September 02, 2015

Heritage's Brandon Johnson commits to Tennessee

Plantation American Heritage senior wide receiver Brandon Johnson committed to the Tennessee Volunteers on Wednesday.

The four-star prospect chose Tennessee over other notable offers from UM, LSU, Georgia, Clemson, South Carolina and Wisconsin among several others.

Johnson announced his commitment on Twitter shortly after it was first reported by Ryan Bartow of 247 Sports.

"[Tennessee fans] can look forward to a player that is going to do nothing but work hard," Johnson said in an interview with 247 Sports. "I am a good athlete. I am a good football player and a good basketball player and I can compete at the highest level."

The 6-3, 172-pound wide receiver is the son of former Miami Hurricanes and Florida Marlins catcher Charles Johnson. Charles had mentioned to me before that he wanted his son to be a Hurricane, but while Brandon did have a UM offer, the Hurricanes weren't recruiting him as actively as other schools.

Brandon Johnson caught 13 touchdowns in his junior and sophomore seasons combined.

His Patriots host Maryland powerhouse DeMatha Catholic on Saturday night in a game with major national title implications.


Johnson's highlights: 

September 01, 2015

AP Florida high school football rankings - week 2

The Associated Press Top 10 Florida high school football poll, with first-place votes in parentheses, records, rating points and previous rankings:

Class 8A

1. Apopka (17)                        1-0     179     1

 2. Flanagan (1)               1-0     163     2

 3. Christopher Columbus Catholic      1-0     131     3

 4. Kissimmee Osceola                  1-0     130     4

 5. Dr. Phillips                       1-0     108     5

 6. Vero Beach                         1-0     92      7

 7. West Orange                        1-0     63      8

 8. Atlantic Community                 1-0     37      NR

 9. Manatee                            0-1     34      6

10. Miramar                            0-1     17      9


¶   Others receiving votes: South Dade 8, Fort Pierce Central 8, Palm Beach Gardens 5, Southridge 3, Coral Gables 3, West Port 3, Deerfield Beach 2, Mandarin 2, Timber Creek 1, Wellington 1.


Class 7A

                                       Record  Pts     Prv

 1. St. Thomas Aquinas (18)            1-0     180     1

 2. Lakeland                           1-0     158     2

 3. Oakleaf                            1-0     143     3

 4. Dwyer                              1-0     128     5

 5. Venice                             1-0     111     6

 6. BradenRiver                       1-0     73      8

 6.  First Coast                     1-0     73      7

 8. Plant                              0-1     49      4

 9. South Fort Myers                   1-0     29      NR

10. Winter Haven                       1-0     12      NR


¶   Others receiving votes: Viera 9, Columbia 9, Bartram Trail 5, Sickles 3, Tampa Bay Tech 2, Countryside 2, Edgewater 2, Mater Academy 1, South Fork 1.


Class 6A

                                       Record  Pts     Prv

 1. Mainland (14)                      1-0     176     2

 2. Armwood                            1-0     152     3

 3. Miami Central (4)                  0-1     137     1

 4. Niceville                          1-0     122     5

 5. St. Augustine                      1-0     111     8

 6. Heritage                           1-0     86      9

 7. Choctawhatchee                     1-0     46      10

 8. Naples                             0-1     34      6

 9. LakeGibson                        0-1     30      4

10. Tate                               1-0     25      NR


¶   Others receiving votes: Navarre 15, Escambia 15, Dillard 14, Charlotte 11, Carol City 10, Norland 3, Pine Forest 1, Lake Wales 1, Brandon 1. <


Class 5A

                                       Record  Pts     Prv

 1. Plantation American Heritage (17) 1-0     178     1

 2. Hallandale (1)                     1-0     160     2

 3. Bishop Moore                       1-0     148     3

 4. North Marion                       1-0     123     6

 5. Rickards                           1-0     81      10

 6. Godby                              0-1     76      4

 7. Clay                               1-0     66      NR

 8. Coconut Creek                      1-0     58      NR

 9. Wakulla                            0-1     55      5

10. Suwannee                           0-1     18      7


¶   Others receiving votes: West Florida 11, Miami Jackson 8, Jefferson 4, Immokalee 2, Bishop Kenny 1, Palm Bay 1.


Class 4A

                                       Record  Pts     Prv

 1. Cocoa (16)                         1-0     187     2

 2. BollesSchool (1)                  1-0     156     3

 3. Miami Washington (2)               1-0     152     1

 4. Raines                             1-0     132     4

 5. South Sumter                       1-0     94      5


¶   Others receiving votes: Clewiston 19, Glades Central 12, P.K. Yonge 8.


Class 3A

                                       Record  Pts     Prv

 1. Trinity Christian-Jacksonville (17)1-0    179     1

 2. Delray American Heritage (1)       1-0     162     2

 3. Lakeland Christian                 1-0     131     3

 4. Westminster Christian              1-0     100     5

 5. Clearwater Central Catholic        1-0     82      4


¶   Others receiving votes: Oxbridge Academy 48, Tampa Catholic 12, Chaminade-Madonna College Prep 6.


Class 2A

                                       Record  Pts     Prv

 1. University Christian (13)          1-0     162     5

 2. Victory Christian                  0-1     132     T1

 3. North Florida Christian (3)        1-0     121     4

 4. Indian Rocks (1)                   0-1     109     T1

 5. Dade Christian (1)                 1-0     92      NR


¶   Others receiving votes: Northside Christian 29, First Baptist 25, Glades Day 20, Moore Haven 17, Champagnat Catholic 13.


Class 1A

                                       Record  Pts     Prv

 1. FortMeade (14)                    1-0     192     T11

 2. Port St. Joe (4)                   0-0     165     T1

 3. Dixie County                       1-0     126     4

 4. Pahokee                            1-0     113     NR

 5. MadisonCounty (1)                 0-1     73      3


¶   Others receiving votes:Trenton 64, Union County 13, Vernon 8, Northview 6. 

Colleges contact 2017 recruits for first time

At midnight Tuesday, college coaches were able to contact 2017 recruits (juniors in high school) for the first time via direct messages on Twitter, and several talented prospects in Dade and Broward had coaches contact them right away.

Coaches are still unable to contact juniors over the phone, but many rushed to "slide into their DMs," as they say.

Up to this point for 2017 kids, a recruit would've had to reach out to the coach recruiting him -- no contact initiated by the coach -- after that college coach has expressed interest in the prospect to the recruit's high school coach. (Confusing, I know, and I probably could've worded that better. But anyway, here are some of these recruits and the schools that have contacted them):

I will update this as I continue to receive updates.

Stanford Samuels, Flanagan CB: South Carolina, LSU, West Virginia, Clemson, Rutgers, UCF, Georgia, FSU, Oklahoma, Michigan, Tennessee.

De'Andre Wilder, Carol City LB: Michigan, Notre Dame, Alabama, LSU, UM, UF.

Jake Allen, St. Thomas Aquinas QB (UF commit): UF, Alabama, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Colorado, UCF, Rutgers, South Carolina, Duke.

Jake Lichtenstein, Cypress Bay DE: FAU, Purdue, Northwestern, UCF, FSU, Virginia, California.

Kadeem Telfort, Norland OL (UF commit): Alabama, LSU, Arkansas, UM, UCF, UF.

Marco Wilson, American Heritage CB: UM, Tennessee, Alabama, Notre Dame, UF, UCF, FAU.

Waynmon Steed, Miami Central LB (UM commit): UM, UF. 

Naytron Culpepper, American DB: Syracuse, Alabama, UCF, FSU, Middle Tennessee State (according to 247 Sports).

Kevaughn Dingle, Carol City WR: UM, Tennessee (according to 247 Sports).

Daewood Davis, Stranahan WR  (Syracuse commit): Purdue, Temple, UCF, Syracuse, Pittsburgh.

Jonathan Ford, Dillard DE: UM, Alabama, UCF, Purdue, South Carolina.

Mike Epstein, St. Thomas Aquins RB (Illinois commit): Syracuse, Purdue, Tennessee, Kentucky, Cincinnati, FAU, Arizona State, Illinois, Temple, UCF, Duke, Colorado, Western Michigan, Stanford, Miami (OH), Vanderbilt, Central Michigan.

Tyler Dunning, St. Thomas Aquinas LB (UM commit): UM, Pittsburgh, Alabama, UCF, Arkansas, Syracuse, Temple, Purdue.

Clevan Thomas, Flanagan WR: UCF, FAU.

Kyshaun Bryan, American Heritage RB: UF, FSU, Virginia Tech, Clemson, UM, Colorado, Alabama, West Virginia, Arkansas, Ohio State.

*You can notice some consistencies with what schools are recruiting South Florida the hardest.

August 28, 2015

Pierre firm with Canes, Ridley has top three

Senior safety James Pierre reaffirmed how strong his UM commitment is, stating it is "very firm" after Deerfield Beach defeated Cypress Bay 35-14 on Friday night.

Pierre added he doesn't see his mind changing before National Signing Day.

The three-star commit made five tackles in the win over the Lightning, including a touchdown-saving tackle late in the first half as the last man to beat.

Cavin Ridley, the Miami Herald's sixth-best senior in Broward County, is down to a top three and it's all SEC: Tennessee, Alabama and Auburn.

Ridley, a four-star recruit, took a screen pass 70 yards for a touchdown on the opening play of the game and finished with five catches for 123 yards. His older brother Calvin currently attends Alabama.


August 13, 2015

Gatewood steps down at South Plantation to care for ailing father

South Plantation will enter the season with a new football coach in charge.
Doug Gatewood, who has been at the helm since 2010, stepped down Thursday to spend more time with his family and care for his ailing father. 
"Gotta do what ya gotta do," Gatewood said in a text message of his decision to step down.
Assistant Nicholas Dellaria, who has spent 18 years in Broward County as an assistant, has taken over the head coaching duties.
Gatewood compiled a 61-43 record as a head coach including a 31-19 record in his five seasons with the Paladins. He was at Piper before that.

August 08, 2015

August 06, 2015

Aquinas' Epstein commits to Illinois

St. Thomas Aquinas 2017 running back Mike Epstein committed to Illinois on Thursday.

The 6-0, 185-pound three-star junior, who transferred to Aquinas from Cypress Bay in the offseason, chose the Fighting Illini over offers from Cincinnati, UCF, FAU, Temple and New Mexico.

"Big Ten football, great relationship with coaches, want to play big-time football," Epstein listed as reasons he chose Illinois to the Miami Herald.

He became the Fighting Illini's first commit in the class of 2017. Teammate at St. Thomas and senior wide receiver Dominic Thieman is committed to their 2016 class.

Epstein is part of a deep Aquinas backfield that also has Devonta'e Henry-Cole committed to Utah and FAU-bound James Charles.

Below are his sophomore highlights from Cypress Bay.

August 04, 2015

Johnny Huntley commits to Colorado

South Plantation three-star wide receiver Johnny Huntley announced a commitment to Colorado on Tuesday.

Huntley chose the Buffaloes over offers from Louisville, TCU, Tennessee and West Virginia among his list of 17 total offers.

"It felt like home on the visit and they love me," Huntley said in a message.

Colorado is not a school known to dip into the state of Florida in recruiting. Huntley becomes the first Florida prospect in a Colorado recruiting class since Apopka's Henley Griffon in 2010.

The last South Florida high school football player to end up with Colorado was Northeast outside linebacker Josh Hartigan in 2007.

August 03, 2015

Elite Coconut Creek CB Trayvon Mullen releases top three

Coconut Creek cornerback Trayvon Mullen, a high-end four-star prospect, released his top three list of college football programs on Twitter Monday night.

The three lucky schools to have made the cut as the highly sought-after cover corner heads into his senior season -- FSU, LSU and Clemson.

Mullen added that he has no leader among the three and that he is still not blocking out any other school from creeping into that top three.

Mullen is the third-ranked cornerback in the country, according to 247 Sports, with only five-stars ahead of him at the position.

His recruitment has been thought by many to go all the way to National Signing Day -- like Creek coach Kareem Reid told Safid Deen of the Tallahassee Democrat recently.

August 02, 2015

Utah nabs Hallandale QB-WR tandem

One of the top quarterback-wide receiver tandems in South Florida committed to Utah together on Sunday.

The Hallandale duo of Tyler Huntley and Demari Simpkins both announced their commitments to the Utes. First it was Simpkins and Huntley followed by decommitting from FAU and then announcing he would join top target Simpkins at Utah.

Huntley (6-1, 175) and Simpkins (6-0, 176) are both three-star prospects. The two were fresh off a trip out west to Salt Lake City when they decided to commit. 

With former UM legend Dennis Erickson as running backs coach at Utah, the program is experiencing a resurgence in recruiting South Florida. Huntley and Simpkins join St. Thomas Aquinas running back Devonta'e Henry-Cole. The Utes also grabbed Tyson Cisrow and Chris Hart out of Aquinas last recruiting cycle.