July 17, 2014

Cypress Bay looks to a number of quality underclassmen in 2014

Cypress Bay's Mark Guandolo has been coaching high school football long enough to know that what you put into this game, you get back along the way.

No matter where he has been during his impressive coaching career, he has lived by the philosophy that hard work and dedication simply has no substitute.

While missing the playoffs in 2013 didn't sit well - especially the year after this football program advanced to the state finals for the first time ever - there is a reason that while this program may not be a favorite to win a competitive district, there will be no quit in the Lightning.

"If you play this game, you have to understand that there are no shortcuts," Guandolo said. "Any team that I have ever been involved with knows that when the season begins, the objective is to win every game and go as far as you can."

Even in a year where Cypress Bay a number of key prospects from that impressive 2012 team that dropped a heart-breaker to Apopka in the 8A title game, last year was a season that this team had numerous chances to grab a playoff spot. This year, even as Miramar and Flanagan go in as favorites to grab the top spot, sleeping on a team coached by Guandolo would be a huge mistake. He has a way of making the best outs of a situation that sometimes is tough on the surface.

The Lightning have a number of seniors coming back. Prospects that expect to grab leadership and help the talented underclassmen along the way.
  On offense, this senior class features quarterbacks Cale Berger (5-11, 200) and receivers Ryan Dugan (5-10, 170) and Cole Moxie (6-0, 175) as well as linemen Nathaniel Crowley (6-0, 230), Samuel Antoine (6-3, 265) and Mike Felix (5-11, 270).

On defense, there are ends Adam Cuellar (6-0, 195) and Matt Bukovi (6-0, 220), linebackers Esteban Delfino (6-3, 225) and Jake Truske (5-10, 185) and defensive back Nathan Seidle (5-11, 165).

The strength of this football team just may be in the quality underclassmen. Players like quarterbacks Kole Stealy (6-1, 170) and Jacob Carrio (5-9 165), running backs Jeo Rodriguez (5-9, 185), Davonte Gayle (5-10, 185) and Justin Nesmith (5-8, 195), receiver Anthony Courcelle (6-1, 170), and linemen Brice Biggs (6-4, 230), Justice Silvera (5-8, 215) and Thomas Mosca (5-9, 180).

Defensively, Cypress Bay boasts linebackers Alex Cassitta (6-0, 195), Christian Gomez (6-1, 200) and Jarrett Hanks (5-10, 190) - and impressive secondary performers in Joshua Beneby (5-11, 165), Darrell Malone Jr. (5-11, 165) and R.J. Rosario, a 5-11, 190-pounder.

With running backs Michael Epstein (6-0, 190), the Lightning have perhaps the most impressive Class of 2017 weapon in south Florida. This one time youth football standout elevated the team last year as a freshman.

In addition to Epstein, the sophomore class will feature defensive end Jake Lichtenstein (6-3, 190) and defensive back/running back Daniel Montoya (5-9, 180).

"I have followed Coach Guandolo at Chaminade, Pace, Miami Southridge, Miramar and now at Cypress Bay," said Dana Wiley of Prep Films. "This is a man who can get everything out of an athlete and bring out the best in them. When he almost beat Central that year with a number of 10th graders, he proved to many that you can never count his teams out."

We are always looking to help promote our area recruits for the current Class of 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018. All you have to do is send a You Tube or Hudl link and information about the athlete to: Larry Blustein at Floridakids1@aol.com.

Follow Larry on Twitter at twitter.com/larryblustein.

South Florida Class of 2017 Football Prospects

Productive June Boosts UM's Recruiting Perception

8A Football: Monarch May Be The Biggest Surprise!

Bush, Flanagan Have Built A Quality Football Team

Columbus will rely on a more experienced team in 2014

Not Paying Attention To Miramar Would Be A Mistake!

Top Prospects Start To Rise For The Class of 2018

My good friend Coach J has a pulse on the young football prospects in south Florida, and always keeps me updated on what players to keep an eye on.

While I have covered youth football for over 30 years, and have often promoted many before they ever reached high school, there are a number of quality coaches who have the opportunity to see many of these prospects at the ages of 7 and 8, and keep a close eye on their progress through the years.

Coach J has always been on the cutting edge, and sends me youngsters to keep on the radar. Today, we have some prospects for the Class of 2018 - the group of rising freshmen who figure rot make a solid impact at the varsity level - right away.

While these are just a few of the prospects who will emerge, we will continue to promote football talent that will enter high school and bring them right to you. Remember, it's all about getting the names out there for the over 2,000 college coaches who follow us daily and weekly.

If you have additional prospects to send our way, you can e-mail me at Floridakids1@aol.com and I will list them and send them on to Coach J as well.

1. Cajun Smith, WR, W. Palm Beach Oxbridge Academy
2. Nikolas Bonito, DE, Fort Lauderdale University School
3. Samuel Llewellyn, RB, Fortt Lauderdale University School
4. Marlon Pelot, LB, Miami Booker T. Washington
5. Chatarius Atwell, Athlete, Miami Northwestern
6. Miles Jones, Athlete, Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas
7. Jason Swann, OL, Pembroke Pines Somerset Academy
8. Shannardo Houston, RB, North Miami
9. Herman McCray, TE, W. Palm Beach Oxbridge Academy
10. Chad Kiernan, OL, Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas
11. Sharron Chester, DL, Miami Carol City
12. Jamain Lovett, DE, W. Palm Beach Oxbridge Academy
13. Terrance Gray, OL, Miami Monsignor Pace
14. Jordan Johnson, RB, Plantation

July 11, 2014

South Florida Class of 2017 Football Prospects

Over the past 5 plus decades, our main objective is to promote as many prospects in south Florida as possible.

With the many avenues we have to reach college coaches across the country, getting the names of these prospects out is the only thing that matters. Thanks to coaches, players and our advantage of seeing so many athletes, we have compiled these lists for many years, resulting in scholarship offers down the road - helping in the process.

This list of Class of 2017 prospects will be one that will be viewed by thousands of coaches, prospects and fans who follow high school football.

This list is only designed to promote and give players the exposure that they deserve. We will continue to add to this list daily and also send out - with video links to college coaches from Florida to Hawaii and everywhere in between.

If you have a prospect that should be added to this growing list, please drop Larry Blustein a note at Florida kids1@aol.com.

In addition, we are always looking to help promote our area recruits for the current Class of 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018. All you have to do is send a You Tube or Hudl link and information about the athlete to: Larry Blustein at Floridakids1@aol.com.

Jake Allen, 6-3, 195, Fort Lauderdale Cardinal Gibbons
Angel Alvarez, 5-10, 170, Miami Braddock
Tyree Bibby, 6-2, 200, Hialeah American
Jason Brown, QB/LB, 6-2, 165, Plantation American Heritage
Tacarrius Brown, 6-0, 165, Hialeah Miami Lakes
Dylan DiBello, 5-9, 165, Miami Palmer Trinity
Andrew Hallman, 6-2, 175, SW Ranches Archbishop McCarthy
Kaywon Hannah, 5-7, 140, Miami Booker T. Washington
Orlando Hidalgo, 5-7, 150, Miami Christopher Columbus
Bryce Holiday, QB, 6-1, 180, Hialeah
Gary LaCount, Jr., 5-11, 160, Homestead
DeAndre Miles, 6-0, 160, Miami Springs
Marcelo Rodriguez, 6-2, 170, Hollywood Chaminade-Madonna
Stanford Samuels III, 6-0, 175, Pembroke Pines Flanagan
Murphy Theodore, 5-10, 165, Miami High
Malcom Vigille, 5-9, 175, Miami Edison
Justin Worley, QB/WR, 6-0, 165,Southwest Miami

O.J. Armstrong, 5-9, 175, Miami Ransom Everglades
Jordan Atkins, RB/LB, 6-0, 190, North Miami Beach
(FB) - Jeison Banos, 5-8 195, Hialeah Miami Lakes
Garrett Blackburn, 5-10, 175, Fort Lauderdale Cardinal Gibbons
Neil Blanc, 5-7, 150, Miami Dr. Krop
Lytii Borders, 5-8, 160, Hialeah American
James Bostic, 5-10, 180, Fort Lauderdale Cardinal Gibbons
Patrick Brown, 5-9, 185, Miami Dr. Krop
Shemahr Brown, 5-9, 160, Miami Norland
Kyshaun Bryan, 5-11, 190, Plantation American Heritage
Robert Burns, RB/LB, 5-11, 200, Miami Gulliver Prep
Gage Colao, FB, 5-8, 170, Miami Christopher Columbus
Daniel Doriscar, 5-7, 155, Hialeah Mater Academy
Mike Epstein, 5-11, 180, Weston Cypress Bay
Giavante Evans, 5-9, 175, Deerfield Beach
Pedro Garcia, 5-10, 175, Miami Belen Jesuit
George Golden IV, 5-7, 170, Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas
Yael Gomez, 5-7, 170, Miami Christopher Columbus
Jason Heintskill, 5-8, 170, Plantation American Heritage
Kai Henry, 5-9, 185, Miami Edison
Zayin Henry, RB/LB, 5-8, 175, Sunrise Piper
Javis Johnson, 5-10, 170, Miami Southridge
Milan Lemon, 5-9, 160, Fort Lauderdale Cardinal Gibbons
Kahvon Lovett, 5-10, 178, South Miami
Kh'lajuwon Murat, 5-10, 170, Miami Norland
Matthew Peart, 5-11, 170, Plantation American Heritage
Robbie Robinson, 5-11, 200, Miami Booker T. Washington
Devin Saunders, 5-9, 175, Hialeah American
Dave Small, Jr., 5-9, 185, Plantation
Kywon Smith, 5-9, 190, Miami Central
Matthew Smith, RB/SS, 5-10, 175, North Miami
Jaquez Stephens, FB, 5-8, 175, Miami Norland
Bruce Un, 5-8, 155, Miami Braddock.
Michael Whyte, 5-8, 165, Miami Westminster Christian
Tajue Williams, 5-9, 170, Lauderdale Lakes Boyd Anderson
Javier Zuniga, 5-8, 160, Miami Booker T. Washington

Andre Adams, 5-8, 170, Miami Edison
Deon Asbuey, 5-8, 140, Miami Springs
Andrew Block, 5-10, 155, Miami Dr. Krop
Nick Boerner, 5-10, 140, Hollywood Chaminade-Madonna
Dontavious Butler, WR/DB, 6-1, 175, Hallandale
Edward Curry III, 6-3, 185, Hollywood Chaminade-Madonna
Jimmy Dieujuste, 5-7, 145, North Miami
Kevaughn Dingle, WR/LB, 6-2, 185, Miami Dr. Krop
Darnell Durham, 5-8, 155, Homestead South Dade
Savion Edwards, 5-8, 160, Homestead South Dade
Roddy Evans, 5-7, 155, Hialeah American
Tron Evans, 6-2, 190, Hialeah Miami Lakes
Richardson Fremond, 6-2, 170, Homestead
Kemore Gamble, 6-3, 180, Coral Gables
Ty Gamble, 5-8, 150, Homestead
Ben Garland, 5-9, 165, Miami Northwestern
Ja'Kel Gibson, 5-9, 150, Homestead
Anthony Gomez, 5-9, 170, Fort Lauderdale Cardinal Gibbons
Angelo Gonzalez, 6-2, 175, Homestead Keys Gate Charter
Joel Grant, 6-2, 170, Miami Springs
Natron Grayson, FS/WR, 6-3, 160, Miami LaSalle
Carmoni Green, 6-1, 170, Miami Booker T. Washington
Emmanuel Greene, 5-9, 150, Coconut Creek
Lorenzo Grigio, 5-7, 165, Coral Gables
Trevon Grimes, 6-3, 180, Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas.
Michael Harley, 5-10, 150, Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas.
Darnell Harrison, 5-5, 140, Hialeah American
Leroy Henley, 6-2, 175, Fort Lauderdale Cardinal Gibbons
Tyrek Hepburn, WR/QB, 5-9, 150, North Miami Beach
Zaire Jacobs, 5-10, 170, Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas.
Colson Jean, 5-10, 156, North Miami
Marco Jean, 5-10, 165, Homestead South Dade
Jerry Jeudy, 6-1, 174, Coconut Creek Monarch
Clinton Jewels, 6-3, 140, Miami Dr. Krop
Shawn Leys, 5-8, 165, Miami Christopher Columbus
Jordan Merrell, 5-10, 170, Fort Lauderdale Dillard
Anthony Mirabet, FS/WR, 5-10, 160, Miami Braddock
DeVante Mitchell, 5-9,170, Hialeah Champagnat Catholic
Laress Nelson, WR, 5-8, 175, Plantation American Heritage
Diego Ortega, 6-1, 155, Miami Belen Jesuit
Alex Ortiz, 5-10, 165, Miami Booker T. Washington
Jernard Phillips, 5-8, 160, Miami Central
Manny Pineda, 5-8, 160, Southwest Miami
Amir Rivera, 5-7, 150, Southwest Miami
Kevin Romer, 5-9, 165, Coral Gables
Rodney Scott, 6-1, 170, Miami Southridge
Matthew Solomon, 5-11, 175, Plantation American Heritage
Clevan Thomas, 5-10, 180, Miami Booker T. Washington
Anthony White, Jr., 6-0, 160, Hialeah American
Larry Williams, 6-0, 165, North Miami

Corey Stoor, TE/DE, 6-4, 215, Hialeah

Joshua Amores, 6-3, 270, Miami Springs
Sharod McBride-Brewster, 6-2, 270, Hollywood Chaminade-Madonna
Lazaro Diaz, 6-0, 250, Miami Springs
LaMorris Durden, 5-8, 300, Miami Springs
Michael Flaherty, 6-3, 280, Miami Christopher Columbus
Teaki Fuller, 6-3, 250, Miami Booker T. Washington
Corey Gaynor, OL/DL, 6-1, 220, Parkland Douglas
Harry Hannah, 6-1, 245, Miami Northwestern
Kedonis Haslem, 6-4, 285, Miami Dade Christian
Robert Hawkins, 6-5, 250, Plantation
Christopher Johnson, 6-1, 270, Miami Central
Dontavis Johnson, 6-2, 268, Homestead Barrington Christian Academy
Paul Lawless, 6-2, 210, Fort Lauderdale Cardinal Gibbons
Johnathan Llinas, 6-3, 285, Hialeah Miami Lakes
Andre Lopez, 6-4, 280, Miami Braddock
Connor MacIntyre, 6-5, 300, Plantation American Heritage
Mason Moyer, 5-10, 210, Hollywood Chaminade-Madonna
Robert Perez, 6-2, 270, Fort Lauderdale Cardinal Gibbons
Willa Pierre, 6-2, 250, Miami Booker T. Washington
Jonathan Resnick, 6-1, 240, Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas
Anthony Restrepo, 6-0, 230, Hialeah American
Jonathan Reynoso, 5-11, 230, Southwest Miami
Carlos Rodriguez, LB, 5-10, 220, Homestead
Michael Sanchez, 5-10, 210, Coral Gables
Tedarrell Slaton, 6-5, 320, Plantation American Heritage
Keanu Sullivan, 6-1, 215, Southwest Miami
Zachary Sweeney, 6-3, 240, Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas
Kyron Taylor, 6-1, 265, Homestead South Dade
Kadeem Telfort, 6-6, 310, Miami Norland
Nick Wareham, OL, 5-7, 160, Hollywood Chaminade-Madonna

Woodlyson Alcius, OL/DL, 6-4, 290, North Miami Beach
Chaz Bird, 5-11, 210, Plantation American Heritage
Jordany Bruny, 6-2, 255, Miami Dr. Krop
Thomas Chalmers, 6-1, 250, Plantation American Heritage
Rashad Colson, DE, 6-4, 230, Hialeah Miami Lakes
Martin Crue, 5-10, 225, Miami Booker T. Washington
Jaylen Daphnes, 5-10, 210, Miami Norland
George Ellis, 6-3, 300, Plantation American Heritage
Alfonzo Ervin, 5-10, 290, Hialeah Miami Lakes
Jonathon Ford, DE, 6-3, 215, Fort Lauderdale Dillard
Joel Garcia, 5-9, 195, Hialeah Miami Lakes
Antonio Gomila, 5-9, 195, Hialeah Miami Lakes
Matthew Hanson, DE, 6-2, 220, South Plantation
Chei Hill, DE, 6-0, 205, Homestead South Dade
Deandre Johnson, DE, 6-3, 220, Miami Killian
Ilan Jorge, 5-11, 225, Southwest Miami
Jake Lichenstien, DE, 6-3, 190, Weston Cypress Bay
Josh Pierre-Louis, 6-0, 225, Coral Springs Taravella
Scott Markes, DE, 6-2, 195, North Miami
Anthony Marques, 5-9, 250, Hollywood Hills
Kevin Oliver, 6-2, 220, South Plantation
Brandon Penerton, 6-0, 280, Homestead South Dade
Cameron Phillip, DE, 6-2, 205, Hollywood Chaminade-Madonna
Michael Rodriguez, DE, 6-0, 220, Miami Christopher Columbus
Sean Snyder, 5-11, 200, Fort Lauderdale Cardinal Gibbons
Demetrius Taylor, 5-10, 180, Miami Northwestern
Charles Thomas, 5-9, 190, North Miami
Guy Thomas, DE, 6-2, 200, Hialeah
Anthony Turner, 5-9, 235, Miami Booker T. Washington
Jose Valdevia, 5-11, 195, Miami Dade Christian
William Wallace, 6-0, 265, Coconut Creek Monarch
Christopher Whittaker, 6-2, 235, Hollywood Chaminade-Madonna
Deandre Wilder, DE, 5-10, 175, Miami Carol City
Jordan Wright, 6-3, 225, Fort Lauderdale Dillard
Torri Young, DL/OL, 6-1, 220, Fort Lauderdale.

Zach Applegate, 5-10, 170, Coral Springs
Matthew Bethel, LB/RB, 6-0, 180, Miami Dr. Krop
Kedar Bogle, 5-9, 160, Miami Norland
Romelo Brooks, 6-0, 205, Miami Killian
Brian Charles, 5-9, 175, North Miami
Tyler Dunning, 6-1, 215, Fort Lauderdale Dillard
Khamal Ellison, 5-10, 165, Coral Gables
Jon Falcon, 5-9, 200, Hialeah
Nadarius Fatan, 6-1, 180, Coral Gables
Aubrey Holiday, 5-11, 170, Hollywood Chaminade-Madonna
Jonathan Francois, 6-0, 210, Miami Dr. Krop
James Houston, 6-0, 195, Plantation American Heritage
Bernard Hudson, III, 6-0, 160, Homestead South Dade
Brandon James, 6-2, 180, Miami Southridge
Sammy Laster, 5-11, 180, Miami Booker T. Washington
Enos Lewis, 5-10, 175, Hialeah American
Moris Lugo, 6-0, 195, Hollywood Chaminade-Madonna
Christopher Moll, 5-10, 170, Coral Gables
Hunter Moreno, LB/FB, 6-3, 215, Miami Gulliver Prep
Travis Murray, 6-0, 210, Miami Southridge
Franklin Natta, 5-8, 170, Miami Springs
Mike Nesbitt, 6-2, 185, Fort Lauderdale Stranahan
Brandon Oliver, 6-1, 205, Sunrise Piper
Deandre Richard, 6-2, 180, North Miami
Keaundre Roberts, 5-9, 170, Miami Norland
Joseph Ruma, 5-8, 175, Cooper City
Denzel Simmons, LB/FB, 6-0, 175, SW Ranches Archbishop McCarthy
Edwin Sosa, 6-0, 180, Southwest Miami
Waynmon Steed, 6-1, 205, Miami Central
Fabian Thomas, LB, 5-10, 190, Hialeah
Isaiah Thomas, 6-1, 175, Coral Springs
Cody Watson, 5-10, 165, Hollywood Chaminade-Madonna

Joseph Weisberg, 5-9, 160, Plantation American Heritage
William Zepka, 5-10, 195, Hialeah Miami Lakes

Will Allen, 5-7, 160, Plantation American Heritage
Trajan Bandy, 5-7, 165, Miami Christopher Columbus
Renard Bozeman, 5-9, 160, Fort Lauderdale Dillard
Latavious Brini, 6-2, 170, Hialeah Gardens Mater Academy
Henry Brito, DB/WR, 5-9, 185, Hialeah
Austin Chacon, 5-11, 160, Miami Christopher Columbus
Naytron Culpepper, 6-0, 165, Hialeah American
Shawn Davis, 5-11, 170, Miami Southridge
Joshua Dinson, 5-9, 165, Hialeah American
Brian Edwards, 6-4, 175, Miramar
Nadarius Fagan, 6-1, 170, Coral Gables
Alvin Floyd, DB/WR, 5-11, 180), North Miami Beach
Billy Gibson, 6-1, 170, Hialeah Champagnat Catholic
Logan Giordano, DB/WR, 5-11, 175, SW Ranches Archbishop McCarthy
Randall Haynie, DB, 6-0, 160, Fort Lauderdale Cardinal Gibbons
Christopher Henderson, 5-10, 155, Miami Christopher Columbus
Faion Hicks, 5-10, 185, Fort Lauderdale University School
Michael Hicks, 5-10, 155, Plantation American Heritage
Nathaniel Hidalgo, DB, 6-1, 180, Hialeah
Juwan Horne, 5-9, 170, Miami Killian
Jordan Jackson, 5-10, 160, Fort Lauderdale Cardinal Gibbons
Allen Jones, 5-8, 150, Miami Central
Coemba Jones, 5-7, 160, Miami Southridge
Kevonte Lee, 5-7, 165, Miami Edison
Devonta Lopez, 5-9, 165, Hialeah Gardens Mater Academy
Anthony Machado, 5-10, 165, Miami Westminster Christian
Dedrick Mackey, 5-11, 180, Miami Booker T. Washington
De’Vante Mitchell, 5-9, 175, Hialeah Champagnat Catholic
Daniel Montoya, DB/RB, 5-9, 180, Weston Cypress Bay
Ray Moore, 5-10, 170, Miami Dade Christian
Diashun Moss, 5-10, 175, Fort Lauderdale Cardinal Gibbons
Eligah Myrthil, DB, 5-10, 165, Hialeah
Craig Nelson, 5-9, 160, Miami Booker T. Washington
Andre Pacheco, 5-6, 140, Miami Springs
Marquise Parnell, 5-9, 165, Homestead South Dade
Marqui Passmore, 5-9, 175, Homestead South Dade
Nathan Perdomo, 5-8, 155, Southwest Miami
Jalil Rankin, 5-7, 155, Miami Booker T. Washington
Vladimir Santana, 5-10, 170, Miami Braddock
Nick Sevalia, 5-9, 175, Hialeah Miami Lakes
Kaory Simmons, WR/DB, 5-11, 155, Sunrise Piper
Matthew Smith, WR, 6-0, 165, North Miami
Torrey Smith, 5-7, 155, Hialeah Miami Lakes
D.J. Terry, 6-1, 170, Miami Dade Christian
Donnelle Thomas, 5-10, 170, Hialeah American
Marco Wilson, 5-9, 165, Plantation American Heritage
Marquise Wilson, 6-0, 180, Fort Lauderdale Cardinal Gibbons
Blake Wooden, 6-0, 170, Plantation American Heritage
Daniel Wright, 5-9, 170, Fort Lauderdale Cardinal Gibbons

Marlon Alonzo, 5-8, 145, Miami Northwestern
Antonio Garcia, 5-8, 170, Southwest Miami
Zach Thompson, 5-9, 180, Plantation American Heritage

Follow Larry on Twitter at twitter.com/larryblustein.

Productive June Boosts UM's Recruiting Perception

8A Football: Monarch May Be The Biggest Surprise!

Bush, Flanagan Have Built A Quality Football Team

Columbus will rely on a more experienced team in 2014

Not Paying Attention To Miramar Would Be A Mistake!

July 08, 2014

Aquinas RB Jordan Scarlett, WR Sam Bruce plan on recruiting South Florida after committing to UM

More on the UM commitments from Jordan Scarlett and Sam Bruce that could not make Wednesday's Miami Herald:

Scarlett before his announcement Tuesday afternoon of he and Bruce: “We’re just a good 1-2 punch. This year at St. Thomas, we’re going to do some great things together because you’re going to have to respect the run, and you can’t [defend Bruce] 1-on-1.

“We’re ready to do that [at UM] and hopefully with some other Florida guys, who can take care of business.”

Added Bruce: “We’re planning on bringing the University of Miami back.”

During Bruce's radio announcement, Scarlett called in from Oregon to say, "Bruce, man, you know I love you. I’m happy we’re doing this thing together at Miami, man."

Bruce's response: “Let’s make it happen.”

Their visit to Coral Gables on June 28 and playing close to home were instrumental factors in their pledges to UM. 

“It’s in my backyard and I know all my family will be able to attend my games,” Bruce said. 

Scarlett becomes UM’s 20th member of its 2015 class, which ranks ninth in the country by 247Sports. Bruce is UM’s fifth member to the 2016 class, which already has four-star studs wide receiver Dionte Mullins, quarterback Jack Allison and linebacker Shaquille Quarterman.

Scarlett, who had previous intentions to commit to a school after his senior football season, said he and Bruce are moving their focus to getting others to join them playing close to home.

“That’s why we’re definitely doing the commitment now,” Scarlett said, “so we can get some other guys’ attention, and hopefully we can get them.”

Added Bruce: If guys from Fort Lauderdale and further south commit to the University of Miami, there’s no way we can’t win a national championship.

On top of Scarlett’s list are Monarch High School stars and Alabama commits Shawn Burgess-Becker and Calvin Ridley, whom Scarlett has known since they played optimist football together.

“We definitely want to play together at the college level,” Scarlett said. “We’ve been talking about it. They’re trying to make me go to Alabama, but they said they’ll see how the season goes.”

Scarlett, Burgess-Becker and Ridley are among 14 players from South Florida participating at The Opening. UM’s three other running back commits Jordan Cronkrite (Miami Westminster Christian), Mark Walton (Miami Booker T. Washington), and Dexter Williams (Winter Garden West Orange) are also at the event.

Scarlett said he’s had casual talks with Cronkrite on Tuesday, but “not about Miami or anything like that.”

Cronkrite told the Miami Herald on Friday he “doubts” he’d stick with his commitment to UM if Scarlett were to throw his name in UM’s 2015 recruiting class.

After Scarlett’s announcement, Cronkrite said “I’m good right now,” while hanging out with Killian safety and UM target Jaquan Johnson. Cronkrite said he didn’t really have a reaction to the news and is just going to wait things out.

Williams – who is being heavily recruited by Florida, USC, Tennessee and OhioState – told 247Sports on Tuesday his commitment to UM “is high because that's the place I want to be.” Williams also said he’s not concerned with Scarlett’s pledge adding to the Canes’ running back competition because "It's football. You're going to have a couple players there that you're going to have to beat out for the position.”

Walton told the Miami Herald on Friday: “It doesn’t matter how many running backs are committed to the University of Miami. That’s where I’m committed to. If Jordan [Scarlett] decides to commit to us, too — if all four of us go in — at the end of the day I’m still going to be a hard worker when we’re all out there.”

Scarlett, who said "It's all about the U. It's just Miami. And I love it," when asked if he had any upcoming visits to other schools in the works told the Herald he has tentative plans to visit FSU during its camp on June 16-18, and South Carolina on June 25. Scarlett said he’s visiting the other schools that missed his cut so “I won’t have to worry about it later on in the process.”

Scarlett and Bruce were heavy FSU leans at one time, but Scarlett told 247Sports on Monday he had fallen out of touch with the Seminoles’ coaching staff.

“I feel like they are not stable with communicating with the recruits,” Scarlett said. “It is something they could work on, and maybe that could change my decision later on in the process.”

National Signing Day for Scarlett and other 2015 prospects is Feb. 4. For 2016 prospects like Bruce and Mullins, add another year.

“We just made that decision together that we would commit [Tuesday], and it was just the best decision for us,” Scarlett said.

July 07, 2014

Brandon Harris “NO FLY ZONE” Youth League 7-on-7 Flag Football Camp


MIAMI - Overtown Optimist Club Presents NFL Houston Texans CB Brandon Harris “NO FLY ZONE” Youth League 7-on-7 Flag Football Camp Championship Series, taking place at City of Miami Parks & Recreation’s Gibson Park, 401 NW 12th Street, Miami, FL 33136 - Saturday July 12th and July 19th from 9:00AM-1:00PM featuring South Florida’s top youth football teams in competition.

Overtown Optimist Club Presents NFL Houston Texans CB Brandon Harris “NO FLY ZONE” Youth League 7-on-7 Flag Football Camp Championship Series will take place in the City of Miami for the 2nd year to nurture sportsmanship, competition and athletic training to the youth teams from all over South Florida. Brandon Harris “NO FLY ZONE” Youth League 7-on-7 Flag Football Camp Championship Series will feature 2 weekends of Nike SPARQ Combine Training for ALL athletes participating and a South Florida Youth League Coaching Clinic hosted by the Defending National Champion Miami Booker T. Washington F-5 Tornadoes Football Coaching Staff on July 12, 2014 at 2:00 PM at Miami Booker T. Washington Senior High School Auditorium - FREE of charge. 7-on-7 football tournament championship play will commence on July 19, 2014.

The Brandon Harris “NO FLY ZONE” Youth League 7-on-7 Flag Football Camp Championship Series will feature former South Florida standouts & NFL Celebrity Guests/Drill leaders Allen Bailey, DeMarcus VanDyke, Lavonte David, Marcus Forston, Sean Spence, Travis Benjamin, Lamar Miller and Davon Johnson. 2013 Winners included Overtown Tornadoes, Richmond Giants, Liberty City Warriors and Gwen Cherry Bulls – All played in the Sean Taylor Classic Super Bowl & 3 were Pop Warner National Champions. Free food will be provided to all participants courtesy of JC Crump.

The Brandon Harris “NO FLY ZONE” Youth League 7-on-7 Flag Football Camp Championship Series is a FREE service to the community and all participants. Event Times will be 9:00AM-1:00PM. The Tournament Championship play will be devised of 4 age groups: Seniors (15-14), Juniors (13-12), Sophomores (12-11) and Freshmen (10-9). ALL South Florida Youth Football Leagues are invited. Sponsors are Overtown Optimist Club, Brandon Harris “NO FLY ZONE”, City of Miami, Nike and JC Crump. For more information – Contact: Tim “ICE” Harris timiceharris@gmail.com or Torian Bean torianbean@gmail.com.

The Overtown Optimist Club is a cooperative agreement amongst local organizations throughout South Florida to provide summer recreational/semi-competitive level flag football for participants ages 9-15. The camp strives to create a fun environment for youth to increase their physical activity, learn sportsmanship and skills that will help those succeed in future endeavors both on and off the field.

July 06, 2014

8A Football: Monarch May Be The Biggest Surprise!

When the 2013 high school football season came to an end last November, Monarch head coach Calvin Davis never had to give that season-ending speech. His players had already looked forward to 2014.

There was a feeling for this northwest Broward program that there would be enough talent returning to make a serious run in what already looks like a competitive 8A field that features Broward schools, Miramar, Flanagan, Cypress Bay and Deerfield Beach, a few programs in Palm Beach - and five Miami-Dade schools that have a reason to believe that Orlando is a realistic destination.

"When we finished that season with a loss to Miramar, there wasn't one of the 17 returning starters on this team that didn't believe that we should be in Orlando in December of 2014," Davis said. "I think while people were fixed on the tremendous skilled athletes we had coming back, they didn't pay attention to both sides of our line and our quality linebackers."

While having University of Alabama commits Calvin Ridley (6-1, 175) and Shawn Burgess Becker (6-2, 195) back on both sides of the ball was a given, this program did have enough underclassmen from last year to believe that there was more than just two players that would spark the Knights this coming season.

On offense, the senior class featured state-rated quarterback Michael Harris (6-1, 175), Ellex "Pooh" Davis (5-9, 160) and Brandon Pope, and returning running back Cavarri Morss, a 5-9 speedster, who had a huge spring.

What this program did in the off season was add depth at running back with bruising Brayon Parrish (5-11, 180) and two-way performer Deon Thompson (5-8, 205), who also plays linebacker. Offensive lineman Roberto Montanez (6-4, 270) was also a huge key.

"I think people underestimate the balance that we have on this offense," Davis said. "We showcase that in all our classes."

The senior class on defense is also a spot many took for granted. Led by quality secondary performers Ronnie Hoggins (5-10, 170) and Antone Hodge (5-9, 175), this is a strong and athletic unit. Add in defensive end Musa Abuzahrieh (6-2, 210) and linebacker Chauncey Edwards (5-10, 205) and things get interesting.

"Our defense is very underrated," said Hoggins, who is being looked at by schools such as Wisconsin, TCU and Louisville. "We are athletic, talented and have a reason to believe we can compete with anyone."

Where the Knights figure to make the biggest impact in 2014 will be with the depth that the underclassmen provide. The junior class features defensive lineman Matt Croyle (6-2, 250), secondary performers Isaiah McIntyre (5-9, 175), Buddy Lewis (5-9, 160), Javrick Taylor (6-0, 160) and Delmedris Berry, a 5-10, 155-pounder. Offensive linemen Phillip Douglass (6-2, 270) and Joshua Varona (6-4, 260), and speedy and versatile Cavin Ridley (6-2, 195).

"The true measure of a championship team is the ability to use all the players you have on the roster," Davis said. "We have to believe that there are very few programs that have the talent in all classes that we do."

Sophomore receiver Jerry Jeudy (6-2, 175) has already received numerous college offers - defensive lineman William Wallace (6-0, 265) is an up and coming standout.

Even incoming freshmen such as defensive end Keldrick Hooks (6-4, 270) and defensive lineman Karl Paul (6-0, 260), running back
Jalen Barther (5-10, 155) and linebacker K.J. Lewis (6-0, 180) figure to add to the mix of talent.

"There is really nothing that we are going to say to programs that are the favorites to get to Orlando," said Hoggins. "The only thing we will do is go out every week and show them that we are one of the teams to beat."

We are always looking to help promote our area recruits for the current Class of 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018. All you have to do is send a You Tube or Hudl link and information about the athlete to: Larry Blustein at Floridakids1@aol.com.

Follow Larry on Twitter at twitter.com/larryblustein.

Productive June Boosts UM's Recruiting Perception

Bush, Flanagan Have Built A Quality Football Team

Columbus will rely on a more experienced team in 2014

Not Paying Attention To Miramar Would Be A Mistake!

Jordan Cronkrite updates his commitment status with the University of Miami

More of my interview with Jordan Cronkrite that could not make The Opening story in Sunday’s paper:

Cronkrite, the Miami Westminster Christian running back who committed to UM in April, said Friday he doubts he will stick with his pledge to the Hurricanes if Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas back Jordan Scarlett were to commit to UM.

Scarlett decommitted from Florida Atlantic on June 27 and lists UM, Florida State, Ohio State and South Carolina among his favorites.

“I doubt I’d probably still be with UM,” Cronkrite said. “I’d probably look somewhere else.”

Cronkrite said he spoke with the UM coaching staff before the recent dead period started to see where he stood with the Canes.

“I had a talk with the coaches about the future,” he said. “And where I stand and where we stand at the running back position and all that. It was a nice talk.”

The topics of discussion?

 “If things were to change or more people commit to the school – not certain names – but just what would happen with me and how our relationship would be, and where I’d go on their board if certain people commit.

“They told me I’m still on top of their list right now.”

Cronkrite remains committed to UM in the meantime, and will wait to see how things will unfold in the months to come.

There are multiple reports regarding Dexter Williams’ family wants the Winter Park West Orange tailback to play at the University of Florida.

And the reclassification of Miami Booker T. Washington’s Mark Walton gives UM its most solid commitment at the running back position in the Class of 2015.

Cronkrite simply would prefer not to play in a loaded backfield with Walton, Scarlett, Joseph Yearby, Gus Edwards and Walter Tucker where carries will be scarce for all parties involved.

“[I’m] not running away from competition, but just being realistic,” Cronkrite said. “They said they’re bringing in two and there’s three. There’s more time for me to be seen for the next level after college.”

Cronkrite listed West Virginia, Ohio State, South Carolina and Florida as “the main” schools in contention for his potential services. Cronkrite said he has a close relationship with a coaching staff member from each of the first three schools on that list.

Cronkrite has tentative plans to visit South Carolina and Ohio State after The Opening, which ends on Thursday. He visited West Virginia earlier this summer, and has visited UF before.

July 05, 2014

Plantation American Heritage QB Torrance Gibson gets invite to Elite 11 after all

Plantation American Heritage quarterback Torrance Gibson left for Nike World Headquarters in Beaverton, Oregon on Sunday -- a day earlier than his counterparts participating in The Opening.

Gibson -- who was invited to The Opening as an athlete and not the Elite 11 quarterback competition -- will participate in the Elite 11 after all, but not be in the running for the title crowing the country’s best high school quarterback.

Gibson will get to train and practice with the other 18 quarterbacks in the event on Sunday and Monday. He’ll move over to wide receiver when The Opening begins Tuesday and catch passes during the 7-on-7 competitions, according to Todd Huber, a personnel director for the event.

Gibson -- a five-star prospect who is deciding to attend Tennessee, Auburn, Ohio State, LSU, Oklahoma, Miami and Central Florida -- is taking his opportunity to show off his quarterback skills in stride.

“It means a lot!” Gibson said in a text message Sunday afternoon. “All I want to do is play QB and the Elite 11 is giving me the shot to play QB. It’s a humbling experience.”

***Stay tuned Saturday night for my story with the inside scoop on the three University of Miami running backs, and the Canes’ biggest target at the position, all attending The Opening.*** 

July 04, 2014

UM picks up two WR commits on Al Golden's birthday in Terrell Chatman, Dionte Mullins

Al Golden got himself two wide receivers for his 45th birthday.

The University of Miami picked up commitments Friday from Baton Rouge (Louisiana) Central’s Terrell Chatman and Gulliver Prep’s Dionte Mullins after both raved about their recent visits to the school.

Chatman visited UM on June 27, and came away impressed with offensive coordinator James Coley and wide receiver coach/recruiting coordinator Brennan Carroll, and the school’s campus. Chatman (6-3, 180) is rated a three-star prospect by 247Sports.

“They sent a clear message that they wanted me," Chatman said to the New Orleans Times-Picayune. "When I went down there it was everything I expected. I was surprised how small the campus was, but I really liked that. It's always been a school that I really liked.

Mullins, a 2016 freak of an athlete underrated with four stars by 247Sports, and his mother visited UM a day after Chatman, and came away wowed after their meeting with Coley, Carroll and Golden.

“It was a great meeting with had together – like a family meeting,” Mullins said Sunday during the Nike Football Festival event at Ransom Everglades High. “I felt like I was home.”

Playing close to home, family and friends were also an overwhelming factor for Mullins, who said the UM coaches made an impact keeping a focus on academics -- while football was the main topic of discussion, of course.

“They said I’d be a great weapon they can use,” said Mullins, who had more than 15 offers from schools around the country including Florida State and Alabama. “I kept that in mind a lot.”

Mullins may have also been leaning more towards UM after the coaching staff hired Gulliver offensive coordinator Jorge Baez to be its new assistant director of player personnel on Monday.

Baez, who was coaching the Gulliver Prep team on Sunday during its 7-on-7 tournament, said through a text message he took the UM job because “it was a great opportunity for me and my family.

Baez has had previous coaching experiences at the college level as the wide receivers coach at Southern University (Louisiana) and a quality control assistant at Ole Miss.

“After talking with Coach Golden and seeing how many changes he has done to the football facilities and the level of commitment the university has made to improve the program, it was a blessing to receive this opportunity,” Baez said.

Chatman becomes the 19th prospect to join UM’s 2015 class. On Thursday, UM picked up its 18th commitment in the 2015 class with Fort Lauderdale Cardinal Gibbons defensive end Richard McIntosh.

Mullins becomes the fourth recruit in UM’s 2016 recruiting class, which could add Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas receiver Sam Bruce to its list on Tuesday. Bruce is choosing between UM, FSU and Ohio State.

“It’s just a great opportunity to be in this situation right now,” Mullins said. 

June 28, 2014

Productive June Boosts UM's Recruiting Perception

For those who have long poked holes in the University of Miami’s recruiting strategy under coach Al Golden, it may be wise to take a few steps back and see what was accomplished this June in Coral Gables.

Less than a year after coming off NCAA probation, the Hurricanes geared up to make this June one of the most special ones since Golden and his staff arrived. Five one day camps on campus that attracted not only stellar athletes from throughout the state and country, but also helped this program make a statement that south Florida would once again be a priority.

With last weekend’s 1,000 campers in two days, the five camps brought in over 2,500 athletes who spent six hours learning from coaches, present and former players and local high school coaches – as well as college coaches from schools such as Appalachian State, Temple and dozens of programs throughout the country.

In addition to the on campus events, the University of Miami’s successful “Deserve Victory Tour” helped to stake a claim in Miami-Dade and Broward Counties – with visits to local parks such as Lauderdale Lakes, Betty Ferguson in Miami Gardens, Gibson Park in Overtown and Richmond Park in Perrine, bringing in another 2,000 athletes.

With former players and current high school coaches such as Roland Smith (Miami Central), Earl Little (Miami Jackson) and several local coaches who brought players in record numbers, this was indeed a season that not only got the prospects on to campus, but netted several commitments along the way.

“When you can get top prospects on your campus and showcase your coaching staff, it’s huge for the program,” said Smith, who starred at the school and now runs one of the most successful programs in the country. “The chance for some of these top athletes to see current players is a big thing.”

At a time when the school is moving forward after the probation and bowl sanctions, this June was vital to bring top flight prospects onto campus, and form players such as Miami Booker T. Washington receiver Antonio Callaway, it was a chance to showcase his skills against some of the best defensive backs around.

“This was a great camp for me to attend,” Callaway pointed out. “I had the chance to learn a lot and run patterns against defensive backs that have offers from schools across the country.”

This June saw the Hurricanes attract major names to Coral Gables. Rising seniors such as Palm Beach Gardens linebacker Tevon Coney, Palm Beach Lakes’ defensive back Maxwell Howell, Deerfield Beach defensive end Jason Strowbridge, Coral Gables receiver Shaquery Wilson, Miami Westminster Christian standouts Jordan Cronkite and Tim Irvin, Miami Northwestern corner DeAndre Baker, South Plantation safety Rod Archer, Norland defensive back Antonio Howard, Braddock receiver Chris Linares, Miami Jackson defensive back Tovias Parker, Miami Central defensive lineman Fermin Silva, Cardinal Gibbons defensive lineman Richard McIntosh and Hallandale defensive end Dana Levine – to name a few.

Even when some of the athletes didn’t work out at the camp, they still took the time to come with their parents and coaches to check out the program and campus. That was something that hadn’t happened in the past.

“I have been watching the recruiting here at this school for decades,” Dana Wiley of Prep Films pointed out. “I would have to say that this June was perhaps the most active in the past five years. This school finally got off probation and now was on that even playing field with the rest of the programs.”

What Golden and his staff wanted out of this June was to put their best foot forward. The growth of the campus is evident at every turn. New building are popping up in every corner, and the football facilities – once viewed as archaic – have been elevated in a major way.

For Class of 2017 quarterback Toddy Centeio of Royal Palm Beach, the opportunity to come to the camp and work with some of the top quarterback coaches, the visit was well worth it. He came with his father and some teammates who took the tour of the campus during the visit.

“This is a great place,” Centeio pointed out. “Plenty of history here and a great future as well.”

Underclassmen really made this June special. Class of 2016 prospects such as Miami High’s Keyshawn “Pie” Young, Champagnat Catholic receiver Darnell Salomon, Hallandale quarterback Tyler Huntley, Dillard defensive lineman Aaron Thompson – as well as Cardinal Gibbons standouts Elisha Daniels, Elijah Daniels and nationally recruited running Deon McIntosh all took part as well.

In addition to Centeio, Cardinal Gibbons’ defensive back Daniel Wright, the brother of former St. Thomas Aquinas and current NFL safety Major Wright and receiver Leroy Henley came out. So did Miramar receiver Lavarus Tigner.

The camp also attracted out of area prospects such as quarterback Jack Allison (Palmetto), lineman Geron Christian (Ocala Trinity), Christian Pellage (Brooksville Nature Coast), Tallahassee Godby lineman Brendan Loftus and Scott Patchan from Tampa Freedom.

We are always looking to help promote our area recruits for the current Class of 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018. All you have to do is send a You Tube or Hudl link and information about the athlete to: Larry Blustein at Floridakids1@aol.com.

Follow Larry on Twitter at twitter.com/larryblustein.

Bush, Flanagan Have Built A Quality Football Team

Columbus will rely on a more experienced team in 2014

Not Paying Attention To Miramar Would Be A Mistake!