brevin didn't either. Basically, they're both being recruited by every major program in the country as a package deal, they've both been very vocal about wanting to play together at the next level, so teams have taken notice & recruited them as such.
Miami is no different, the staff is very high on DTR & Brevin, and are pitching them on the idea of playing & winning championships together. Both like Miami a lot, but Brevin likes us a lot more... DTR's top schools as of now are Michigan, UCLA, Miami, TAMU, Oregon, Texas & many others. His mother is a Michigan grad & he already has a great relationship with Coach Harbaugh, Michigan has the lead as of now, but this is a very high profile kid & as with many of those types things are always subject to change with his recruitment as he takes more visits and Schools push harder for him. Miami is definitely in it, but this is one that won't be over until NSD Feb 2018.
Adrian Martinez - 6'2 200lbs 4-star QB from Clovis West Frenso CA, Dual-threat QB & current Cal commit.
Adrian is another very talent Dual-threat QB who utilizes both his running & great throwing ability to his advantage, throws Bullet passes & is best when throwing on the run. A very dangerous homerun threat with his feet, he's the kind of QB that is perfect for a Spread-Option Offense, if the LB/DE bites on the RB he'll keep the ball & take to the house with cat like quickness... Reminds me of a Mariota style QB, not as good right away but has that kind of potential.
Has had a good High school career thus far & finished his Junior year with 2,562yds Passing 25TD's & just 2INT's, with 1,462yds Rushing & 14TD's.
As stated earlier, is currently committed to Cal, but committed to Cal under their previous Coach Sonny Dykes who was recently fired, which means while he may be committed now do not expect him to stay committed to them throughout his Senior year. Miami is really high on Adrian, he was offered by us back in October & Coach Jon Richt has visited him twice since being offered, Coach Mark Richt visited Adrian at his school back on 1/19 while also on a West coast trip visiting DJ Johnson. He hold offers from most PAC-12 schools & is being heavily pursued by both Oregon & Washington.
Jarren Williams - 6'3 211bs 3-star QB from South Gwinnett Georgia, Pro-style QB currently committed to Kentucky.
Jarren is a big physically gifted QB with a strong arm, and while he may be stereotyped as a Dual-threat, make no mistake he's a Pro-style that can run if necessary. Very accurate passer with a nice arm & to me his best quality is the fact he's a Coaches son, his father Coaches for Clark Atlanta... What does that mean? It means he's a smart, heady kid who is coachable, studious & won't have any shenanigans with his recruitment. (Coach Brown is the primary recruiter for him, which means we're sending our homerun hitter if we really want him lol).
Jarren plays for a very good 7A school in Georgia being South Gwinnett, and has had a great 2 years as their starter. He finished his Junior season with 2,618yds Passing 26TD's & just 4INT's with 425yds Rushing & 9TD's.
He's currently committed to Kentucky, but hold offers from Miss St, Mizzou, Tennessee, South Carolina, FSU, UNC & Oregon. We offered him back in November.
Here's his film:
Justin Rogers - 6'4 205lbs 4-star QB out of Bossier City Louisiana, Dual sport athlete that plays Football & Basketball, big physically built QB with prototypical size & is incredibly gifted with talent. Delivers the ball with great velocity, is a natural thrower & has an absolute Cannon for an arm. Is one of the highest rated QB's in the nation, Dual-threat with tremendous ability to be great at both throwing & passing.
Plays for one of the best schools in Louisiana (Parkway HS) against very good 5A comp & lead his team to a State title game (although they lost). Plays on the same team with one of the best WR's in the nation in 4-star Justin Marshall. Had a great Junior season with 3,021yds Passing 31TD's & 8INT's, with 701yds Rushing & 11TD's.
He was offered by Miami just recently on 2/10, LSU has the lead with him obviously, but is also high on TCU, UGA & few others. He's the kind of prospect you might have a long shot with, but you go all out for regardless. Needs to be invited down for Paradise Camp this year in July & is the type of prospect you recruit til the very end.
Joe Milton - 6'5 210lbs QB from out of Olympia HS in Orlando (same school as current Miami FS Jeff James), big tall dual sport athlete that plays both Basketball & Football, has started for Olympia since his Sophomore year & played really well against very good 8A comp in Florida. Has a very big arm, strong thrower, great on the move, delivers the ball well under pressure & tons of potential and upside. Reminds me of a more athletic version of Byron Leftwich (think of Leftwich from Marshall or his High School days, not JAX lol).
Joe is a prospect I've kept up on his recruitment since his Sophomore year, he was mostly an under the radar player who is now gaining more attention & offers heading into his Senior year this August. He impressed at NC St, USF & FSU camps last year with his raw ability to really sling it, as I said he has a big powerful arm & can throw the deep ball with the best of them.
Has progressed a great deal from his Soph to is Junior year, he finished the season with 1,543yds Passing 17TD's & 7INT's.
He's the prototype Pro-style QB, he's not a Dual-threat runner at all! Despite how he may be listed on 247, the kid has only rushed for 104yds in 2 seasons as the Starting QB at Olympia... Simply put, he does not run, but he's not slow or a statue in the pocket either. What I like most about him is that he's already taking 5-7 step drops from under Center as a Junior, he's running bootleg play actions & his offense has a semblance of Pro-style formations (It's very rare to see HS offenses do this).
Miami has been evaluating him for some time now, they officially offered him last week in early February & I can tell you he was genuinely happy to get that offer, which is his biggest offer to date. His cousin is 2019 Miami commit 4-star CB Akeem Dent from Pahokee. Milton imo is a somewhat of a project, he's got great upside & could blow up big time his Senior year, but the one thing he needs to work on his mechanical release, it's a tad but elongated. However, that can be fixed & coached up, it's not that bad, it's just not as tight & as quick as you'd like it. I don't think Miami will be taking 2 QB's in this class as they did for 2017, but this kid is definitely a take.
Here's his film:
Lorenzo Lingard - 6'1 190lbs ELITE 5-star RB, #1 rated RB in the State of Florida & #4 rated RB in the Nation! From out of Orange City, plays for a really good school (University High) against 8A comp. He's also a damn good track athlete in HS & expect him to run track at Miami as well (our track program played a huge part in his commitment).
Lingard committed to the Hurricanes on 2/8/16 & has already completely shut down his commitment, which means he won't be taking any visits & "flirting" with other schools. This is beyond amazing, but not surprising if you knew anything about this young man. He's incredibly intelligent with an extremely high character, one of the main things that appealed to Lingard in his most recent visit to Miami was the academic program of Miami. Many of you know that Miami is essentially the Stanford of Florida being one of the best academic schools in the country & by far the best in the state. Lingard much like Amari Carter, was thoroughly impressed after meeting with Deans, professors & the school President, laying out his academic future for his potential major, which will be in Business.
Lingard has been recruited by Mark Richt since he was in 8th grade when Coach Richt was at UGA, he was literally the first Coach to offer him. Lingard was also a huge fan of Todd Gurley... Fast forward to July 2016, Lingard shows up to the first annual installment of the mighty Paradise Camp & absolutely DOMINATES! No exaggeration guys, DOMINATED the camp, outran the formidable foe James Cook & was completely unstoppable in every drill, every rep he took he got even better. While at Paradise, he publicly told recruiting analyst that Miami was his favorite school & had the lead for him. On a sidenote, I can tell you that someone very close to the young man told me the same thing, but y'all know I say what I'm what allowed to. After Paradise, Lorenzo would visit Bama, Auburn, Clemson, UF, FSU & Oh St all later in the year & for him none of those schools stacked up to his Miami experience. He would also visit Miami twice more after that as well, along with Coach Brown visiting him back in November. He would come to Miami's RA Bowl practice in Orlando along with his cousin 2020 Avantae Williams (who's also a huge Canes fan & was a package deal with Lingard). Lingard would visit once more in February & that was all he needed, he was sold, he knows exactly where he wants to be & decided not to wait too long or drag it out, so he committed to the U!
He'a an ELITE RB, with world class track speed, in track he posted a personal best of a 10.80 100m, for comparisons sake Dalvin Cook's best time was 11.18, Duke Johnson's best time was 10.62, Lamar Miller's 10.53 & Travis Homer 11.50 in the 100md. He has the perfect combination of power, balance & speed, along with excellent field vision which is what makes him such a dangerous & explosive runner.
His production matches what you see on film, he finished his Junior year with 1,418yds 11.5ypc & 23TD's on just 130carries, he often wouldn't even play 2nd halfs of games. In an article posted from last year back in August I compared Lingard to Edgerrin James, I stand by that comparison in terms of his ceiling & potential. Simply put, this kid has tremendous upside & can very well be one of the many great RB's that have come through Miami, he's the next in a long line of legends at #RBU, and I can honestly say this kid has 1st round NFL draft pick talent. Yeah he's that damn good!
See for yourself:
Camron Davis - 5'10 195lbs 4-star RB from Carol City, one of the best RB's in Dade, plays against the toughest competition in the State in the legendary 6A district that features Miami Northwestern, Booker T Washington, Miami Central, Carol City & Norland.
Cam was one of the team MVP's for CC's State Championship run this season, he absolutely balled out in the FHSAA playoffs and was the main reason why CC won their State title. He was their workhorse back & stepped up as the main RB while 2019 savage Nayquan Wright missed most of the playoffs with an injury until the State title game where he was cleared to go and wound up with 2TD's vs Lake Gibson.
Cam had a good Junior year finishing with 820yds 6.7ypc & 13TD's off 123carries, also you have to keep in mind he split carries with 2019 RB Nayquan Wright for most of the season, so that's still pretty good numbers in a dual Back offense.
He was once committed to Oregon St, but decommitted from them back in October. Cam is a mostly being recruited by UGA, Mich St, South Carolina, Wisconsin & Miami just recently offered him a few weeks ago. I can tell you that he's a Cane fan, and was told he would love to play for Miami, however with Lingard committing already he could still end up in this class, but will be enticed at the idea of being the featured back at another program. The advantages we have are fairly obvious, but all I can tell you as of now, is things can & will change heading into his Senior year this fall.
Chris Curry - 5'11 205lbs 4-star RB, power style RB with 4.5 speed, great aggressive style finisher & plays against good comp at a 6A school in Lehigh Acres.
Curry has been very productive thus far, he finished his Junior season with 1,158yds 11.0ypc & 13TD'a off 105carries in just 7 games. He has 2,220yds & 23TD's for his career thus far.
He's a Canes legacy being Najeh Davenport's cousin, but he's mainly being recruited by Michigan, Oregon, UNC & UF. He could be the 2nd back that Miami takes in this class, but he's pretty high on Michigan as of now, we'll see how this unfolds.
Markese Stepp - 6'1 205lbs 4-star RB with 4.4 speed & great size, from out of Indianapolis Indiana, plays against good comp at a 6A school. He goes to Cathedral Catholic in Indiana (his schools team is called the Fighting Irish).
He's currently a Notre Dame commit & seems to be firmly committed to them (hence the reference to his HS team name lol). He didn't play much if any at all last year, due to recovering from injury, but still is a very good prospect & can see why Miami offered him recently last month. He had 888yds 8.5ypc & 12TD's as a Sophomore. He's a big speed back & while it doesn't seem likely we flip him from Notre Dame, he's a good RB & a player you keep in contact with until NSD just in case.
Another RB Miami has shown some interest in is Christian Turner, 5'10 188lbs 3-star RB from Georgia. He plays for one of the best schools in Georgia, Buford HS, really good 5A team that made it to their State title game but lost to Rome GA. His stats are inconclusive, but he visited Miami twice last year unofficially, look for him to possibly make another visit this summer at Paradise Camp. He's a prospect to look after, being that Miami is definitely looking to take 2 backs, but we might not see the final #2 RB in this class commit until late into the season.
Mark Pope - 6'0 170lbs 4-star WR from Southridge, the Canes #1 WR target for 2018 an absolutely electrifying playmaker that is a must get for this class.
Plays for the powerhouse Southridge & helped lead them to an 8A State Championship vs Dr. Phillips, he also caught a 98yd TD he took the house during a critical part in the game where their Offense had been struggling & needed a score.
(It should be noted that Southridge didn't really have a QB for most of the season, and actually had DB Antwan Collier playing QB for them, mainly as a runner, so expect Pope to ball out even more his Senior year now that Ridge finally has a full time QB this season.)
He's been recruited by Miami since last year, has unofficially visited numerous times, including for the Duke game & RA Bowl vs West Va, he's also been on campus during this Basketball season and viewed games along with other 2018 recruits, as new wrinkle in this staff's recruiting tactics by hosting multiple prospects for Basketball games. Also, with the "power move" hire of Coach Cooney former OC at Southridge, you can pretty much see the writing on the wall here (✅).
He absolutely dominated Paradise Camp last year, he really separated himself as one of the best ballers in Dade, expect to see him catapult up the rankings this season, even though he's already highly ranked & highly touted, there's no doubt he'll get his 5th Star this season & secure the #1 WR ranking in the State & possibly top 10 in the Nation. My comparison for Mark Pope in terms of his ceiling, is Marvin Harrison.. Same size, same speed, same shiftiness, yup he has the potential to be that damn good.
Here's his film:
Darquis "Dee" Wiggins - 6'3/4 185lbs 4-star WR from Southridge, obviously teammate to Mark Pope & is already committed to Miami.
Dee originally committed to Miami on October of 2015 (yeah I know), and has stuck with his commitment 100%, he is completely committed to the U & we do not have to worry about anything with this kid, he's locked in & all the way solid with us. Both he & Mark Pope have a great relationship with Coach Dugans, Richt & the rest of the staff, and as mentioned before, Coach Cooney being his former Coach at Southridge is basically icing on the cake.
Dee has through the roof potential & is a kid who will get much more attention his Senior year.
Warren Thompson - 6'4 195lbs 4-star WR out of Seffner Armwood, tall physical WR with great leaping ability & long stride run style.
Plays for a 6A school & had a solid Junior year with 35rec 487yds 5TD's & on a fairly loaded team that features two 4-star RB's.
Warren was once committed to Miami for all of 45sec as you all know lol, but is back in the fold with Miami again. Has a great relationship with Coach Dugans and will be visiting with his family for Miami's first Junior day on 2/18. Miami has the lead as of now, but FSU is the favorite here, gonna be a season long fight with FSU if we want him. It's very possible we get an early commit from Warren, but don't expect FSU & UF to just let that go, they'll stay on him til NSD.
Kevin Austin - 6'3 185lbs 4-star WR from Pompano, big tall WR with great athleticism & range, is big on the 7on7 scene & is going to absolutely blow up his Senior season.
Plays against fairly weak comp at 2A North Broward Prep, but is an incredibly versatile & productive player. His Junior year he had 41rec 1,021yds receiving with 13TD's, along with 454yds rushing & 6TD's. For his career he has 84rec 1,734yds receiving & 25TD's, to go with 572yds rushing & 7TD's total.
He's done very well on the camp circuit & has faced some great DB's in 7on7, he has a very good relationship with Coach Dugans & Coach Rumph (Rumph is the Broward area recruiter), and will be visiting Miami soon.
Other WR's to mention:
Xavier Williams - 6'1 185lbs 4-star WR from Chaminade Madonna, who just recently committed to Bama likes Miami a lot and could very well flip to us later in the season, the one big road block with him is convincing his family on Miami, otherwise expect him to stay with Bama.
Brian Hightower - 6'3 200lbs 4-star WR originally from California, but transferred to IMG is a Canes legacy, his Uncle was a former Cane, he's got a great relationship with Coach Dugans. Miami has a very good shot with him, it's basically a two team race between us & Clemson.
Anthony Schwartz - 5'11 160lbs 3-star Speedster from American Heritage, very close relationship with Coach Rumph, was just recently offered by Miami. Is a bonafide track athlete with potential Olympic aspirations, posted a personal best time of 10.26 in the 100md. As of now, UF has the lead, but Miami is trending upward.
Corey Gammage - 6'4 190lbs 3-star WR from Boynton Beach, plays against good comp at 8A school in Atlantic. Was offered by Miami back in December & is being recruited by Dugans as legit option in this class.
Jatavious Harris - 6'3 180lbs 4-star WR from out of Milldegeville Georgia, great combo of speed & athleticism, is also a track athlete.
This kid has completely blown up his Senior season no thanks to Miami. Miami was the very first team to offer him last year & since then has picked up offers from UF, South Carolina, UGA & Tenn. He absolutely loves Miami, he visited back in October & is looking to take more visits later this year. I spoke with his WR Coach at the RA Bowl (who is a huge Miami fan/supporter), he told me Miami is by far his number #1 school & would most likely commit by Summertime come Paradise camp. The only thing is, the staff seems to be pretty high on the local WR's, they want early commits from practically all of those guys, so Harris may take a backseat to local prospects. My personal take on this, I disagree with it, Harris imo is better than all but 3 local WR's, the staff is only taking 4 in this class & Harris needs to be one of them.
Brevin Jordan - 6'3 220lbs 4-star TE from West Coast Powerhouse Bishop Gorman, gifted athlete, big time playmaker & one of the highest rated TE's in the nation. Plays on the #2 ranked HS team in country & plays against the best competition in the nation.
As mentioned earlier, he's very high on Miami, both he & his QB are both being recruited together as a package duo. His top 3 schools are Miami, UCLA & Michigan, we have a huge lead as of now, but he has yet to visit. Although, Coach Hartley & Coach Jon have visited him in Nevada twice since offering back in September. From everything I've heard, the staff is expecting a commit once he finally visits, he has no issue with leaving home & once he brings his mother down when he visits, I fully expect a commit. But remember, he's a big time national recruit, so it's never over til NSD, but I believe this recruitment will go much like it did with DJ Johnson.
James Mitchell - 6'4 220lbs 4-star TE from out of Union school Virginia, dual sport athlete that plays both football & basketball & is absolute beast! This kid is my favorite TE prospect in the 2018 class, an absolute animal, relentless effort, great athlete, great hands, fast for a TE with 4.6 speed & is all of all type player. He plays WR, TE, blocks like a pro, returns punts, plays LB both ILB & OLB, plays some in-box Safety, blocks kicks & has an ultimate motor. Simply put, he's a damn good football player.
Miami just recently offered last month, Va Tech has the lead, but he's a kid I would go all out for, imo he's the quintessential Miami TE, we're taking two in this class & I hope he's one of them.
His film speaks for itself, enjoy:
The other TE's have already been posted about on Cam's article, so I won't make this any longer than it already is lol! Kyle Pitts from PA, Daniel Barker originally from Dillard transferring to Deerfield for his Senior year, big Bralen Taylor 6'7 220lbs dual sport TE from out of Texas & Mustapha Muhammad, are all really good players. (If you're on CIS, I've done individual post on all these guys).
John Campbell - 6'5 280lbs underrated (future 4-star) OT from out of Orlando, big strong physical kid, with very good anchoring ability & very good hands. Needs some work on his feet, but has a very good strong first punch, he's a great OL prospect with tremendous upside, you can not Bull rush this young man... You can't.
Plays against great comp at an 8A in Central Florida for a really good school in Dr. Phillips, this kid held his own against a very talented & stacked Defensive Line in the State title game against Southridge. Just based off that alone he deserved an offer, and sure enough he got one.
Miami offered back in December, he came to watch Miami practice during Bowl week vs West Va, likes our program a lot. Right now Miam has the lead, but Florida is his dream school & they just offered him today, I think we can get him, but it will be a difficult fight for him. IMO, the best OT in the State, which is big because Nick Petit-Frere & William Barnes are right up there as well.
Delone Scaife - 6'4 300lbs 4-star OG originally from Killian, but transferring to Southridge for his Senior Season. Big strong physical lineman that displays great athleticism & versatility, playing essential all 5 OL spots on the line, but will play OG/C at the next level.
He was one of the early 2018 commits for Coach Richt & staff, committed to Miami last year & has stayed fully committed since then, he's 100% solid, and the fact he's now going to be at Southridge helps us even more, although even if he stayed at Killian we wouldn't have anything to worry about because Killian is a very pro Miami. He's the hands down best OL in Dade for 2018.
Ed Montilus - 6'4 300lbs 4-star OG from Apoka, both he & Williams Barnes are apart of a loaded OL. (Look, I'm already well past 5,000 words lol) He's really really good & I expect him in this class (LOL, I'm sorry fellas, been writing ALOT).
Other OL's: Qadir White from NY, Casey Holman from Georgia, Devin Phillips (recent offer & current TCU commit) & one under the radar kid we could look at later down the year is my sleeper pick Cameron Wire from Louisiana (keep tabs on that name).
Nik Bonitto - 6'4 200lbs 4-star DE from STA, has 76 total tackles, 15.5TFL's & 9sacks for his career. Very good player & pass rusher, but extremely skinny for his size as a DE, needs to add like 40lbs.
Andrew Chatfield - 6'2 210lbs DE from AH. Incredibly productive for State Champion AH with 24.5 sacks, doesn't have offer yet due to questions about his size.
Gregory Rousseau - 6'6 205lbs DE/OLB from Champagnat (expect a commit, but LSU very much in it with him)
Dennis Briggs - 6'4 260lbs 3-star DE - Offer coming soon (possible commit as well, very good underrated Central Florida prospect)
Kayode Oladele - 6'4 230lbs DE from Miami Edison. Interest in Miami, only problem is Drummond is the Coach at Edison, handlers connected to that program are very very dirty, but we still have a good shot with this kid. We shall see how this unfolds.
Jordan Davis - 6'6 300lbs 3-star DT from Mallard Creek NC. Very underrated prospect with tons of upside, was offered by Miami a few weeks ago, has legit interest in Miami and may commit some time by the Summer. (UNC, NC State & SEC schools still in it even after commit)
Jamarcus Chatman - 6'3 260lbs 3-star DT from Georgia. Could commit, but don't count into class as of yet, check back in with him in December.
Michael Thompson - 6'4 290lbs 4-star DT from St. Louis Missouri. One of the most highly rated DT's in the nation from Coach Kool's old stomping grounds, Mizzou has the early lead, but expect Bama, LSU, UGA, Tenn, UF, TAMU & others to turn up the heat in his recruitment.
Nesta Silvera - 6'3 310lbs 3-star from American Heritage. Just committed to Miami, incredible interior Tackle that can play 1-3tech with A&B gap assignments, will be a huge contributor on the DL for this class, massive upside.
Rashawn Yates - 6'4 255lbs DE from Treasure Coast. Big physical kid from Port Saint Lucie, is a versatile athlete that can play both LB & DE, had a great Junior season with 66tckls 13sacks & 16TFL's. Has good speed, is a great tackler, has a quick get off on the snap & has a good motor. Had a growth spurt after his Sophomore year, because he was once listed at 6'1 230lbs, but is now 6'4 245lbs & has a great frame. Doesn't have an offer from us yet, but Diaz went by his school back in January to check up on him & some 2019 prospects as well. Definitely a sleeper to look for in the 18' Class.
Davontae McCrae - 6'5 265lbs DT, originally played at Miami Jackson but transferred to Miami Northwestern for his Senior Season. Was once committed to Louisville, but recently decommitted from them in January. I know this kid real well, I can tell you if Miami offers he'll commit.
Rosendo Louis - 6'1 240lbs 3-star LB from Deerfield Beach, Intelligent, instinctual LB with good speed, great tackler & absolutely brings the hammer, the kid packs a wallop. Played really well vs Ridge in the playoffs & had good Sophomore & Junior seasons. Plays both OLB & ILB but projects best as a Mike LB at the next level, was offered by Miami back in January & is one of Diaz's tops targets.
Eriq Gilyard - 6'0 220lbs 3-star LB from Jacksonville, plays for a great school in 3A state Champions Trinity Christian (same school as Kendrick Norton, Derrick Smith, Kevin Toliver II & his current teammate 5-star S Tyreke Johnson). Is one of the most productive LB's in the state of Florida, has 178 total tackles, 35.5TFL's, 11.5sacks, 1INT & 1TD (Fumble recovery). Is a fast, instinctive tackling machine, doesn't have an offer from us yet, but should get one some time this year.
Kenny Bastida - 6'2 230lbs 3-star LB from Deerfield Beach, obviously teammate of Louis, both LB's play Inside in Deefield's scheme. Kenny is a solid LB, imo not a take yet in this class, but someone to keep tabs on during his Senior year.
Donovan Georges - 6'1 230lbs 4-star LB from Champagnat in Hialeah, just recently committed to UGA on 1/31, but Miami will be in this until NSD with his recruitment. He visited Miami unofficially 6 times last year, has a good relationship with Diaz & I can pretty much tell you if Miami really wants him they'll flip him throughout the year.
David Reese - 6'2 210lbs 3-star LB/S from Fort Pierce, plays both Safety & LB, but is being recruited by Miami as an OLB. Right now FSU has the lead with him, but he is actually Coach Dugans nephew, so you gotta believe if Miami really wants him they shouldn't have much difficulty in getting him on board (although one has to believe his family is more than likely Nole fans given Dugans history).
Yasir Abdullah- 6'2 200lbs 3-star LB originally from Cypress Lakes for his first two years but moved to Carol City. Son of Coach & his dad is a former Gator, but they're actually pretty big Canes fans (I know weird lol). This kid is a great natural athlete, played RB, S & KR before becoming an OLB/Rush End for CC. Very fast LB, is also a track athlete with personal bests of 10.75 in the 100md & 21.97 in the 200md. He's good friends with Deandre Wilder who is recruiting him to Miami, he doesn't have his offer yet, but you can expect one some time between now & the Summer. He's one of the many CC kids that told me when I talked with them at Traz that they would absolutely love to be Canes, I would be shocked if Yasir, Cam Davis & S Randy Russell weren't all Hurricanes in this class.
Al Blades Jr - 6'1 180lbs 4-star CB from STA, son of the legendary Canes Safety Al Blades (as you all know). This kid is an ELITE talent, great prototypical size, speed, long arms & fantastic technician. Easily one of the best CB's I've seen in the nation with picture perfect form of covering skills, sometimes relies a little too much on his pure athleticism but is absolutely a terrific talent that comes from great stock. Most are unaware of how productive he is, but for his career he has 121 total tackles, 10TFL's, 43PD's (Passes Defensed), 4INT's, 4FF's, 1 blocked FG, to go with 733yds as a KR & 3TD's total. Wow!
As you all know, he's committed, he did so last year, hasn't announced publicly yet, but will in due time. He's visiting this weekend for Miami's Junior Day & will visit dozens & dozens time more this year. This is his home & he will be apart of arguably one of the best recruiting classes in Miami history.
Here's his film:
Josh Jobe - 6'1 190lbs 4-star CB/S from Colombus, is already committed to Miami and remains so for now... Was apart of the Colombus trio of CJ Henderson, Trajan Bandy & himself, oddly enough he's the oldest out of the bunch at 19 & 1/2 right now. He will be transferring to a prep school in Connecticut for his Senior year due to FHSAA rules being changed that you can't be 19 before September to maintain eligibility, last year the rule was 19 & 9months, so Jobe just missed the cut. He's a fantastic talent & is one of the best DB's in Dade, Miami has him firmly committed for now and was just recently on campus for a visit during Miami's last Basketball game vs Georgia Tech. However, Bama will challenge us every step of the way for Jobe, be shocked by nothing you hear when it comes to his recruitment, it will be a roller coaster ride. Hopefully Miamk can sustain and keep him locked in.
DJ Ivey - 6'2 180lbs 4-star CB from South Dade, underrated kid who is going to blow up his Senior season, missed all of last year with an injury, but I can tell you he may be the CB with the most upside of any of the DB's in this class & that's really saying something. Is firmly committed to Miami & has forged a very close friendship with Gilbert Frierson, simply put we have nothing to worry about with Ivey. He committed to Miami last year & has remained 100% locked in.
Gilbert Frierson - 6'2 190lbs 4-star CB/FS from Coral Gables, canes legacy, is cousin of both Frank Gore & Denzel Perryman. This kid is terrific Ballhawk, has great ball skills & natural instincts, is the perfect long armed rangy FS that Miami has been looking for. Is 100% committed to Miami, is on campus more than any other recruit & is an all around great kid. Supremely gifted natural athlete & will wow you with the way he plays the game, it's scarily reminiscent of the old school 00's Canes. Will be an All-American Safety in 2 years, book it!
Gurvan Hall - 6'1 190lbs 4-star S from West Palm Beach, plays at a good 7A school in Palm Beach lakes & is one the best Safety's in the nation. Hall was originally offered by Miami last year back in July, literally the day after Paradise Camp & he's been a top priority since. Both Coach Diaz & Coach Banda have put the full court press on for Hall & it's payed off in dividends. Hall has visited Miami a ton dating back to last season, and since his offer has picked up offers from Bama, Stanford, Notre Dame, UF, FSU, UGA & more. He's a highly rated & highly touted Safety that Nick Saban himself is going out of his way to personally recruit & so far it hasn't worked.
Here's what Miami has on its side in this recruitment, no other school has recruited Hall more than us, Gurvan is great friends with Amari Carter & looks up to him like a big brother, his father is a Canes fan as well, he has a great relationship with both Coach Diaz & Banda, Palm Beach Lakes has two former Canes on staff (HC Al Shipman & LB Coach Mike Lawson), academics is a big for Gurvan in the same it was for Amari & with Lingard as well, and we've done a great job at getting him acclimated to being with other Canes commits (Bandy, Carter, Frierson & Ivey). Basically to put it easy for you, ( ✅).
Tyson Campbell - 6'2 180lbs 4-star S/CB from American Heritage, great prospect has the potential to be an Elite CB or Safety & was a huge part of AH's undefeated State Championship run last season. Campbell has a very close relationship with Coach Rumph, Rumph has coached him since Optimist ball when he was young kid, Campbell himself has said that Rumph is almost like a 2nd father to him. With that said, Clemson has the lead, but this will be a long fight until NSD with his recruitment, expect this one to go back & forth. Clemson, Miami, FSU, Oh St & others will all jump in on this one.
Asante Samuel Jr - 5'9 170lbs 4-star CB from STA, small but an absolute beast! Imo, the best pure cover Corner in the 2018 class. Much like Blades, is a very sound technician, is great as a press man Cover & has great Ballhawk skills. He absolutely loves Miami, however the staff wasn't so sure on him due to his size, but that is changing. He's visited Miami since Junior Day of Last year & has unofficially visited throughout the season. I've heard his father (NFL all-pro former Patriots CB Asante Sr) while he may be a UCF alum, is actually a Canes fan. As of right now, FSU has the leads because they've recruited him the most, but make no mistake if Miami turns up the heat over his Senior season, with his teammate Al Blades Jr helping recruit him, I can definitely see Miami landing him down the stretch.
Randy Russell - 5'11 200lbs 3-star SS from Carol City, this kid is a f**king Wolverine! A South Florida Head Bussa, just straight up tough mean, fast, physical & aggressive. He's got great ball skills, but his best trait is sheer hitting ability, he flat out crushes people with bone breaking tackles.
He's another local Miami kid who I was calling for to get an offer since last year, and he finally got it back in January. From everything I've heard he wants to be a Hurricane, UF has been good with him as well, being that they were on him first, but with his recruitment when he can easily secure a commit if he's shown he's a priority. I want him in this class & believe he will be.
A couple of other prospects to keep an eye throughout the year are:
Traquan Butler (originally from Killian, but transferring to Southridge for his Senior year) he's like the Trajan Bandy of the 2018 class, only faster.
Keidron Smith, 6'2 180lbs long armed CB from Oxbridge Academy, he's an underrated kid but has great talent & is an absolute Ballhawk. Long arms & great range, could play FS as well if he wanted, he's been overlooked in a deep talented 2018 DB class in South Florida, but is equally as good as the others mentioned above. If we miss on other CB's he definitely needs an offer & should be pursued.
Trenell Troutman, 6'0 180lbs CB from Liberty City, played for Miami Northwestern but transferred to STA. He's currently committed to Louisville, but do not expect that commit to stick. He's one of my favorite DB's in South FLA & I wish he would've stayed at MNW. He's a kid I've known for years & would love to see him in this class, however Miami just doesn't have the numbers right now. He's highly talented & will be a baller at the next level.
Wow... There you have it U family, 7,780 words later. This is my preview for the 2018 class & what's crazy is most of this is bound to change in a couple months anyway... Lol I apologize for how long this is, been writing it for a few weeks now.