Recruits React: Underclassman Day

Recruits React: Underclassman Day

Stefan Adams
The Canes played host to over 50 of the area’s top prospects on campus yesterday for their exclusive Underclassman Day experience. Many of the attendees hold offers from Miami, and there was a special vibe going around on the day, as players were feeling the love and Miami landed 4 commitments from the event (2020 4-star DB Henry Gray and 4-star TE Dominic Mammarelli and 2021 S James Williams and OT Laurence Seymore). The prospects were brought out to UM’s Saturday spring practice, explored campus, talked academics, and tried on team jerseys. While an entire list of the attendees can be found here, we were able to catch up with a few of the players after the fact, and they shared their thoughts on the experience from their eyes.

Class of 2019

Derick Hunter, DT, Fort Myers, FL (Dunbar)

“Best visit by far. Just being alone with coach Richt for 40 minutes in the indoor chopping it up really helped Miami.”

Class of 2020

Henry Gray, CB, Miami, FL (Miami Central) Committed on visit

“We watched practice, talked to the coaches one-on-one. I wanted to see how they’d treat me, but when I got there, it was a real family aspect. My mom likes Miami. She felt like I was a good fit there and she liked that they treated us like family. I was excited (about committing). I talked to all the coaches at once. They told me I was gonna be the centerpiece of the class. It was crazy, coach Diaz was yelling the whole time. Coach Rumph, he was recruiting me back when I was at Miramar, he was excited. I just met coach Banda today, he’s real cool.”

Timothy Smith, DT, Sebastian, FL (Sebastian River)

“It was pretty good. It was a little hot this morning, but I got used to it by the end. It was better than I expected. I loved the way the campus looked, it was like one of those fancy suites, and throughout the presentations, I loved how the Director of Recruiting was straight-forward and didn't sugarcoat anything. Also, I really enjoyed speaking with the defensive line coach, coach Simpson.”

Marcus Dumervil, OT, Fort Lauderdale, FL (St. Thomas)

“It was great, I enjoyed myself. Tons of talent and a loving environment.”

Jaylan Knighton, RB, Deerfield Beach, FL (Deerfield Beach)

“I enjoyed it, the school was amazing. I enjoyed talking to coach Brown, he instilled some good information in me about being a running back.”

Derek Wingo, LB, Fort Lauderdale, FL (St. Thomas)

“It’s home, it’s family. They’re building a great 2020 class with a lot of my close friends. The new facilities they’re building are great, that will all be done by 2020 when I would be there, but all I lack is an offer from them.”

And if Miami does offer?

“It would be one of my top ones mainly because it’s home.”

Jonathan Denis, OG, Miami, FL (South Dade) Offered on visit

“The offer felt great, and what made it even better is Miami is my dream school. The visit was great, I loved being able to watch some of my old teammates like DJ Ivey practice and also one of my friends, Delone Scaife. Seeing how they’ve improved already just shows you the type of school Miami is. They want to get their kids stronger and faster and better overall. Category20 looking pretty nasty after today’s commitments.”

Richie Leonard, OT, Cocoa, FL (Cocoa)

“Today was my first time on the campus and it was everything and more than I expected it to be. I got to watch them practice and see the level of physicality it takes to be a college football player. I also talked to the Offensive Line coach, coach Searels, and I just love the way he coaches. The whole Miami coaching staff brings an energy to the game that you don’t see every day. I had a blast on campus and can’t wait to come back.”

Elijah Roberts, DE, Miami, FL (Columbus) Offered on visit

“The offer felt really good, it was a huge honor. The facility and campus were very nice and the coaches were very relatable and seemed like coaches I can play for and learn from.”

Xavier Restrepo, ATH, Fort Lauderdale, FL (St. Thomas)

“I had a great experience today. Experienced and saw a lot of things I liked: coaches, intensity of practice, campus. Overall great time in paradise.”

Jaheem Joseph, CB, Miami, FL (Monsignor Pace)

“I loved the practice today, high intensity and very competitive. Had a great time talking to all the coaches. I finally introduced my parents to the coaches. My parents really like the campus and how the program really pushes the importance of academics.”

Jaiden Francois, S, Miami, FL (South Dade)

“I loved it, feels like home."

Jovens Janvier, OL, Miami, FL (Champagnat Catholic)

"When I went to the University of Miami, everyone was nice and treating me like I was their own. I saw the practice, it was great and was intense. Then we walked around campus, it was beautiful, and after, put on jerseys. It was perfect."

Andy Garcia, LB, Fort Lauderdale, FL (American Heritage)

“As Underclassman Day today was the first annual one, it was very organized. Learned a lot through coach Diaz and coach Rumph about the standard they set on their defense, as well as the attitude and the player I need to be to become a Cane. Campus tour was great and had a lot of fun visiting the athletic side of ‘the U’. I could only imagine being part of such an elite team like ‘the U’.”

Westley Neal, DT, Miami, FL (Gulliver Prep)

“Today was very exciting. There was a lot of talented guys there, especially in the class of 2020. But I had a lot of fun. I also got a chance to meet the defensive line coach, he was real nice guy. It was also fun trying on the gear, I thought that was nice. But overall, it was a great day to be in paradise.”

Kameron Darville, OL, Miami, FL (Miami Palmetto)

“The experience I had today was pretty cool. I met the coaching staff that my high school coach introduced me to. I met players and coach Stacy Searels, who was an amazing guy and wants me to come back and put in some work at the camp coming up. The coaches really make you feel like you’re at home and treat you like an adult. And I feel like the practice shows why UM is the one of the top colleges in the U.S.”

Gerand Turner, WR, Miami, FL (South Miami Senior)

“I had a great time on my Underclassman Day visit today. I learned a lot drills from coach Dugans and I hope one day he can teach me them."

Bryce Gowdy, WR, Deerfield Beach, FL (Deerfield Beach)

“The visit was an eye-opening experience. It felt like a family and I just loved how the coaching staff treated the players and still pushed the players to compete.”

Kahlil Brantley, WR, Miami, FL (Doral Academy Charter)

“There isn’t any other team that’s going to show you how to do it like Miami does. I loved the visit today. Every time that I step onto the campus, they make you feel at home. They have a lot of great projects going on around the campus that’s going to bring a lot of attention and turn lots of heads. Miami has been my dream school since I was 6 years old and one day I hope to put on a jersey and officially call myself a Cane.”

Louis Rolle, CB, Deerfield Beach, FL (Deerfield Beach)

“My Miami visit was an amazing experience, I got to see how the coaches create the brotherhood. I also got to reunite with some of the coaches and talked about what’s it’s like to be a Cane and what it takes to be a Cane.”

Derohn King, QB, Deerfield Beach, FL (Deerfield Beach)

"I had a good time, the coaches were welcoming."

Marcus Fleming, WR, Miami, FL (Northwestern)

"Miami was good today, I like how smooth it went. It was always exciting and I love how the Canes run they system. I also love how the coaches coach at UM and I like the vibe out there. I spoke with Dugans a couple of times and, so far, I feel like Miami’s the place."

Class of 2021

James Williams, S, Miami, FL (Carol City) Committed on Visit

“I wanted to commit because of the love the coaches showed me. I liked the way the coaches coach and how they treat their players. Also, how practice be so competitive. The visit went awesome. I got to tour the campus and I got to see how everyday life is around the campus.”

Jason Marshall, CB, Miami, FL (Miami Palmetto)

“It was a good experience to see the team practice and all the hard work they put in, meeting with the coaches and them talking to us about the team and what they do to become a better football team. Also, being able to put on some of the gear.”

Derrick Edwards, WR, Miami, FL (Miami Palmetto)

“They teach you to learn and be competitive in what you do. Also, I learned that we are a family and they’ll always be there for you. It’s a school you don’t wanna miss out on, it’s paradise.”

Marcus Tate, OT, Fort Lauderdale, FL (Nova University School)

“I had a great day at Miami. I felt loved and at home. Great culture at Miami. The family tradition they have there is amazing. Plus, I have never seen my mom so happy and she was so interested in everything. They made me feel like I was a priority and it’s something about 'The U' that I love. Every coach showed tremendous amount of love to me and it was a true blessing to be there.”

Comments (21)

I have been a Canes fan for decades and I have not seen this multi level (different years) of recruitment at a high level of excellence from us. AWESOME to see the coaches to this. But equally important a huge congrats to the recruiting support staff, whose name most of us don't even know. The day sounded organized and very very targeted to top recruits. I'm proud to be a CANE and a fan of a team that works as hard as they do and cares to succeed. FINALLY!
If Richt chatted with Hunter for 40 minutes, that should tell us all we need to know.

He's clearly right near the top of the DL board for the '19 class.

I expect a re-commit in the near future.

And, again, a nice write-up from loads of players from the event.

The most talent-rich area in the country - and it's not even close.
And I don't think you can underestimate how this may affect the kids in 2019 we are targeting, too. They are seeing the kind of talent looking to come in behind them and can't help but see that the U is really going places.... Hopefully some of them are inspired to jump in the boat now too!
Future canes gonna have US on top like before The U Is The Standard
Reading the reports, we had about 50 kids at the U Saturday, I have read feedback from about 25 plus of the attendees. Every single one of them walked away feeling we were a family and that they got personal attention from the coaches and staff, all of them called it paradise. All this while a full practices was going on. It speaks volumes of the job the support staff is doing, the organization of the events we are putting together. This is a professional outfit at work, people caring and being accountable. I appreciate my team going all out to win!
We used to play checkers, now with Bobby Fischer Richt we are playing chess.

UM is back in the big leagues now(indoor practice facility, Richt, 'new' stadium, etc), just to put together another good year on the field in 2018
I remember the days of just wishing for one or two elites kids to choose Miami and at the same trying to justify and get excited about guys like Daniel Adderly and Andrew Tallman, and Taylor Cook..
2020 WR class is the best I’ve seen

Manuel, Burton and Britt locked up and still have a bunch of studs to choose from:

Rosemy, Robinson, Fleming, McDougle, etc. simply insane.
Oh and Gerand Turner who seems like a stud too. My gosh the class is loaded
I think we're going to be hearing "Why not make the crib great?" for quite some time.
That seems to be the best great catch phrase..."why not make the crib great "and I love it!!!
There honing in on young talent extremely early. They have the plugs and only should go up from here. Put together another good season and look out.
I've said the same thing. We go win another 10-11 games this year, play for another/win an ACC Title, play in another/win a major bowl game and you could be looking at two, three, four classes in a row full of elite talent/ranked in the top 5 recruiting classes.