**Miami’s pursuit of another defensive lineman is tricky. Coach Kuligowski has gone to see multiple 4-star prospects across the country over the last week and a half, including USC commit Hunter Echols, Louisiana product Phidarian Mathis, and Elijah Conliffe out of Hampton, Virginia.
Although Miami would ideally like to add another defensive lineman in the class, early playing time for these targets might be difficult considering what Miami is returning in the front-4. After next season though, the window of opportunity will be wide-open because the Canes could lose all five defensive tackles. Echols, Mathis, and Conliffe are expected to take official visits to Miami, but Echols and Mathis are highly unlikely at this point, according to sources. Echols is strong in his commitment to the Trojans and Mathis is likely headed to Bama or LSU.
I do however, expect Miami to become a serious threat for Conliffe. He has been one of Coach Kuligowski’s favorites – Kool has seen him play twice this year, the first time being when Miami traveled to Charlottesville for their game against Virginia. A source said that Miami is making him a bigger priority than the other schools on him at the moment, which could play a role in his decision. Miami in January is the only visit that Conliffe has set right now. He went to see Penn State in early November as well.
**C.J. Henderson to UF continues to look imminent, and I’m hearing he could be making that announcement within the next couple of weeks. Alabama has made a recent run, with Mario Cristobal spearheading his recruitment, but the Gators look to have won the battle. Henderson hasn’t told Miami it’s over, but people close to Henderson say that his decision has essentially been made.
**On the flip side, I have Miami as the favorites to land JUCO CB Jhavonte Dean
. In my update with him last night, it is evident that the staff is trying to show him how much they need him. I posted a few weeks back that they would be locking in on a JUCO target at this spot – without a doubt, Dean is that guy. I’m told that Miami is really selling the opportunity to play in front of his family, particularly his mother. He will visit Arizona State this week, which I’ve heard is not a serious threat here. Dean’s only other official visit set now is to Miami on January 13th, when the staff plans to pull out all the stops for his mother too.
**Not much new on Brian Edwards
, who will visit Miami the final weekend of January. I still expect him to sign with the Hurricanes, but a source close to his recruitment said “a few more schools are circling the wagons” and that Colorado is a real dark horse here. Colorado is selling Edwards on being “the type of recruit the program has never had”.
UF coach Randy Shannon visited him at school yesterday, but I’m told he still doesn’t have an offer from them. The source added that Edwards’ offer could depend on whether or not the Gators hold on to Elijah Blades from Pasadena – USC might make a run late and pry him away from UF. Even then if the Gators offer him, Miami has had him as a priority and Edwards senses that UF has been slow playing him.
Edwards has four total visits set – Colorado this weekend, Louisville on January 14th, Syracuse on January 20th, and Miami the 27th.
**I posted this in the recruiting chat yesterday, but I will expand a bit about what Miami is doing at the receiver spot.
will be in the class despite Tennessee and Larry Scott making a run at him. Miami was not sure the caliber of player they were getting when he committed, but a source said the Canes coaches are really excited about what they’ve seen from Njoku this season – and by the way, he is up to 6’6”. Here are clips from his first two playoff games this season. Miami WR coach Ron Dugans was in New Jersey on Sunday night watching his Wayne Hills team advance to the championship.
There is still a lot of confidence that they will flip Mike Harley
from West Virginia.
They will land a JUCO prospect – and no I don’t have names yet, but if the way they’ve worked quickly on Jhavonte Dean
is any indication, then we could see something develop very quickly there. Remember, this is the time of year when coaches are looking at JUCO prospects’ transcripts, which is always a possible hold up.
The staff has been confident on Devonta Smith
for months, but it's just tough to see that one holding up. He was not a priority for Les Miles’ staff at LSU, but that has now changed under Ed Orgeron.
They will round out the receivers class with one of Smith, Jerry Jeudy
(unlikely but still possible), and a name we haven't heard yet.
Canes fans are worried and I understand why, but it does not make ANY sense to me that this staff would just be sitting around waiting and not offering other possible options. Miami sources have told me for months that they’ve been on commits to other schools for a while and they’ve kept it under wraps until recently.
For example, look at Jhavonte Dean
(Alabama), Echols (USC), Cyrus Fagan
(FSU), and even recently Corey Gaynor
, who flipped from Minnesota. It is highly possible that the same can be said about the receiver position.
It's similar to what's happening at offensive line with the Heritage kids (Kai-Leon Herbert
and Tedarrell Slaton
) and part of my reasoning for being so confident on them along with other things I've heard. We know Miami needs offensive linemen more than anything, but if Miami coaches felt like they were in big trouble, we would see them scrambling and sending out offers left and right or even making a stronger push for Kadeem Telfort
. The same logic applies at wide receiver, where they seem to be holding firm on the same names that have been on the radar.
**For the second time in the span of a week, Miami offensive coordinator/running backs coach Thomas Brown was in Maryland to visit top running back target Anthony McFarland
. It was great timing by Brown because McFarland was fresh off his visit to hometown Maryland. Sources tell CanesInSight that Miami is poised to land his commitment at the Under Armour All-American game.