Welcome to the ninth 2019 edition of the column I like to call “The Freshman 15”. If you’re a first time reader, this will be a focus on the rankings and the order of the top 15 uncommitted (to Miami) recruits the coaching staff is pursuing.
The order will be based mainly on:
How likely a recruit is to commit to Miami at the time
Miami's need at their position
This column will be updated throughout the cycle each month and will show movement up or down for each recruit as the list is updated.
A lot has changed in the past month and let me just get this out of the way: I’m not as confident on almost everyone from this board as I was in October. Miami has actually not won a game since last month’s Frosh 15 was written. The Canes had been selling an improving program to the 2019 class, but have instead completely collapsed on the field this year, a few position coaches are on the hot seat, and there have been multiple decommits in Surge19. Not exactly the perfect storm to recruit in. Also, for the first time this cycle, we have a change at the #1 spot.
Let’s get into the board for November.
1. Khris Bogle, DE, Fort Lauderdale, FL (Cardinal Gibbons) (Last: 2)
Evaluation: Bogle makes his living in the opponent backfield and it’s tough for offensive linemen to square up on him with his speed off the edge. While he needs to add weight for the next level, Bogle’s first step is devastating and he has the potential to be a dynamic pass rusher for whichever team lands his services.
In The Mix: Seems like an informal top 7 of Miami, Alabama, Tennessee, Texas A&M, Ole Miss, Oklahoma, and UF.
Latest: Bogle moves into the number 1 spot on the board, but that’s mostly a product of Evan Neal falling than anything overly positive coming from Bogle in the past month. Bogle has been in Miami for 3 home games this season, while seeing UF on an unofficial earlier this month. He plans to take a Miami official in December, and his final OV will go to Ole Miss, OU, or UF before he makes his decision in January. Last weekend, Bogle was in Tuscaloosa for his Alabama official visit, and of course, the Tide made a move for the talented pass rusher. It seems Bama starts to push for anybody UM is in on these days and the Tide are likely the new team to watch out for here behind the Canes, although UM should still be considered the favorite until proven otherwise. Tennessee really hurt themselves by burning their OV in the spring, and Bogle has cancelled multiple planned trips to see the Vols unofficially since.
Evaluation: The way Haselwood is able to elevate and sky above defenders to make a play is truly jaw-dropping. Haselwood could be completely covered, and his QB will still throw it up to him because he’s that confident that Haselwood will go make and play on it. And the 5-star receiver usually does. He’s just playing at a different level than everyone else at all times and his motion seems effortless as he glides past defenders and under a pass.
In The Mix: This is a UGA, Miami, and Auburn battle for Haselwood, with Tennessee starting to creep in.
Latest: For all the top targets and commits that seem to be backing off Miami, oddly enough, it’s the highest-ranked UM target that is still as high on Miami as ever. Haselwood has been a frequent wearer of UM gear during the season, and you can always find him posting pictures of himself in Canes clothing on social media. Instead of a known contender like UGA or Auburn gaining momentum to challenge Miami, it has actually been a brand-new team, Tennessee, that has caught Haselwood’s attention lately and is rising with him. That should be seen as a good thing for Miami, as the Vols are just as bad as UM on the field this season and Haselwood has a much longer-standing relationship with the Canes. Oklahoma continues to be listed in some articles among his favorites, but I can tell you OU has been out of this for a long time. Despite Haselwood’s recent Auburn visit, Miami is in as good a spot as ever.
Evaluation: Running back, safety, receiver, quarterback, kicker, don’t matter. The book on Richards is simple: get him on the roster, figure out his position later. He’s that good. His speed and football instincts will play anywhere, he loves offense, and has great family lineage.
In The Mix: Miami, Auburn, Florida, Penn State, and Tennessee make up Richards’ top 5.
Latest: With Marcus Crowley’s defection to Ohio State earlier this month, Richards’ importance to this class has never been higher. Richards can now be sold that he will be the only running back that Miami takes this cycle, something that would have seemed crazy just a few months back. While there’s been some Penn State buzz here, and I do think Richards really enjoyed his official visit to Happy Valley last month, I am not ready to concede my UM pick here. Miami’s going to be able to get him back on campus multiple times before he makes his decision in February, and he’s one prospect I can say for certain that won’t get swayed by negative recruiting against UM. Richards will OV to Auburn on Dec. 8th weekend.
Evaluation: Summerall is a Gregory Rousseau clone. His length and speed at his size are unreal and give him a huge advantage over his competition. I also love the way he uses his hands to create space for himself. Obviously he has to put on more weight for the next level, but he has the frame to do just that.
In The Mix: Miami, Florida, FSU, LSU, Auburn, and Nebraska made Summerall’s top 6.
Latest: Summerall’s importance to this class is much higher these days with UM DE commit Cam Williams looking like he’s not a lock to qualify and JJ Weaver no longer a viable option. The Lakeland product made a visit to UM earlier this month to watch the Duke game and he had a good time on the visit. He immediately scheduled a return trip and will officially visit Coral Gables a week before early signing day on Dec. 13th, which is huge for UM since Summerall plans to sign early. The Canes have no doubt made a positive move here in the past month, but the Gators will still be tough to beat out. Summerall plans his first official visit of the cycle to Nebraska this weekend.
Evaluation: Wydermyer is a wide receiver in a tight end’s body and runs like a deer in the open field. His frame, speed, and length are extremely tantalizing and the Texas product is able to line-up all over the formation to threaten a defense. He could use more work as a blocker, but Wydermyer has an impressive ceiling nonetheless.
In The Mix: Miami, Bama, and Texas A&M are his top 3, with Ole Miss trying to break in.
Latest: Wydermyer’s official visit to Miami earlier this month was absolutely a game-changer, and it seems the trip moved UM to the top of his recruitment as of now. The Canes hit a home run, and even got his parents completely on board with Miami as well. He dispelled a few misconceptions about the school and campus, and furthered his bond with the staff. In my mind, one of the biggest overlooked positives is that Wydermyer has also already seen main contender Texas A&M for a gameday this season on an unofficial visit, so it won’t be stadium atmosphere on an A&M OV that sways him to the Aggies. Wydermyer also does not care at all about UM’s down season in 2018, wants to be part of the solution, and loves how Miami uses the TE. With a planned decision set for Dec. 20th and no other officials set up at this time, Miami is in a very good spot here. As always, a lot could hinge on if he becomes a take for Alabama, as they’ve been in touch with him more recently. We’ll also have to see if his Miami excitement wanes at all once more time passes from his visit, because UM won’t be able to get him back on campus before his decision.
Evaluation: Stevenson just smothers receivers in the passing game and has that rare ability to take half the field away from an opposing offense. The Southridge star runs well for his size and features elite closing speed, while also showing potential as a rangy safety prospect.
In The Mix: This is all Miami and Georgia, with Auburn also making a push for Stevenson’s signature as well.
Latest: Stevenson’s bump on this board is more reflective of how poorly UM has been recruiting lately with other targets, not a raise of confidence in him coming to Miami. It seems like Stevenson mended any broken fences he had with the Bulldogs on his UGA official visit last weekend and I believe he should still be considered a UGA-lean. That doesn’t mean UM is out, and Miami will be the pick if he can’t bear to leave home, but as of now, I see Stevenson in red, black, and white. Instead of Bama, it was actually Auburn that emerged as the third team here, and Stevenson enjoyed his OV there earlier this month. The Tigers are still chasing UGA and UM, though.
Evaluation: At 6’7” 375 pounds, I just call Neal “The Wall”. Neal has gone up against numerous top defensive linemen at various events and they were all hopelessly outmatched against him. He’s too big to get around and can overwhelm power rushers that try and go through him, while he is also quick enough to stone speed rushers on the edge. There's no doubt he's a true left tackle and has elite upside.
In The Mix: Bama should be considered the heavy favorite, followed by Miami, FSU, Oklahoma, and LSU in that order.
Latest: What a difference a month makes. All the momentum is with the Tide right now and I believe Bama should be considered the heavy favorite to land Neal’s commitment. I never like to use the words “done deal”, because of how quick things can change in recruiting and I’m going to keep Neal on the board because of this slight possibility, but we’re talking about Bama here. In an effort to keep things transparent, I have heard from a separate source that UM is not out of this, but I’m personally not buying it and would need to hear much more to change my stance. Miami certainly won’t give up here whatsoever, and still plan to get Neal on campus for an official in the near future.
Evaluation: Washington is at his best when he’s on the move and pulling or blocking out in space. He plays with redirect power in his upper body and strikes his target with menace. Looks much more advanced in the run game, while his pass blocking is still improving. Washington needs to redistribute some of the weight in his upper half and he plays a little high, but has good potential to mold.
In The Mix: The Mississippi State commit is taking a look at South Carolina and Miami.
Latest: I’m very close to moving Washington above Neal, but I’m not quite at that point just yet. We had been hearing very good things about Washington’s Miami recruitment, with the Canes pulling even with MSU and looking more and more likely to complete the flip. Of course, that was all before the losing streak. News with Washington has gone quiet since and it’s unclear exactly where things stand with him now. I’d have to say Mississippi State should still be considered the slight favorite to sign him, but there’s no doubt Miami is making an all-out push for him now that Neal is looking like a Bama-lean.
Evaluation: A flex tight end with wide receiver traits, Zipperer can line up all over the field and make a defense pay in a variety of ways. He has soft hands to reel in passes and creates separation with ease. He’s not just a pass-catcher though, and shows the ability to block with anger and take defenders out of plays.
In The Mix: Alabama, Oklahoma, Florida, LSU, Penn State, and Miami have made Zipperer’s top 6.
Latest: Of anyone on this board, I think Zipperer has been most affected by Miami’s poor performance on the field this season. A lot of it was simply the timing; UM finally was starting to take the momentum from UF… then they lost 4 straight, with Zipperer also not making his planned Miami trip for the Duke game. The Gators are in the best spot for Zipperer right now, but Miami has been in this position before. It remains to be seen if they can generate the momentum to swing him back, though. It’s also curious that Zipperer has not set up any official visits yet, and his recruitment is likely to extend into the later signing period, so time will be on UM’s side. However, I see Wydermyer being much more likely as the second TE in this class at this point.
Evaluation: Listed as an end by most sites, Fuller also plays DT and looks mighty comfortable on the inside. His rip move is so violent and you’re just taken back by the ease at which he was throwing some of the top O-Linemen out of his way. Fuller looks like a budding star at the position with the top-tier speed and hands to give larger, slower offensive guards fits.
In The Mix: The FSU commit is looking around at programs like Miami, Alabama, and UF.
Latest: If Zipperer was the most affected by the losses, I’d say Fuller has been the second most. Fuller has been the recruit most trumpeting on-field results affecting his decision, and even though they beat the Noles, Miami really missed a golden opportunity to sway him with a 10-2, division championship type season. Miami is not even a guarantee to get an official from him anymore, as Fuller is only sure he will OV to FSU, UF, and Bama at this point. Fuller made his first campus trip of the season to UF last weekend, and I’d say the Gators are in the best spot for the flip as of now, in part because they look like the best team of the Big 3.
Evaluation: Pay no attention to Williams’ ranking, the kid is legit. Williams played QB for Sebring this season out of necessity, but was much more of a runner than a passer. Williams is a yards after contact machine that is very tough to bring down and runs through arm tackles. He’s extremely decisive with his cuts and has the build Mark Richt loves without sacrificing burst.
In The Mix: The App State commit has blown up recently, and is now considering new offers from Auburn and UGA, along with UM.
Latest: Offering Williams is certainly a response to UM’s RB board completely crumbling lately, but make no mistake, Williams is not your average Plan B. Williams is Edgerrin James’ nephew, and has been practically begging for a UM offer for over a year now. If Miami would have offered earlier, Williams might already be committed to UM right now, but at this juncture, the Canes will have some making up to do after ignoring him for so long. Still, I have heard Miami is in a very good spot to eventually land Williams and, as long as they show him consistent love, will have a chance to lock him up on his official visit weekend of Nov. 23rd. Williams also has OV’s set up to Auburn (Nov. 17th) and UGA (Dec. 14th). Of the two, I had heard UGA was pushing hardest, but it’s unclear if Kenny McIntosh’s commitment to the Bulldogs yesterday changes anything here.
Evaluation: Eboigbe wants to play end at the next level, and Miami is recruiting him there as of now, but with his body type, Eboigbe will almost certainly grow into a DT in UM’s system. Eboigbe is a nasty defensive lineman that shows a mean-streak. He rips through blockers and pushes linemen out of the way like they weren’t even there, and demonstrates the kind of aggressiveness that would serve him well on the inside.
In The Mix: The Bama commit is considering Miami, Tennessee, and UF.
Latest: UM’s relationship with Eboigbe is pretty fresh and obviously he is committed to Bama, so it is hard to tell just how much traction is here. Still, I know Jess Simpson has made at least some headway here and has built a strong relationship with Eboigbe in a short time. It also says a lot of his interest that he scheduled an official visit to UM even though he is still pledged to Nick Saban, who is notorious for strongly discouraging his commits taking other OV’s. If Eboigbe takes that Dec. 7th trip to Coral Gables, you never know what could happen, but for now it’s likely he will sign with the Tide in the end. Eboigbe already took an OV to UF and is working on setting up an OV to Tennessee as well.
Evaluation: Nunn flies all over the field, showing great range and recovery speed. It’s Nunn’s length that really sets him apart though, as he’s just able to get to so many more passes and tip away close calls. Receivers find it very difficult to separate from him and it seems Nunn’s only improving every time I see him.
In The Mix: Miami, Syracuse, and Bama are heavily involved here.
Latest: Nunn is most definitely the first recruit to commit and then decommit all in the downtime between Freshman 15 updates. Nunn committed to Miami back on October 18th, just days after decommitting from Syracuse and saying he wanted to take some visits before landing on another decision. However, Nunn’s commitment to Miami lasted only two and a half weeks and Nunn’s family decided they want him out of the state due to some bad influences locally. He will now use the opportunity to see some other schools. I expect Miami to keep pursuing him, and the Canes aren’t completely out of it, but obviously recommits are rare in recruiting and Miami has to get his family back on board again. We’ll have to see if Nunn is the exception to the rule.
14. Akeem Dent, CB, West Palm Beach, FL (Palm Beach Central) (Last: 14)
Evaluation: Dent is an extremely fluid and athletic corner, but what really sets him apart from the pack is his violent and physical demeanor on the field. Dent is one of those rare corners that is not afraid to lower the wood and take somebody’s head off, as he plays the line of scrimmage very well. He also has an extra gear that makes him seem like he was shot out of a cannon. Dent’s ball skills are off the charts as well. What’s not to love? He’s the complete package.
In The Mix: The FSU commit seems to only be showing interest in Miami, Clemson, and Alabama other than the Noles.
Latest: I still don’t see Dent coming to Miami whatsoever, but he is at least now starting to make visits. Miami certainly has never given up on him, and their persistence paid off in the form of an unofficial visit from Dent in the home opener against Savannah State, as well as a visit for the FSU game. Dent also took an unofficial visit to FSU for the Clemson game last month, which was the worst loss in Noles’ history. As Dent is more focused on the 8A Playoffs, his mother has taken more of the reigns of his recruitment lately, and she is in the process of setting up officials to Alabama and Clemson. Mom is a big fan of the staff at Miami and it is likely the Canes will get an official here as well. Still, I’d say Alabama has the best shot at Dent if he were to flip from FSU.
15. Jordan Battle, S, Fort Lauderdale, FL (St. Thomas) (Last: 13)
Evaluation: Battle has next-level instincts at DB and displays great hip-flip when running with receivers. He was consistently impressive throughout many camps this off-season and will make an outstanding defensive back at the next level.
In The Mix: The Ohio State commit is considering others like OU, Bama, and Miami.
Latest: The fact that I think Akeem Dent is more likely to come to Miami at this point than Battle says a lot. At first it was Oklahoma that had really made a move here, but lately, it’s been Bama getting involved and making an impression. With Urban Meyer’s health and future at OSU in question, I’m hearing Battle is not as set with the Buckeyes as he was earlier in the season. However, if he did want to move on from OSU, it would be the Tide or Sooners making the flip, not the Canes.
If you were to tell me 3 months ago, that come November, CIS would have more confidence in Haselwood signing with this class than 3 of our legacies, Even Neal, MAR, Kenny Mcintosh, I’d laugh it off in front of you, but 3 months later here we are...when sh** hits the fan, it hits hard. recruiting is so crazy
It’s possible if we close well, I think we are in it more than people realize with several of our targets obviously Haselwood and bogle and Stevenson. We have lost 4 straight but their comments about Miami recentlyor where we stand even without an official visit pretty encouraging if you ask me.(talking about bogle and Stevenson)
It’s possible if we close well, I think we are in it more than people realize with several of our targets obviously Haselwood and bogle and Stevenson. We have loss 4 straight but their comments about Miami recentlyor where we stand even without an official visit pretty encouraging if you ask me.(talking about bogle and Stevenson)
Would hate to lose neal but look around you see all of these dynamic offenses, even at places like ucf, do they have someone like neal on their line to block for them? No but they have an explosive scheme and in this day and age of football to be a great offense that’s what it’s all about. An excellent scheme can hide deficiencies while a sh*tty one can’t and that’s what we are experiencing