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Cryami recruiting in trouble?


Buckeye Beach Bum
Miami left in lurch by QB's late scramble

[email protected]
Published by news-press.com on January 29, 2005

Less a week from National Signing Day, the University of Miami football team doesn't have a firm commitment from a quarterback.

There also is a dearth of skilled-position players.

Still, Miami's 2005 recruiting class, heading into Wednesday's signing day, continues to be highly rated.

When Oceanside (Calif.) High quarterback Derek Shaw de-committed from Miami recently, he left the Hurricanes in a lurch. Miami coaches now are focusing on Carlton Hill, who visited Miami last weekend. After the visit, he said the Hurricanes and South Florida are neck-and-neck.

"Hill is touch-and-go,'' CaneSports managing editor Matt Shodell said. "It seems they're trying to go after a more multi-dimensional quarterback. He's a tremendous athlete. He can throw like (Ken) Dorsey and scramble real well. He can cause problems for a defense.''

Miami traditionally has done best with quarterbacks who are throwers, not runners, but the Hurricanes now are in a bind after Shaw's decision. After verbally committing to Miami in the fall, Shaw called California players and tried to convince them to follow him.

Reality hit, though, after Shaw played in the Florida-California High School All-Star Game in Miami. He realized how far he was from home. He then wrote Hurricanes coach Larry Coker and told him of his feelings.

"They stopped recruiting a lot of quarterbacks. Now, three weeks before (the signing date), he de-commits,'' Shodell said. "A lot of quarterbacks committed elsewhere. If coaches don't feel Hill is coming, they're going to have to pull something out of their hat, I don't know what. I can't see them going with just two scholarship quarterbacks.''

Miami's two quarterbacks on scholarship going into spring practice are redshirt sophomore Kyle Wright and redshirt freshman Kirby Freeman. Both were bothered by injuries last season.

The Hurricanes received a verbal commitment this week from their lone wide receiver to this point, Lavar Lobdell of Syracuse, N.Y. They don't have a tailback committed and may not sign one if Pahokee's Antone Smith doesn't come. Smith, considered one of the nation's top backs, visited Miami last weekend. A family member said he'll be visiting Florida State this weekend.

"Antone is very important, one of the guys still remaining who's a high priority,'' Shodell said. "But it's not the end of the world if he doesn't come. They've still got some good running backs.''

Miami's other more-recent commitments are offensive lineman Matt Pipho of Iowa and defensive lineman Luqman Abdallah of New Jersey.

Recruiting services have the Hurricanes ranked around the top 10. They have commitments from four of the top 100 players, according to Rivals.com, led by offensive lineman Reginald Youngblood of Houston.

Miami has focused much of its recruiting on linebackers and offensive linemen.

The Hurricanes have about 20 scholarships to give after juniors Frank Gore, a tailback, and Roscoe Parrish, a wide receiver, left for the NFL, and cornerback Travarous Bain and tight end Brandon Sebald transferred to Hampton and Hofstra, respectively.

Miami's verbal commitments

• Luqman Abdallah, DL, Princeton, N.J., 6-4, 310
• Spencer Adkins, LB, Naples, 6-4, 210
• Dajleon Farr, TE, Galena Park, Texas, 6-6, 235
• Courtney Harris, DE, Jupiter, 6-4, 230
• Eric Houston, LB, Miami Coral Reef, 6-2, 220
• Bruce Johnson, DB, Live Oak, 6-0, 170
• Lavar Lobdell, WR, Syracuse, N.Y., 6-3, 195
• Jerrell Mabry, RB, Columbus, Ga., 6-0, 255
• Randy Phillips, DB, Belle Glade Glades Central, 6-0, 181
• Matt Pipho, LB, La Porte City, Iowa, 6-6, 265
• Daryl Sharpton, LB, Coral Gables, 6-0, 210
• Dmitri Stewart, LB, Oakland Park, 6-3, 199
• A.J. Trump, OL, Clearwater Catholic, 6-4, 285
• Reginald Youngblood, OL, Houston, 6-5, 280
Urban Meyer to Florida will really draw away some of the skilled players that they were landing for the last few years. Florida is the whore of states when it comes to recruiting, everyone sticks their hands in there and usually cherrypicks a few............ :wink2:
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Miami will still be a good. They won't enjoy the dominance they have enjoyed in the past. The ACC is stacked. The Big East was always a weaker conference. Just like we don't make the NC every year, because we are in the toughest conference in college football.
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MegaWoody said:
Haven't heard much around this board from those old 'Cane boys, have we? Must not be enjoying reality much these days -- now that they're in a real football conference and don't have a schedule that guarantees them a 10 win season every year.
Gotta agree with you on this one Mega - I looked at Miami exiting the Big Least as the equal of Penn State joining the B10. 'Cept it took a little shorter period of time for the heat to be put on them. No matter what unkind words some of us may have for the more ardent 'Cane fan -- fact is that team gets the "pro" treatment from their hometown press. (Who don't seem to understand just how corrosive their spiel can be on future recruiting efforts).

MegaWoody said:
They're in decline, folks, and this may be the year Larry Coker is revealed to the the fraud he really is.
Don't know about fraud. (Don't recall him claiming to be the second coming of Bill Walsh!) Realistically I think a fair assessment goes like this: he got one or two good years in with other coaches kids. Now he's definitely looking down in the mouth.

MegaWoody said:
It only took Donna Shalala four years to mess this thing up. It took her twice that long in Washington.
Man your brutal to that ol gal. But in a brutally honest kind of way. She's gone from Cheez Whiz at the Rose Bowl to Miami Hot Seat
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Miami has continued to be a higly over-rated team. 26 picks in the 1st round in the NFL draft over the past 4 years and they have a grand total of 1 NC to show for all that talent.

They have 2 recruits out there still, RB Atone Smith and DB Ken Phillips. Smith looked to be a lock but now has Auburn and FSU ranked right up with Miami, and Ken Phillips looks to be headed to Knoxville to play for the Vols.

I'm not losing any sleep over it, Miami losing to UNC this year brought a huge smile to my face.
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IMO, reports of Miami's demise are way premature. They signed 3 big time RBs last year, not counting Bobby Washington, who couldn't get into school. One QB will not make of break the Canes. They will get another one next year. I would much rather see the Canes do well than either the Semenholes or the Gaytors.
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