Welcome back for another installment of our Miami Hurricanes Class Breakdown.
If you’re new here, the Class Breakdown is our monthly look at the Canes’ recruiting class, with the commits currently in the class, and updates and chatter about those players and others who are on the radar for UM.
REMINDER: recruiting is a fluid construct, and this list is not exhaustive. New names will pop up, and old names will fade away, over the course of this cycle. Which happens every year. And I wanted to remind you of that fact.
And away we go.
I wrote about this already earlier in the spring and you can read the whole piece here. I’ve updated those numbers slightly (which I spoke about in this space in May), and need to update them again. Here is the update to the updated numbers for this class:
Miami Hurricanes 2019 Class Numbers (updated 11/26)
|1||1||3||2||4||3||3||3||3||2||(Any extra spots not filled)|
Quick rationale on the changes:
- Dropped RB from 2 to 1. Miami could even go so far as to take no RBs in this class.
- Raised WR from 2 to 3. Ahmmon Richards’s career-ending injury and Jeff Thomas’s departure from the program now mean Miami needs additional depth at WR that was not a need when this cycle opened and both players were on the roster.
- Everything else stays the same but some numbers may not be met (we’ll discuss that as we go along)
Now that the numbers part is out of the way, let’s look at the recruiting landscape of each position.
Recruiting Rule #1 is that you have to have a QB in every recruiting class. For Miami, that’s going to be a challenge because the Canes were all-in on one player for most of this cycle, and the available talent — including the former target — is sparse, and that’s putting things nicely.
I’ll keep this part short and sweet: it doesn’t look like Miami is getting a QB this year. Absent a transfer or......a miraculous recruiting interaction (a talented kid just falls out of the sky from Krypton and commits to Miami on NSD), I don’t see how this cycle ends with Miami having a QB commit.
The available talent at QB in this class nationally is poor. Miami hasn’t been linked to any HS QB recruit other than Sam Howell, who is likely to flip from FSU to UNC. And after a brief (week-ish) courting of Clemson grad transfer Kelly Bryant, that fizzled out and Bryant canceled his OV to Miami.
There aren’t any local options that would play at Miami (they’d be on the roster, sure, but wouldn’t see the field most likely), and as I’ve said, there aren’t any other options that are currently on the table. There’s been chatter that Miami may make a run at Brett Gabbert, the younger brother of former Mizzou star Blaine Gabbert, but that hasn’t materialized as yet.
With the prospect of being left with only 2 scholarship QBs if ANY returning QB were to transfer, not getting a QB in this class would be a problem. But, as time goes on, this is looking like the more likely result for Miami in this recruiting class, which, even accounting for the historically low level of talent at QB in 2019, can only be viewed as a failure in my opinion.
Need: 1 (updated)
This is a position where things have tangibly changed in the last month. Longtime commit Jacksonville (FL) Trinity Christian Academy 3-star Marcus Crowley took an official visit to Ohio State, and flipped the Sunday after that visit when he returned to his Jacksonville home. A talented player who is due for a MAJOR rankings bump, Crowley was the only player committed to Miami at RB. And now, he’s going to play for Urban Meyer’s team.
On top of that defection from the class, Miami legacy and prime target Ft. Lauderdale (FL) University School 4-star RB Kenny McIntosh committed to the Georgia Bulldogs after a visit to Athens. McIntosh was once (in the summer, so a while ago) thought to be a lock to follow his brother RJ’s footsteps and play for the Canes, but that obviously changed over the course of time, and is off the board entirely with his commitment to Georgia.
Miami’s top target at RB is Wellington (FL) 4-star ATH Mark-Antony Richards.The younger brother of former Canes star WR Ahmmon Richards plays both ways in HS, and but wants to play offense in college. I like the younger Richards on defense more than offense, as did Miami, who initially offered him as a Safety. But, with Richards’ stated desire to play on offense, Miami switched RB coach Thomas Brown to be the lead recruiter, and have gone forward viewing Richards as an RB. Don’t think this is a pity move; Richards is damn good.
Miami is fighting Auburn for Richards at this time. There are other schools who have offered, like Penn State for example, but this seems to be down to Miami and Auburn. I’d like it if he were to commit to Miami in short order and shut things down, but Richards is taking all the time available to come to his decision. Whether or not that’s a good thing for Miami remains to be seen.
New on the board at RB is Sebring (FL) 3-star DJ Williams. A Miami legacy whose uncle, Edgerrin James, once starred for the Canes, Williams has burst onto the national recruiting scene after an outstanding senior season. An Appalachian State commit, Williams averaged 11.5 yards per carry in 2018. Read that again; 11.5 yards. per. carry.
Williams’s offer list has exploded in recent weeks, with Miami joining Texas, Tennessee, Auburn, and Ole Miss in extending new offers. Williams is scheduled to take an official visit to Georgia on December 13th, but with McIntosh’s recent commitment to the Bulldogs, that trip might not happen.
While most once thought Georgia was the odds-on favorite to flip Williams, Miami and (you guessed it) Auburn are now thought to be the teams most likely to flip Williams from AppSt. And, if you combine this recruitment with Richards’s, there is a bit of a thought in the recruiting community that Auburn and Miami are likely to split those 2 backs. Which will go where is yet to be determined.
A late addition to both the offer list and this piece is Katy (TX) 4-star Deondrick Glass. Miami offered Glass on Monday evening, so he’s very, very new on the offer board. At 5’11” 200lbs, Glass has good size, and great production to go along with it. Glass has rushed for more than 4,800 yards and 79 (!!!!) TDs in his HS career. So yeah, he’s good.
Looking at Glass’s recruitment, he has previously taken Official Visits to Oklahoma State, Ohio State, and Alabama, and has 25+ offers to his name. Katy has routinely produced high level CFB prospects, and Glass is just the next one up. Since he was offered a scholarship about 14 hours from the time I’m typing this, it’s a bit early to know if Miami can or will get involved seriously in this recruitment. But, stranger things have happened, so we’ll keep watching and see what happens.
Of note, Glass named Alabama as his leader recently, but does not plan to sign early next month, so there’s time to make a move, if there’s a move to be made.
With Crowley’s defection from this class, Miami now looks to take 1 or 0 RBs in this class, and then follow that up with 2 studs in 2020. There’s plenty of talent available in the 2020 RB group — elite talent, at that — and Miami is in a good place with Travis Homer, DeeJay Dallas, Lorenzo Lingard, and Cam’Ron Davis all likely to return to Coral Gables next season. So, if ever there was a year to take low numbers at RB for Miami, this is it.
Need: 3 (updated)
I was convinced the number at WR was 2 for this year for a while. That belief was strengthened when star WR Ahmmon Richards was forced to retire from football due to a neck injury.
Then, star WR Jeff Thomas — Miami’s leading receiver and most explosive player after Richards’s retirement — was dismissed from/elected to leave the Canes program. That was unexpected (though rumors of this were heavy in the days leading up to this action) at the beginning/through this cycle. So, that’s changed things as well. So, instead of 2 WRs, I believe the number to be 3 for Miami this year.
Miami holds a commitment from Neptune Beach (FL) Duncan U. Fletcher 4-star Jeremiah Payton. At 6’1” 190lbs, Payton has good size and elite playmaking ability on the outside. He’s a top 100 player in this class, and was the top target to commit this spring. Area recruiter Todd Hartley got another good one from Jacksonville for Miami. Payton is on track to enroll early in January at Miami.
Miami is now fully engaged in recruiting Ellenwood (GA) Cedar Grove 5-star Jadon Haselwood. The top WR in this class, Haselwood was on campus for an unofficial visit in May, and again for an extended visit for Paradise Camp in July, and yet again for an official visit to Miami for the Florida State game on October 6th.
On top of the 3 recruiting trips to Coral Gables in the past year, Haselwood and his family were on South Beach for a weekend in late October to celebrate his mother’s birthday. While not directly related to this recruitment, another trip to the 305 could speak to Haselwood’s reported desire to play his college football near a major city, which he could certainly do if he chose Miami.
An adidas All-American, Haselwood has stated in interviews that Auburn, Tennessee, Miami, Georgia, and Oklahoma are the teams recruiting him hardest at this point. And, though there has been talk of momentum for Miami after his decommitment from Georgia and subsequent OV to the Gables, Haselwood is still in the midst of the recruiting process, and will take his time before making a decision.
Haselwood will announce his decision at the adidas All-American game, but may sign during the early period and reveal his choice to the world on January 5th, 2019. Miami is in a good spot here, but when you’re talking about a top 3 player in this recruiting class such as Haselwood, there can be no relaxing. This is a recruitment that we’ll be watching all the way to the end, regardless of what the chatter may suggest prior to Haselwood’s announcement date.
With Miami’s need for WRs now increased in the 2019 class, Lake City (FL) Columbia 4-star T.J. Jones has risen up the board. The 6’1” 185lb speedster has talent and is a gamebreaking player for his team, and while still squarely behind Haselwood on Miami’s board at current, Jones is the odds on favorite to be WR3 (hopefully, if Haselwood commits) in this class.
Jones has been to Hard Rock Stadium for multiple games this year, so there’s interest on some level, and documented game visits. WR coach Ron Dugans went to Lake City for an in-home meeting with Jones and his family, and the talented player could soon schedule an Official Visit to Miami. You may have glossed over his name previously, but T.J. Jones is a player to know, and now a prime target for Miami at WR in 2019.
Just want to drop a quick note that Hollywood (FL) Chaminade-Madonna 4-star John Dunmore has been on campus and at Hard Rock Stadium recently. The Penn State commit is teammates with no less than 5 players currently committed to Miami (over the 2019-2021 classes) and could be a target for a flip. I’m not saying this is probable, just noting that it is possible, if everything shakes the right way.
It wouldn’t surprise me if WR coach Ron Dugans tried to make a run at Dunmore; he’s damn good, and Miami could use a player like him, and nearly all the elite kids at his HS are committed to Miami already so there could be peer-level recruiting going on in Miami’s favor. But, for now, just remember the name, and we’ll see what, if anything, happens here.
There is no other player with whom Miami has a strong relationship to note at this time, but depending on how things shake with Haselwood and Jones, new names could pop up between now and Signing Day.
After signing the best TE class in America in 2018, the Canes are off to another fast start in 2019. Already committed is Tampa (FL) Jesuit 3-star Larry Hodges. Hodges is an H-Back type who lacks elite height — he’s only 6’1” — but is fast and athletic and explosive and can impact games in a number of ways.
Even with Hodges committed, however, Miami is not done recruiting at Tight End. Looking to add another player to this group, the Canes have several offers out, and are evaluating players at this position.
The first name to know on the offer/target list is Lakeland (FL) 4-star Keon Zipperer. Once considered a lock to go to Florida, Zipperer has visited Miami a couple of times, and the Canes are trying to make a move to get the 6’2” 240lb playmaker in their class. There is still lots of time left, and visits to make, but something has to shake with Zipperer. Soon. That time could be December 13th weekend, when Zipperer will be in Coral Gables with a HUGE group of official visitors for the final visit weekend before the Early Signing Period.
Another player Miami has offered at TE is Dickinson (TX) 3-star Jalen Wydermyer. This is more your prototypical TE prospect, standing 6’5” 235lbs. Wydermyer has offers from all over the Southeast, with notable teams such as Alabama, Georgia, LSU, and Texas A&M being on his list.
Wydermyer took official visit to Miami on November 3rd. TE coach Todd Hartley has been recruiting Wydermyer for more than a year, and I’ve written about him in every installment of this piece, so this isn’t just a late addition to the board. This is a player Miami wants and would fully take in this class. I think the OV to Coral Gables openen Wydermyer’s eyes some, but I’d still consider him to be a bit of a longshot to sign with Miami at this time.
Many recruiting analysts believe that Miami will undoubtedly land either Zipperer or Wydermyer as the 2nd TE in this class. That would be the dream scenario, for sure, so reports to that end are music to my ears. It’s now up to Miami to turn those reports into reality.
Let’s start with the commits: Citra (FL) North Marion 4-star OT Michael Tarquin and Jacksonville (FL) Sandalwood 3-star OG Kingsley Eguakun recently transferred from Belleview (FL) and Jacksonville (FL) Atlantic Coast, respectively. Eguakun has been committed for several months and after a bit of flirtation with Auburn (including and OV to Auburn), he recently told 247sports that he will be signing with Miami.
Tarquin committed later in the spring, but won’t play this HSFB season. He is having surgery to repair a torn labrum in his shoulder, with the goal being ready to participate in spring practice at Miami as Tarquin is going to be an early enrollee. This recruitment is not over, however. Tarquin will take an Official Visit to Florida this weekend before making a final final decision between the Canes and Gators. So, stay tuned.
A final decision is coming soon for Michael Tarquin, who officially visited Miami this weekend and will take a final visit with Florida this coming weekend. It won't be an easy decision. https://t.co/mNZyebKhu3 pic.twitter.com/DqXvlI55HH— David Wilson (@DBWilson2) November 26, 2018
Leading the offer list is Bradenton (FL) IMG Academy 5-star OT Evan Neal. A towering hulk of a man, Neal stands 6’8” 360lbs, down about 30lbs from his previously-listed (and 100% accurate) 391lbs. Neal can play guard or tackle, and has excelled at both in his time at IMG. A Central Florida native, Neal has visited Miami multiple times over the last year and a half. He’s far and away the #1 target at OT, and the Canes are battling Alabama and Florida State, for his services. While it once seemed that Miami held a lead for Neal, the overwhelming thought in the recruiting industry at this time is that Neal will pick Alabama. So, there’s that.
Another OL Target is Tampa (FL) Plant 4-star Will Putnam. A player who can play either Guard or Tackle, the 6’4” 280lb Putnam has good size and pedigree, and plays for one of the best HSFB programs in the State of Florida, one that has routinely produced top level P5 talent. Putnam hasn’t had his name linked to Miami in forever, so this will likely be the last time I mention him here.
5-star OT Darnell Wright listed Miami in his top 10. The West Virginia native has stated an interest in Miami, and there’s been talk that he might take an official visit to Coral Gables this fall, but unless/until he does this is a nice note and nothing more. And with time to take an OV running out...(you can fill in the rest)
Pensacola (FL) West Florida Tech 3-star Darius Washington is a player Miami is actively trying to flip from his current commitment. Washington, a pure tackle prospect, is committed to Mississippi State, but took an official visit on October 6th for the Florida State game. Despite Miami’s efforts to connect, Washington remains committed to Mississippi State. But, again, with a visit already done, Washington is a player Miami is pursuing hard at this time, and we’ll see if those efforts generate any movement in the future.
Other players along the OL have offers, but either a visit or new reports of increased interest are needed before they are real options for a spot in this class. And, with Miami’s glaring need for OL on the roster, this could very well happen.
Miami needs a bigger DL class this year due to a bunch of losses from the roster, and only replacing them with 3 DL in the 2018 recruiting class. But, there needs to be quality with those numbers, and there’s talent available to fill this need.
Already committed to Miami in the 2019 class are Hollywood (FL) Chaminade-Madonna 3-star DE Cameron Williams, Ft. Lauderdale (FL) St. Thomas Aquinas 3-star DT Jason Muñoz, Vero Beach (FL) 4-star DE Jahfari Harvey, Buford (GA) 3-star DT Jalar Holley, and Brooklyn (NY) Poly Prep 4-star DT Jason Blissett.
Williams is a 6’5” 215lb edge rusher with burst and skill. Williams has tweeted out that he’s “1000% committed” to Miami, so he’s apparently locked in. Muñoz is an under-the-radar player with good size at 6’3” 276lbs. He missed the 2017 season with a broken leg, but performed well for Aquinas in the spring, earned an offer at a Mark Richt Football Camp, and committed pretty much on the spot. Harvey is a 6’3” 225lb edge rusher who used a strong spring at his new school — Vero Beach — to become the #1 prospect in Florida’s Treasure Coast area. Harvey backed that ranking up this fall, dominating game after game, and earning a bump up to a 4-star prospect. He’s so good. Man. You’re gonna love him.
Holley is from the same school where DL coach Jess Simpson spent much of his legendary HSFB coaching career, and has the build and skill to be a solid interior lineman for Miami.
Blissett, the most recent commit at this position group and this class overall, came to Paradise Camp, earned an offer, and fell in love with Miami. The #2 ranked player in the State of New York, Blissett is a big and athletic DT in the RJ McIntosh mold. Like Harvey, Blissett has gotten a rankings bump up to a 4-star after a stellar 2018 season. Told you he was good.
That’s a good group of 5 players, but Miami still wants/needs to add more talent up front. In addition to the 1 open DL slot (based on the numbers I listed at the top of this piece), those Best Available slots on the class list up above? Those are likely to go to DL, OL, or DBs, depending on how things shake.
With more talent needed, let’s look at the targets.
With 3 players committed here, Miami may look to stand pat at DT. But, not until they exhaust all available options.
Miami coaches have visited FSU commits Lehigh Acres (FL) Senior 4-star DE Quayshon Fuller, and Ft. Myers (FL) Dunbar 4-star DE Derrick Hunter as the contact period has opened. While both were once thought to be prime flip candidates, each has reaffirmed their commitment to FSU over the course of the season. But, with the Noles going 5-7 and missing a bowl game for the first time in 36 years — quick aside: AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA SUCKERS — maybe there’s a chance to make a move. So, Miami seems to have at least asked, if nothing more.
I’ve mentioned other guys previously, like local DTs Miami (FL) Northwestern 3-star DT Calijah Kancey and Miami (FL) Carol City 3-star DT Malcolm Ray, but Miami isn’t really communicating with them.
Many (LA) 3-star DT Myron Warren and Salt Lake City (UT) East 4-star DT Siaki Ika are out of state names that I’ve mentioned before, but neither seems to be at the top of Miami’s board, if on the board at all. Ellenwoord (GA) Cedar Grove 4-star Rashad Cheney has a Miami offer, was once committed to Alabama, and is HS teammates with 5-star WR Jadon Haselwood, who Miami is heavily recruiting. So, could they try to get the homeboy hookup with Cheney AND Haselwood coming to Miami? Maybe — but I admit that’s pure speculation at this time.
So, unless/until Miami pushes for one of the listed players, or an off-the-radar guy, it seems to me that the Canes are going to be content to take Blissett, Holley, and Muñoz as their 3 DTs in this class.
At the top of the target list at DE is Ft. Lauderdale (FL) Cardinal Gibbons 4-star Khris Bogle. An athletic 6’4” 207lbs, Bogle is one of the premium pass rushers in the 2019 recruiting class. Bogle, who has visited Miami multiple times, is considering a couple schools, with Miami and now Alabama as the top contenders. Florida State and Tennessee are around, too, but the Canes and Tide seem to be going head to head for yet another SoFLA standout. Finally recovered from an early-season injury, Bogle has returned to his previous dominating form, leading Cardinal Gibbons deep into the HSFB playoffs. I’d like it if he chose Miami, but there is a long way to go in this recruitment, I think.
Another target at DE is 4-star Lloyd Summerall, who transferred from Auburndale (FL) to Lakeland (FL) in the summer. A long and lean edge rusher at 6’6” 215lbs, Summerall is exactly what Miami wants at DE. The problem with him being a prototypical DE is that teams all over America want him on their roster, as well.
Summerall visited Miami for Paradise Camp, and that visit went well. Summerall’s interest has been piqued by the development of freshman DE Gregory Rousseau, who has a similar build and game to Summerall, but was less developed at this same stage of recruitment since Rousseau played mainly Safety, not DE, in high school. Miami is making moves, but Florida State, Alabama, Florida, and others are also still chasing the talented defender. Summerall will be one of the multitude of Official Visitors on the December 13th weekend.
The new name to know is Brooklyn (NY) Canarsie 4-star Adisa Isaac. The #1 player in NY is good friends with the #2 player in NY: Miami DT commit Jason Blissett. Isaac has good size for an edge rusher at 6’5” 220lbs, and could step into Joe Jackson’s spot (eventually) on Miami’s DL. Isaac took an official visit to Miami last weekend for the Pitt game, and Miami reportedly “opened his eyes” during the visit.
BUT, before you start printing up Isaac Canes jerseys, local power Penn State was and is still viewed as the leading team for the standout rusher. Miami will keep pushing for Isaac, and hopefully have Blissett doing the same, but the Canes are in a clear trail position to Penn State at this time.
Yet another target is Louisville (KY) Moore Traditional School 4-star J.J. Weaver. A South Florida native who moved away when he was in elementary school, Weaver has great size and length at 6’6” 230lbs. Not only that, but Weaver is reportedly one of DL Coach Jess Simpson’s favorite prospects at DE.
Miami got Weaver on campus for an official visit for the Florida State game in October, and the Canes continue to push hard for the talented defender. But, with a commitment coming in just a few days, it appears that Weaver will be heading to Kentucky unless something changes at the last minute.
Forest Park (GA) 4-star Jusin Eboigbe is another player Miami is actively recruiting on the DL. The Alabama commit is scheduled to take an Official Visit to Coral Gables on December 7th.
At 6’5” 260, Eboigbe has prototypical size for a strong side DE. He would slot into the Canes DL in the Chad Thomas/Joe Jackson role, and likely be great at it. He’s an All-American, and he’s committed to Alabama’s DL. That kind of speaks for itself. But....he’s committed to Alabama. So, a flip is probably a pipe dream at best. And that’s only IF he takes his scheduled visit to Miami, as Alabama is notorious for not allowing committed players to visit elsewhere under threat of pulling their scholarships. And, Miami has been burned by this Alabama rule before with several top players not taking visits to the Canes under express direction from Nick Saban and staff in previous years. So, the win would be even getting Eboigbe on campus. From there, shoot your shot and see what happens.
With Williams and Harvey committed, Miami is in a good place to add one or more of the above-listed targets to the DE group in this class. And, in a perfect world, Miami would keep Williams and Harvey, add 2 of the listed players — I’d prefer Bogle and (insert 2nd player here) — and call it a day at DE.
After only taking 1 LB in 2018, and a less-than-inspiring group in 2017, the Canes need big numbers and talent in this class at LB. The good news is that Miami has 3 LBs already committed: Miami (FL) Northwestern 3-star Sam Brooks, and Ft. Lauderdale (FL) St. Thomas Aquinas 4-star Anthony Solomon and Solomon’s teammate 4-star Avery Huff. Those players are a diverse group, and the LB class Miami needs this cycle.
Of recent note, 247Sports National Recruiting analyst Steve Wiltfong put in a flip prediction for Anthony Solomon to Michigan. While that is only 1 prediction, that should get everyone’s attention. Miami beat Michigan for Solomon’s commitment back in the spring, so this is a team with which he has been connected. I’m not saying that Solomon is a goner or anything, but it would behoove Miami to take this seriously and do everything possible to lock Solomon down for this class.
Brooks is solidly committed and Miami is trying to get him to enroll early in January. Huff is also solidly committed, but unable to enroll early because of St. Thomas Aquinas’s academic requirements (a religion class you cannot take early or online).
Miami would love to be done at LB, but the Solomon situation, if there is one, needs addressing.
Once the largest group in this recruiting class, the DB group in 2019 has seen attrition, and needs more depth and talent to be added to both cover for the players lost, and in general to add to the roster moving forward.
Committed in this class are Hollywood (FL) Chaminade-Madonna 4-star S Keontra Smith, his teammate 4-star CB Te’Cory Couch, and Miami Gardens (FL) Carol City 3-star CB Jarvis Brownlee. Brownlee and Couch are tough and talented cover corners who are a bit undersized. Smith is a tough and physical safety who figures to see plenty of early playing time at Miami.
Former commits Altamonte Springs (FL) Lake Brantley 3-star ATH Damarius Good and Miami (FL) Palmetto 3-star S Cornelius Nunn decommitted in the last month, with Nunn flipping back to Syracuse, the team from which he flipped to commit to Miami in the first place. And Good played offense exclusively in HS, and looks to do that at the college level as well, which he’ll have to do elsewhere as that was not an option at Miami. He’s VERY FAST though, so a team like UCF could be a good fit for Good.
With all of that being said, let’s now look at the targets at both CB and S that Miami is after to join this recruiting class.
Miami (FL) Southridge 4-star Tyrique Stevenson is a potential 5-star player in this class and an elite athlete. A summer transfer from Homestead (FL) South Dade, Stevenson would be at the top of Miami’s board no matter the school he attended. At 6’0” 190lbs, Stevenson has the height, build, and athleticism to be an impact player in the secondary from day 1. Obviously, a player of Stevenson’s caliber has his fair share of suitors — he claims 28 scholarship offers, including Alabama, Clemson, Florida and Florida State.
Miami now finds itself in a dogfight with Georgia for Stevenson. After having visited both campus multiple times over the past year, Stevenson recently said in an interview that Miami and Georgia are tied atop his recruitment. So, now, the real work begins: pushing to the finish and beating out one of the hottest recruiting teams in the country for an elite local player, the likes of which have seldom come to Miami in recent years.
West Palm Beach (FL) Palm Beach Central 5-star Akeem Dent is a top CB in the 2019 recruiting class. Once committed to Miami, Dent flipped to Florida State last July. Obviously, the #1 CB in America is a player that Miami — and many schools — want, and they’re trying to get him to flip from FSU. Dent and his mother visited Coral Gables for a summer Junior Day event, so there’s been connection to campus. Dent has also visited Hard Rock Stadium for a game in recent weeks. Even still, the Canes are fighting an uphill battle in this recruitment, with Florida State and Alabama leading the way. But, there could be a chance: Dent has said that he’ll take an Official Visit to Miami. And we all know visits matter, so keep an eye out for that one.
Pensacola (FL) Pine Forest 3-star Martin Emerson Jr. is a player that Miami is recruiting still. A Mississippi State commit, Emerson Jr. is a big corner at 6’2” 185lbs. With smaller players committed at this position currently, Emerson Jr. could be a nice addition and bring needed height and length to the CB group in this class. With 2 defections from the class, there’s a clear spot for Emerson in Coral Gables at this time. Whether he wants it or not remains to be seen.
After hanging around the periphery for most of this cycle, North Palm Beach (FL) The Benjamin School 4-star Kaiir Elam has taken an unofficial visit for a game at Hard Rock Stadium, and could possibly come down for an OV as the Early Signing Period approaches. He’s a Florida legacy, however, so don’t get ahead of yourselves. I still expect him to end up at UF, but if more communication and visits happen, who knows.
Just reminding you that Miami (FL) Southridge 4-star Tyrique Stevenson could be in this class at Safety instead of Cornerback. If you’re viewing him as an S, he’s Miami’s top target at the position.
Also, Pensacola (FL) Pine Forest 3-star Martin Emerson Jr. could fit at Safety due to his size.
A player Miami is circling back on is Ft. Lauderdale (FL) St. Thomas Aquinas 4-star Jordan Battle. Battle is committed to Ohio State, but in the wake of the issues at that school, Miami (and many others) are checking in on the 4-star talent. Battle recently said that he plans on taking visits to schools — including Miami — this year, but he’s “still committed” to OSU. Also of note: any visit Battle would take to Miami would need to be an unofficial visit, as he took his official visit to Miami this Spring prior to his commitment to Ohio State. That isn’t a problem for the local player, however, as he’s been in attendance at Hard Rock Stadium for at least 3 games already this year.
That’s it for Safety. Unless new names pop up, the board is pretty thin. Miami needs another body at S to join Smith in this class, but with Amari Carter and Gurvan Hall on the roster, the starting spots should be fine in 2019. But, recruiting is about being prepared for the future, so an additional player at S in this class is preferable.
After taking a punter (Zach Feagles) and a kicker (Bubba Baxa) in the last 2 years, Miami was not in the market for a scholarship specialist in this class. But, due to Feagles’ struggling performance, things changed.
Miami went to the West Coast to get a commitment from City College of San Francisco (CA) P Louis Hedley. An Australian native, Hedley will be a scholarship player at Miami and have 3 years of eligibility once he arrives in Coral Gables.
#WelcomeToTheU, Louis Hedley. Miami turns to Austalian native, JUCO P @louishedley1 for potential upgrade on special teams. #Canes #TheU https://t.co/k0rs3hydZU pic.twitter.com/YHXuxxe4br— StateOfTheU.com (@TheStateOfTheU) November 5, 2018
So, for everyone asking that Miami go get a new punter, they did. Hedley is huge at 6’4” 245lbs and covered in tattoos, as you can see in the link for the Welcome to the U piece, and see in more detail inside that piece. So, he has an edge to him, at least appearance wise. Let’s hope his punting is equally noteworthy when he arrives.
Alright. That’s that. Another Class Breakdown is in the books, and you’re pretty well caught up on the current (and ever changing) landscape of Miami Hurricanes recruiting.
There’s always things to discuss with recruiting, so hop in the comments and let’s chat.