January 13, 2014

Recruiting recap: Canes' rough year so far; Gators take some hits, too; Seminoles still on a roll

We’re almost two weeks into 2014, and 23 days away from National Signing Day on Feb. 5.

If you’ve missed anything related to college football recruiting and its ties to South Florida this year, here’s a recap before things get crazier as the dead period ends on Wednesday:

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January 10, 2014

Deerfield Beach's Brandon Powell will no longer enroll at Miami, now heading to Florida

What a difference a few days can make.

Deerfield Beach running back Brandon Powell, who was supposed to enroll at the University of Miami on Wednesday but was waiting on a transcript from his school to finish the process, decided Friday to commit to the University of Florida after receiving a scholarship offer to play for the Gators on Monday.

Powell's father, Brian, confirmed the move in text message to the Miami Herald on Friday morning while the two were heading to Gainesville to complete his enrollment.

"This came about unexpectedly," Deerfield Beach coach Allen Jackson said. "He had a desire to go to UF in his junior year. He wanted [an offer] and it never came. When this came in on Monday, it kind of threw a wrench in everything.”

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January 09, 2014

Booker T. Washington's Nigel Bethel II withdraws commitment to UM for Texas Tech

Miami Booker T. Washington cornerback Nigel Bethel II decommitted from the University of Miami on Wednesday night and announced Thursday that he’s heading to Texas Tech.

Bethel, rated a four-star prospect by Rivals and ESPN, said he knew he wanted to flip his pledge for “about two months now.” He informed UM head coach Al Golden, linebackers coach Micheal Barrow and defensive backs coach Paul Williams before announcing his new pledge on Twitter a day later.

“I felt the opportunity at Texas Tech was great for me,” Bethel said. “I felt like I wanted to leave Miami and take my talents elsewhere.

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Miramar cornerback Tyrek Cole orally commits to Florida State University

Florida State has made its presence felt in South Florida once again.

Miramar cornerback Tyrek Cole – an underrated four-star prospect by several media outlets – committed to FSU on Thursday night, becoming the sixth member of the Seminoles Class of 2015 recruiting class.

“I’m committed to Florida State,” Cole told the Miami Herald around an hour and a half before announcing his decision via his Twitter account. “I just like the program, Coach Jimbo [Fisher] and I felt like I go and play early, and I just want to win games. They win games.”

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Seminoles snatch another Miami Central standout as Calvin Brewton commits to Florida State

Calvin Brewton knew he wanted to play football at Florida State University ever since he received a scholarship offer from the school before his sophomore season at Miami Central.

Late Wednesday night, Brewton – a Class of 2015 safety rated four-star prospect by 247Sports and three starts by Rivals and ESPN – orally committed to FSU. The news was first reported by 247Sports.

“From an academic standpoint, from a football standpoint, to the fan base, the atmosphere – everything about the Noles stood out,” Brewton said to the Miami Herald.

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January 08, 2014

UM, FSU stand tall for Miramar's Kendrell McFadden after announcing decision day

When Kendrell McFadden announced he was going to make an oral commitment to a college on Friday, his family members could not mask their emotions waiting for his arrival home from Miramar High on Wednesday.

“It was like, ‘Oh, you’re committing to UM, you’re committing to UM.’ And I just started laughing,” said McFadden, a Class of 2015 cornerback who just transferred from Hollywood McArthur. “I was like, ‘I don’t know what school I’m committing to yet. We’ll find out Friday.’ Even some of my family members don’t know.”

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Cardinal Gibbons WR George Rushing looking elsewhere after decommitting from Louisville

George Rushing has felt the effects from the fluidity of college football coaching changes first-hand, and now has four weeks to decide on a college to attend.

Rushing -- who led all Broward Country wide receivers with 13 touchdowns last season -- decommitted from Louisville on Wednesday after rumors linked Bobby Petrino to the Cardinals' coaching job, replacing Charlie Strong, now at Texas.

“I’m just dealing with it so far,” the Fort Lauderdale Cardinal Gibbons product said. It’s been frustrating, but I’ll get through it.”

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Miramar's Damon Cogdell joins West Virginia coaching staff

Miramar High's Damon Cogdell, who built the Patriots football program into a state and national power and won a state championship in 2009, has joined the West Virginia coaching staff.

West Virginia coach Dana Holgorsen posted the news on Twitter at around 11 a.m. Wednesday.

Cogdell, who played at West Virginia, responded to Holgorsen's tweet with the following message.

Cogdell leaves behind a winning legacy at Miramar. The Patriots were 12-0 this past season before being upset in the regional finals by Palm Beach Gardens.

He led Miramar to seven consecutive playoff appearances including a state runner-up finish in 2011.

Messages left for Cogdell and the administration at Miramar by The Miami Herald have yet to be returned.

January 06, 2014

AP Class 2A All-State football teams (Dade/Broward players in bold type)

Class 2A First Team Offense

QB _ Drew Eckels, 6-4 190, Sr.; South Daytona Warner Christian

RB _ Jonathan Vickers, 6-0 205, Sr.; TallahasseeNorth Florida Christian

RB _ Demaris Tillmon, 5-11 185, Jr.; South Daytona Warner Christian

WR _ Chris Philpott, 6-4 195, Jr.; TallahasseeNorth Florida Christian

WR _ Michael Smith, 5-11 175, Jr.; Tampa Carrollwood

WR _ Nekari Jones, 6-0 185, Sr.; Lakeland Victory Christian

OL _ Josh Allen, 6-3 290, Sr.; JacksonvilleUniversity Christian

OL _ Alex Harrison, 6-2 265, Jr.; TallahasseeNorth Florida Christian

OL _ Austin Harold, 6-1 270, Sr.; South Daytona Warner Christian

OL _ Seth Penner, 6-2 305, Jr.; Naples First Baptist

OL _ Dillon McGahee, 6-1 230, Sr.; Belle Glade Glades Day

K _ Jordan Bennett, 6-1 170, Jr.; TallahasseeNorth Florida Christian

UT _ Theo Anderson, 6-0 180 So., Largo Indian Rocks Christian


First Team Defense

DL _ Dennis Williams, 6-1 270, Sr.; South Daytona Warner Christian

DL _ Antonio Simmons, 6-3 215, Sr.; JacksonvilleUniversity Christian

DL _ Kevin Bronson, 6-2 300, Sr.; Delray BeachVillageAcademy

DL _ Kedrick Labady, 6-0 215, Jr.; Hialeah Champagnat

LB _ Zach Williams, 5-10 190, Jr.; Naples First Baptist

LB _ Kevin Coy, 6-0 220, Sr.; Lakeland Victory Christian

LB _ Trey Paytas, 5-10 190, Sr.; South Daytona Warner Christian

DB _ Malik Jackson, 5-11 185, Jr.; Hialeah Champagnat

DB _ Jake Stoshak, 6-0 180, Sr.; JacksonvilleUniversity Christian

DB _ Gerald Robinson, 5-11 175, Jr.; Hialeah Champagnat

DB _ Josh Preston, 6-4 170, Jr.; Destin Rocky Bayou

P _ Trevor Smith, 6-2 170, Jr.; TampaCambridge

UT _ Damien King, 5-10 165, Jr.; Largo Indian Rocks Christian


Second Team Offense

QB _ Kato Nelson, 5-11 170, So., Hialeah Champagnat

RB _ Hussein Howe, 6-0 170, So., JacksonvilleUniversity Christian

RB _ Christian Rodriguez, 5-8 175, Jr.; Naples First Baptist

WR _ Riley Escalle, 6-3 185, Sr.; Fort Myers Evangelical Christian

WR _ Tyrone Walker, 5-9 180, Sr.; South Daytona Warner Christian

WR _ Darnell Salomon, 6-0 185, So.; Hialeah Champagnat

OL _ Josh Nicholls, 5-11 270, Sr.; JacksonvilleUniversity Christian

OL _ Jad Shaloub, 5-11 235, Sr.; Vero Beach St Edward's

OL _ Jordan Heldreth, 6-5 260, Sr.; South Daytona Warner Christian

OL _ Jacob McBryde, 6-3 265, Sr.; Largo Indian Rocks Christian

OL _ Jonathan Perez, 6-0 240, Sr.; Dade Christian

K _ Preston Clark, 6-0 160, Sr.; JacksonvilleUniversity Christian

UT _ Elias Early, 5-7 167, Jr.; Tampa Carrollwood


Second Team Defense

DL _ Lonnie Marts III, 6-2 220, Sr.; Jacksonville Harvest Community

DL _ Will Mercer, 6-0 300, Jr.; Belle Glade Glades Day

DL _ Travonte Valentine, 6-4 320, Sr.; Hialeah Champagnat

DL _ Chris Nelson, 6-3 295, Sr.; Lakeland Victory Christian

LB _ Myles Edwards, 6-1 190, Sr.; Quincy Munroe

LB _ Jim Jones, 6-0 220, Jr.; Tallahassee FAMU

LB _ Dominic Cuono, 6-2 220, Sr.; Tampa Carrollwood

DB _ Denzel Irvin, 6-0 190, Sr.; WinterGardenFoundationAcademy

DB _ Max Frankel, 6-0 205, Jr.; Tampa Carrollwood

DB _ Kevon Spence, 5-11 180, Jr.; Belle Glade Glades Day

DB _ Antione Webster, 5-11 175, So.; Hialeah Champagnat

P _ Stephen Yaffe, 6-0 170, So.; Tampa Carrollwood

UT _ Jesus Jimenez, 5-7 140, Sr.; St AugustineFlorida Deaf


Honorable Mention

QB Caleb Lewis, 6-4 200, Jr.; Lakeland Victory Christian; QB Justin Moore, 6-0 205, Sr.; Tallahassee North Florida Christian; QB Taylor King, 6-4 220, Sr.; Tampa Carrollwood; QB Caleb Chapman, 6-3 205, Sr.; Fort Myers Evangelical Christian; QB Garrett Young, 6-1 170, Jr.; Tampa Cambridge; RB Levi Derry, 5-8 175, Sr.; Destin Rocky Bayou; RB Zeke McGaughy, 5-8 150, So.; Largo Indian Rocks Christian; RB Byron Masoline, 5-8 170, Sr. Leesburg First Academy; RB Tamarious Bowes, 6-1 235, Sr.; Jacksonville University Christian; WR Jordan Player, 6-0 200, Sr.; Jupiter Christian; WR Steven Claude, 6-2 185, Jr.; Hialeah Champagnat; UT Franklin Labady, 5-7 165, Sr.; Hialeah Champaganat; UT Darrion Cohens, 5-7 165, Sr.; Moore Haven; DL Malcolm Hills, 6-3 260, Sr.; Jacksonville University Christian; DL R.J. Harris, 6-3 260, Jr.; Tallahassee North Florida Christian; LB Darius Irvin, 6-2 200, Jr.; Winter Garden Foundation Academy; LB TreDez Jones, 6-1 210, Soph.; Tallahassee North Florida Christian; DB Brice Ford, 5-10 170, Jr.; Lakeland Victory Christian; DB Donte Fields, 6-1 165, Sr.; Tallahassee FAMU.

AP Class 3A All-State football teams (Dade/Broward players in bold type)

Class 3A First Team Offense

QB _ Brandon Ziarno, 6-2 195, Jr.; Melbourne Central Catholic

RB _ T.J. Simmons, 5-11 190, Jr.; Lakeland Christian

RB _ Jordan Cronkrite, 6-0 200, Jr.; Miami Westminster

WR _ Travis Rudolph, 6-1 188, Sr.; West Palm Beach Cardinal Newman

WR _ Isaiah Ford, 6-2 180, Sr.; Jacksonville Trinity Christian

WR _ Edwin Thomas, 5-9 170, Sr.; Fort Pierce John Carroll

OL _ Reilly Gibbons, 6-6 300, Sr.; St Petersburg Catholic

OL _ Corey Martinez, 6-5 305, Sr.; Tampa Catholic

OL _ Kaveris Harkless, 6-4 280, Sr. Jacksonville Trinity Christian

OL _ Wyatt Knopske, 6-4 280, Jr.; Sarasota Cardinal Mooney

OL _ Garrett Donaldson, 6-5 265, Sr.; North Palm Beach Benjamin

K _ Michael Conroy, 5-11 175, Jr.; NaplesCommunitySchool

UT _ Timothy Irvin, 5-11 195, Jr.; Miami Westminster


First Team Defense

DL _ Cecil Cherry, 6-2 225, Jr.; Frostproof

DL _ Justus Reed, 6-4 225, Sr.; Clearwater Central Catholic

DL _ Jvon Butler, 6-3 185, Jr.; Melbourne Holy Trinity

LB _ Jeffrey Holland, 6-2 232, Jr.; Jacksonville Trinity Christian

LB _ T.J. Harrell, 6-0 205, Sr.; Tampa Catholic

LB _ Canaan Brown, 6-3 235, Sr.; Clearwater Central Catholic

LB _ Victor Alexander, 5-9 220, Jr.; Jacksonville Trinity Christian

DB _ Kevin Toliver, 6-2 187, Jr.; Jacksonville Trinity Christian

DB _ Javiel Hart, 5-10 165, Sr.; Frostproof

DB _ Deontai Williams, 6-0 175, Jr.; Jacksonville Trinity Christian

DB _ Alexander Thomas, 6-1 175, Sr.; Hollywood Chaminade

P _ Bryan Kirshe, 5-11 175, Sr.; Sarasota Out-of-Door Academy

UT _ Kaleel Gaines, 6-1 170, Jr.; Frostproof


Second Team Offense

QB _ Jordan Watkins, 6-1 180, Jr.; Fort Pierce John Carroll

RB _ Jalin Buie, 5-8 182, So.; Jacksonville Trinity Christian

RB _ Demardre Patterson, 5-10 190, Sr.; Sarasota Cardinal Mooney

TE _ Max Linder, 6-4 227, Sr.; Ocala Trinity Catholic

WR _ Justin Motlow, 5-11 190, Sr.; Tampa Catholic

WR _ Tobias Culpepper, 5-10 165, Sr.; FortMeade

OL _ Jared Shimberg, 6-4 245, Sr.; TampaBerkeley Prep

OL _ Ronnie Smith, 6-2 265, Sr.; Delray Beach American Heritage

OL _ Nick Certain, 6-4 295, Sr.; Ocala Trinity Catholic

OL _ Andrew Boselli, 6-4 280, So.; JacksonvilleProvidence

OL _ Ethan Self, 6-2 255, Sr.; Melbourne Central Catholic

K _ Paul Schumacher, 5-11 195, Sr.; West Palm Beach King's Academy

UT _ Napoleon Maxwell, 5-10 190, Sr.; St Petersburg Admiral Farragut


Second Team Defense

DL _ Elivisi Halapio, 6-3 245, Sr.; St Petersburg Catholic

DL _ Anton Paige, 6-3 195, Sr.; Pahokee

DL _ Bo Peek, 6-2 270, So.; TampaBerkeley Prep

LB _ Ethan Thompson, 5-10 210, Sr.; Clearwater Central Catholic

LB _ Ulysses Gilbert, 6-2 226, Jr.; Ocala Trinity Catholic

LB _ Tre Watson, 6-2 215, Sr.; Tampa Catholic

LB _ Rashod Broadway, 5-9 205, Jr.; Miami Westminster

DB _ Ben Edwards, 6-1 205, Jr.; Jacksonville Trinity Christian

DB _ Javonta Swinton, 6-1 180, Sr.; Boca Raton Pope John Paul

DB _ Waynedriko Smith, 6-0 178, Sr.; Maitland Orangewood Christian

DB _ Dontrell Johnson, 5-11 165, Sr.; Pahokee

P _ Nick Rabinowitz, 6-2 215, So.; Delray Beach American Heritage

UT _ Austin Leach, 6-1 200, Sr.; Sarasota Cardinal Mooney


Honorable Mention

QB Hunter Boyette, 6-0 190, Sr.; Miami Westminster; QB Christian Alexander, 6-3 210, Jr.; Lakeland Christian; QB Drew Tomaini, 5-11 200, Sr.; Naples Community School; QB Xavier Gaines, 6-3 215, So.; Frostproof; QB Joe Boden, 6-0 190, Sr.; Daytona Beach Father Lopez; RB Devin Singletary, 5-10 185, So.; Delray Beach American Heritage; RB Marcus Watson, 5-11 210, Sr.; Montverde Academy; RB Jacquan Fuller, 5-8 180, Jr.; St Petersburg Catholic; RB Tony Jones, 6-2 190, So.; St Petersburg Catholic; RB DaQuan McGriff, 5-10 175, Sr.; Boca Raton Pope John Paul; RB Mason Plante, 5-10 175, Jr.; Orlando First Academy; TE Devonaire Clarington, 6-6 235, Jr.; Miami Westminster; WR Tristyn Bennett, 6-2 180, Sr.; Jacksonville Providence; TE Jake Bargas, 6-4 230, Jr.; Boca Raton St Andrew's; WR Max Erdman, 5-8 160, Jr.; Melbourne Central Catholic; WR Andrew James, 5-10 170, Jr.; Fort Lauderdale Westminster Academy; OL Michael McFarlane 6-3 270, Sr.; Frostproof; OL Josh Peters, 6-2 295, Sr.; Orlando First Academy; UT Rashaun Croney, 6-0 175, Sr.; Pahokee; DL Michael Taylor, 6-3 210, Sr.; Orlando First Academy; LB Cortavious Givens, 5-11 235, Sr.; St Petersburg Admiral Farragut; LB Bobby Martin, 6-2 220, Jr.; Maitland Orangewood Christian; LB Connor Dorris, 6-2 235, Sr.; Clearwater Central Catholic; DB Willie Conley, 5-9 155, Sr.; Tampa Catholic; P Austin Iglehart, 5-9 165, Sr.; Tampa Berkeley Prep; UT Brad Peace, 6-1 170, Sr.; Lakeland Christian.