Despite a very lackluster end to the 2018 recruiting cycle, this class is seen as one of the elite classes in the nation. The Hurricanes are bringing in blue chip talent at positions of need, and we may see some of these freshman make an immediate impact on the team. Here are some 2018 recruits who can make an immediate impact for the Hurricanes and freshman.
Lorenzo Lingard – RB
What seemed like a weakness at first after the injury to Mark Walton, has become a strength with the emergence of Travis Homer and Deejay Dallas. The Hurricanes brought in an elite group of backs and the headliner is Lorenzo Lingard, who is arguably the most talented running back in the 2018 class. He has received comparisons to Todd Gurley due to his rare combo of size and speed. While he may have some time before he reaches Gurley status, the talent he possesses is undeniable. Despite the fact that the Hurricanes are returning a starter and an electric playmaker at the position, I think Lingard is better than Homer from day 1, and Deejay can be moved around to different positions and play a complimentary role in the backfield. Lingard may not be a workhorse from day 1, but it will be hard to keep his talent off the field.
Brevin Jordan – TE
With the departure of Chris Herndon to the NFL, and the lack of experience from the returning players, tight end was a huge position of need for the Hurricanes. Thanks to the work done by Coach Hartley, the Hurricanes landed the number 1 tight end coming out of high school. Brevin Jordan is a true blue chip talent and has the chance to be a starter the moment he steps onto campus. While there will be growing pains at the position, Miami has always featured the tight end, and it will be no different this year with Jordan. This is my pick for a potential Freshman All-American and I fully expect Jordan to have a big impact on the offense in year one.
Bubba Baxa - K
Replacing one of the most successful kickers in Miami Hurricanes history will not be easy, but Baxa will be stepping in as our starting kicker from day 1. Baxa was arguably the top kicking recruit in the nation and he comes in with a big leg. Word on the streets is that Baxa was consistently hitting from 60 yards in practices and in multiple kicking camps. There were a handful of games that came down to the kicker last season, so Baxa will have an immediate impact on the Hurricanes and could add a new dynamic to the team with the ability to hit long field goals. There will be no breaking in period for Baxa and if the less than stellar QB play continues for the Hurricanes, Baxa will be in for a busy year.
Jarren Williams – QB
A late riser in the ranks, Miami was fortunate to land such a talented QB so late in the game. Williams comes into Miami as an Early Enrollee, so his impact will be felt more than N’Kosi Perry’s last year. While Williams may not be the favorite to win the job this year, he will put the pressure on Malik Rosier and Perry to fend him off for the starting gig. With an entire spring to learn the playbook and show off his skills in front of the coaches, Williams will have a legit shot of wining the job when it’s all said and done. Even if Williams does not win the job, he will force Perry and Rosier to up their game and could help one of the QBs separate themselves from the pack. Whether he sees the field or not, QB is the most impactful position on any team, and Williams will make his felt.
Nesta Silvera – DT
With the early departures of RJ McIntosh and Kendrick Norton, and Anthony Moten graduating, Silvera will have an early opportunity to make an impact on the D-Line. Silvera is a big, nasty DT that really took off his senior year. He was not getting a lot of love from recruiting sites, which is common for the big uglies, but he made them all reconsidered when he dominated some of the top offensive line talent at the U.S. Army All-American game. With no proven commodities in front of him, Silvera will get into games early and often, and he could possibly earn the starting gig at the end of the summer. Miami uses a handful of D-Lineman during games, and Silvera will have his opportunity early in his career to make an impact on the defense.
Honorable Mentions: DJ Ivey, Gurvan Hall JR., Mark Pope, Nigel Bethel (Returner)
Anyone else you think will have an early impact? Let us know in the comments below.