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Miami Hurricanes Recruiting Radar: non-QB Offensive Targets in 2020

An early look at the landscape for Miami’s offensive recruiting in 2020.

State of the U Illustration by Mike Meredith

Welcome back again, recruitniks! We’re well into our coverage to start the 2020 recruiting cycle, and that will continue today with a look at the non-QB offensive targets on the radar.

But, before we get there, I want to remind you that we’ve looked at the numbers and needs for Miami this cycle,

Re-introduced the current 2020 Canes commits,

And took a look at QB recruiting for 2020.

Now that you’re all caught up on what we’ve already done, now it’s time to look forward at the other targets and options at the non-QB offensive positions in 2020. I won’t be profiling the current commits in this piece, since I already did it. So, if you want to know more about them and how they fit at their position, click that link up above and learn something.

Here we go...

Running Back

Need: 2 | Committed: 1 — 4-star Don Chaney Jr.

4-star Jaylan Knighton. This speedy Deerfield Beach (FL) standout was previously committed to Oklahoma. However, Knighton recently opened up his recruitment. While Knighton recently visited Coral Gables, all intel suggest that Clemson will end up being the pick for the 5’9” 185lb speedster.

4-star ATH Caziah Holmes. A long and lean athlete who could find a home at multiple positions, the 6’1” 180lb Cocoa (FL) standout Holmes prefers to play running back. And at RB, he has showcased good skills to go along with ELITE speed — he won the Fastest Man competition at The Opening Orlando Regional and routinely posts times in the 4.4 range. FSU, OSU, and WVU are all also pursuing Holmes, but Miami is in a good spot and could push to get him in this class.

4-star Lamy Constant. Miami continues to work the burgeoning NYC connection with this offer to Constant, a Brooklyn (NY) Canarsie standout. The 5’11” 200lb Constant is a top 200 player in this class, so he’s got talent. His recruitment is picking up with several P5 teams offering recently. We’ll see how high on Miami’s list he is with how things go with others.

4-star Tirek Murphy. The biggest back on this list, the 6’0” 220lb Murphy is yet another NYC standout. He was teammates with 2019 Miami signees OT Adam ElGammal and DT Jared Harrison-Hunte at Middle Village (NY) Christ The King Regional, so there’s a recent history of Miami pulling players from his HS program. Most believe Michigan and Penn State to be leading the battle for his services at present.

3-star Henry Parrish. A 5’10” 173lb back from Miami (FL) Columbus, Parrish is highly productive on the field. He helped Columbus to an 8A State Championship Game appearance, and he was 1st team All-Dade in 2018. Parrish is starting to get P5 offers, as teams such as FSU, Michigan, Penn State, Tennessee, and Oregon haveall offered him recently. If Miami wanted to go hyper-local (have 2 commits from Dade County) at RB, Parrish would be the player to get.

5-star Demarkcus Bowman. A dynamic 5’9” 186lb back is one of the best in America. There’s a big issue, however: he goes to Lakeland (FL) High School. Miami doesn’t get players from Lakeland pretty much ever. That won’t change now. Bowman is going to Florida (but I knew y’all would be all up in the comments wondering why I left him off the list if I did, so I put him here just to tell you he’s not coming here).

Miami has extended early offers to other top-rated backs. Players like 5-star Zach Evans (Houston, TX), 5-star Kendall Milton (Clovis, CA), 4-star Lawrence Toafili (Largo, FL), 4-star Tank Bigsby (Hogansville, GA), and 4-star Jo’Quavious Marks (Atlanta, GA) hold offers, but none appear to be seriously considering Miami at this time.

Wide Receiver

Need: 3 | Committed 2 — 4-star Bryan Robinson, 4-star Marcus Fleming

5-star Julian Flemming. The Nation’s #1 WR and a top 5 player overall (same as Jadon Haselwood was in 2019 for a comparison of ranking), the 6’3” 210lb Flemming is elite as elite can get. The Catawissa (PA) native has 31 offers from all over the country. He’ll be able to pick his school. Penn State and Ohio State are thought to be leaders here, but never count out Alabama (because they don’t care about location when recruiting and they get who they want, more often than not).

5-star Rakim Jarrett. The Nation’s #2 WR and a top 20 overall player, Jarrett is another elite receiver prospect. The Washington, D.C. native has been favorably compared to Stefon Diggs, and holds 30+ offers at present. Like Flemming, teams in his local area — Ohio State and Maryland — are thought to be his leaders. And, again, the recruiting machine known as Alabama can’t ever be overlooked for any 5-star player.

4-star Marcus Rosemy. The first Floridian on this list, Rosemy attends Ft. Lauderdale (FL) St. Thomas Aquinas. At 6’2” 187lbs, Rosemy has great size and incredible skill to go along with it. This one is tricky however; Rosemy previously stated on social media that “The U is dead” last season. Now, with decreased communication, likely based in part on that statement, Rosemy is crying foul, stating that he wished he heard more from Miami. Whether this staff views his prior statement as the wild musings of a teenager and moves forward OR if they view that as a dealbreaker and wish him well as he looks to go elsewhere — Ohio State is the overwhelming favorite for Rosemy at present — remains to be seen. Could go either way, honestly.

4-star Jermaine Burton. If this name seems familiar, it should; Burton, who left Bradenton (FL) IMG Academy to return to his SoCal roots at Calabasas (CA), was once committed to Miami. Yes, it was an early commitment, which he backed off of, but he’s a player with speed and talent. At 6’1” 193lbs he has good size, and he’s a polished and dynamic receiver. Could he choose to come back home again to The U? Maybe.

4-star Thiau Jones-Bell. This Miami (FL) Carol City standout just got a big ratings bump, and it was deserved. The 5’11” 187lb Jones-Bell is yet another dynamic WR from SoFLA, where players like that seemingly grow on trees. While Miami and others have recently offered, Jones-Bell has been openly vocal that his dream school is Alabama. I fully expect him to commit to the Crimson Tide this spring.

4-star Xzavier Henderson. A 6’2.5” 180lb standout from Miami (FL) Columbus, Henderson is known for his blazing speed and playmaking ability. If the surname and HS seem familiar, they should; Henderson’s older brother is UF Cornerback CJ Henderson — who was once committed to Miami then flipped to UF on signing day. The younger Henderson seems to be more open with his recruitment, as Clemson, Miami, and Florida are all up top battling for his services.

4-star Marc Britt. Another well-traveled (i.e. he’s transferred a few times in HS) SoFLA standout, the 6’2” 180lb Britt, who is now at Miami (FL) Christian School, was once committed to Miami. He holds plenty of high level offers, including Alabama, Florida, and Penn State, and the days of him being connected with and committed to Miami may very well be a thing of the past.

3-star Elijah Canion. A tall receiver at 6’3” 190lbs, Canion was a key figure in Hollywood (FL) Chaminade-Madonna’s back-to-back 3A State Championships. He played and plays with several players committed or signed to Miami, so there’s a connection to his HS program, to be sure. Canion has 23 offers at present, but with no favorite, his recruitment likely has a ways to go.

3-star Maliq Carr. A basketball/football dual-sport athlete from Oak Park (MI), Carr is a massive WR at 6’6” 215lbs. With Dan Enos and Butch Barry having worked in my homestate at Central Michigan previously, some connections are there and offers to select players have been made. It remains to be seen how connected Miami will be with Carr, but he’s on the list because it seems he fits the archetype of a big bodied WR Miami seems to be looking for (with at least 1 player) in this class.

3-star Kentron Poitier. A local player at Miami (FL) Palmetto, Poitier is another WR option for Miami. At 6’2” 190lbs — I thought he was taller than that from his highlights — Poitier has good size and increasing skill. Some think he could just be scratching the surface of his potential, and could end up being a steal for Miami, or another school.

Tight End

Need: 2 | Committed: 1 — 4-star Dominic Mammarelli

5-star ATH Darnell Washington. A massive player at 6’7.5” 238lbs, the Las Vegas (NV) Desert Pines star is a top target for Miami at TE in this class. Starting TE Brevin Jordan hails from Las Vegas (though he attended Bishop Gorman, not Desert Pines), so there’s a connection for Miami to build with Washington on that basis. A player of his size could find a home at TE or DE, but Miami offered Washington at TE. Pairing him with Mammarelli would be the dream scenario for the Canes, but it won’t be easy, as more than 30 teams, including Alabama (ugh, I’m so sick of them already go away), have extended offers to Washington.

5-star ATH Arik Gilbert. The Nation’s #1 athlete and a top 10 player overall, the 6’5” 253lb Gilbert has been among the most notable players in the 2020 class for years. The Marietta (GA) standout could pick any school in America, if he wanted. He, like Washington, could easily be a 5-star at TE or DE, but most schools seem to like him on offense. Watch for Georgia and, you guessed it, Ala-freakin’-bama.

3-star Jonathan Odom. A big bodied TE at 6’6” 240lbs, the Tampa (FL) Jesuit standout Odom is the other local player, along with Mammarelli, Miami has offered in this class. Odom is a classic TE prospect with enough size/strength to be a good blocker, and the height to be a good interior and red zone receiving threat. But, all things considered, Miami would likely have him well behind Washington and Gilbert on the board.

Offensive Tackle

Need: 3 | Committed: 0

4-star Issiah Walker Jr. A top local player from Miami (FL) Norland — a HS which is LITERAL walking distance from Hard Rock Stadium, the 6’4” 284lb Walker Jr. is committed to South Carolina. But, he’s an admitted Canes fan, and recently got an offer from Miami. He’s visited Coral Gables a couple of times, and Miami, along with Florida and others, is laying the foundation for a flip.

4-star Jalen Rivers. This Orange Park (FL) Oakleaf standout has been atop Miami’s 2020 board for years. He attends the same HS where senior LB Shaquille Quarterman once starred, and he’s likely a package deal with a 4-star DE teammate of his (who we’ll talk about when we get to defensive targets). At 6’6” 331lbs, Rivers has the size every team wants in a tackle. Miami will have their work cut out for them to get Rivers to the Gables for College.

4-star Marcus Dumervil. A powerful 6’5” 300lb athlete, Dumervil attends Ft. Lauderdale (FL) St. Thomas Aquinas. Being a star player at a powerhouse program, Dumervil has offers from teams all over the country. He’s the cousin of former Louisville and NFL DE Elvis Dumervil, so there’s athletic pedigree in his family. Oklahoma, Clemson, LSU, and Alabama are among the teams leading his recruitment.

4-star Tosh Baker. When you’re building an offensive tackle, you’d likely start somewhere near Baker’s 6’8” 275lb frame. The Pinnacle (AZ) standout is a top 40 player overall in this class, and is one person Miami has offered as they cast a wide net in search of OTs. Notre Dame is the overwhelming favorite for Baker, though.

4-star Andrew Gentry. At 6’8” 310lbs, Gentry also fits the prototypical size mold for a tackle. The Littleton (CO) Columbine star is a top 60 player in this class, and holds 30 offers at present. BYU and Notre Dame sit atop his recruitment, but with teams such as Alabama (yes, them again) and Michigan having offered, there’s plenty of interest in Gentry.

There are several others with offers, but I don’t think Miami has much traction with them (similar to Baker and Gentry, but I wanted to at least name a couple names). This is the position where I expect Miami to be most proactive with their evaluations and new offers moving forward.

Offensive Guard

Need: 2 | Committed: 0

4-star Jonathan Denis. A one-time Miami commit, Denis attends Homestead (FL) South Dade. He, like so many others, decommitted during Miami’s HC transition, but has visited Coral Gables several times in recent weeks, and Miami is pushing strongly to get him back on board in this class. The 6’3” 285lb Denis has tentatively set August 10th as a decision date, but may push that to the Early Signing Period if needed. Denis plans to early enroll at his chosen school, which would be nice if it were Miami.

5-star Justin Rogers. The nation’s #1 OG prospect, Rogers hails from Oak Park (MI). He’s a 6’2.5” 311lb masher who uses his size to great advantage on the field. It would be kind of shocking if he didn’t go to Michigan or Ohio State, but stranger things have happened, and with OC Enos (who is a native Michigander) and OL coach Barry having both previously worked and recruited in the State of Michigan, there’s maybe a chance? We’ll see.

3-star Richie Leonard. The most recently offered player at this position, Leonard attends Cocoa (FL) HS and is teammates with Caziah Holmes, whom I mentioned earlier at RB. Leonard is committed to Kentucky at present, but multiple teams, including Miami, have recently offered. Leonard was the OL MVP at The Opening Orlando regional, and won that award over players such as Rivers (mentioned above at Tackle). Kentucky has a history of seeing their early commits flip elsewhere, and Miami wants to see that continue with Leonard.

4-star Miller Merriweather-Lewis. A transfer from Ocala (FL) Vanguard to Ocala (FL) Trinity Catholic, Merriweather-Lewis once blocked for Miami QB N’Kosi Perry in HS. A stout 6’3” 298lb prospect, Merriweather-Lewis has nearly 20 scholarship offers at this time. LSU is the overwhelming favorite to sign him at this juncture, however.

While Miami has plenty of offers out at every position on this list, I fully expect the board to continue to expand through this season.

Of the positions where offer/target expansion or alteration will come, I’d say Offensive Tackle would be the #1 spot. Miami needs tackles in a bad, bad way — pure tackle prospects, not undersized or hybrid players. The prototype Tackles: 6’5”+, 280lbs+, long arms, good feet, all that.

Those are (some of) the targets and options for the non-QB offensive positions for Miami in the 2020 recruiting class. Next week, we’ll look at the targets and options on the defensive side of the ball.

Go Canes