November 10, 2014

17th Annual Miami-Dade North vs. South All-Star Football Game to be held on Dec. 20

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MIAMI - It's simply an event like no other held in the country.

The most prestigious areas in the country, the hotbed for high school football talent, will once again shine in the spotlight as the 17th edition of the Tournament of Champions Miami-Dade All-Star Football Game will take place on Saturday, Dec. 20th at Curtis Park (1901 NW 24th Avenue) in Miami.

The game, which had long featured the best of Miami-Dade and Broward - and most recently - other athletes from southeast and southwest Florida - has returned to its roots this year with a showdown between the best of 305 - when the lines are drawn and the county is split into North and South.

"This is high school football at its very finest," said game founder and organizer Wesley Frater. "Look on any NFL roster or watch a collegiate game on Saturdays and you will find that Miami-Dade County, the 305 area code is well represented."

This year game, which will feature coaches from Coral Gables on the South team - and a combined effort between defending national champion Booker T. Washington and Carol City on the North squad will roll out some of the finest players in the country.

Among the players representing the South squad include Syracuse University commit Doyle Grimes (South Dade), Temple-bound standout Jotae Barrett (Homestead), Wisconsin commit Dominic Sheppard (Gulliver Prep) and USF commit Trevon Sands (Southwest Miami) among other quality prospects.

The North team is also well stocked with quality football talent such as FIU commits in quarterback commit Maurice Alexander and defensive back Ocie Rose (Booker T. Washington), UAB running back commitment Michael Frederick (Champagnat Catholic). Ohio State defensive back commit Carlton Davis (Norland) and Kentucky bound defensive back Jeremiah Dinson (American) as well as other high level recruits.

"The players in this game are among the elite in the country," said longtime talent evaluator Larry Blustein. "The players in south Florida may be headed to other games across the country and locally, but this is one that they want to take part in. This is certainly for pride and prestige."
 

The kickoff is slated for 7 p.m. and tickets are Student Tickets are $12 for ADULTS and $10.75 for STUDENTS with ID. For information, call 305-910-9019 or visit Bleechr.com.

ELITE UNDERCLASS COMBINE TO BE HELD EARLIER IN THE DAY
In addition the North vs. South All-Star event, the day will start off with a prestigious underclassmen combine that will feature some of the best up-and-coming football prospects the entire south Florida region has to offer.

The combine will be the first forum of the off season to get rising seniors, juniors and sophomores into the spotlight. Every player that attends will be listed and promoted along with player evaluations and videos that they have had from this past year.

"This is a chance for many underclassmen in Miami-Dade, Broward, Monroe, Collier and Palm Beach to come down and get on the map," said Larry Blustein. "We promoted over 4,500 players this year and the college response was overwhelming, so any player attending this event will get out there for all to see and start the ball rolling for the upcoming season."

The combine is just $45 - which is a small price to pay to get on the map and learn some football techniques from coaches who know what it takes to get to that next level.

For information, call 305-910-9019. http://www.bleechr.com/305.

TOC 305 SOUTH ALL STAR ROSTER
QUARTERBACKS
P.J. Coats, 6-2, 220, South Dade
Jowan Watson, 6-0, 195, Gulliver Prep
Deundre Pickett-White, 6-0, 190, Southwest Miami

RUNNING BACKS
Wade Collier, 5-8, 180, Homestead
Johnnie Hankins, 5-10, 195, South Dade
Hans Supre, 5-8, 170, Coral Gables

RECEIVERS
Frank Battle, 6-4, 200, Belen Jesuit
Raymond Gage, 5-10, 170, Keys Gate Charter
Chris Linares, 6-0, 175, Braddock
Austin Maloney, 5-11, 175, Christopher Columbus
Anthony Olivencia, 6-2, 190, Killian
Shaquery Wilson, 6-3, 190, Coral Gables

TIGHT END
Andres Saldivar, 6-2, 210, Coral Gables

OFFENSIVE LINEMEN
Jose Garcia, 6-2, 280, Killian
Alex Helms, 6-5, 310, Westminster Christian
DeAndre McCrae, 6-4, 280, Southridge
Andy Moreira, 6-1, 270, Coral Gables
Jake Perez, 5-11, 210, Southwest Miami
Jake  Rodriguez, 6-6, 320, Belen Jesuit
Jason Rodriguez, 6-1, 265, Christopher Columbus

DEFENSIVE LINEMEN
DE - Shawn Curtis, 6-3, 240, Reagan
Dhany Dye, 6-3, 345, Coral Gables
DE -  Kenneth Herring, 6-2, 220, Coral Gables
DE - Damien Horton, 6-3, 215, Killian
Jarred McGhee, 6-0, 265, Coral Gables
DE - Eric Santil, 6-2, 190, Homestead
Joe Suarez, 6-3, 230, South Dade
Marcus Stevenson, Southridge

LINEBACKERS
James Bowe, 6-2, 190, Killian
Rashad Broadway, 5-10, 200, Westminster Christian
Bruce Davis, 6-1, 195, Killian
Doyle Grimes, 6-2, 200, South Dade
Dominic Sheppard, 6-2, 225, Gulliver Prep
Jontavis Testa, 6-0, 205, Coral Gables

DEFENSIVE BACKS
Jhovante Dean, 6-1, 170, South Dade
S - Terill Hanks, 6-2, 200, LaSalle
Tobias Moss, 5-10, 170, Westminster Christian
Sheldrick Redwine, 6-1, 190, Killian
S - Elijah Reed, 6-4, 195, South Miami
S - Anthony Sotolongo, 6-1, 195, Gulliver Prep
Andrew Spence, 6-2, 180, Coral Gables
S - Tadarius Wilson, 5-10, 170, South Dade

ATHLETES
Jimmy Armstrong, 5-9, 170, Westminster Christian
Jonte Barrett, 5-8, 160, Homestead
Tucker Beirne, 6-2, 225, Christopher Columbus
Jordan Cronkite, 5-11, 195, Westminster Christian
Emilio Gibbs, 6-0, 230, Coral Gables
Tim Irvin, 5-9, 185, Westminster Christian
Jaquan Johnson, 5-11, 190, Killian
Trevon Sands, 5-10, 180, Southwest Miami

SPECIALIST
Uriel Hernandez, 5-6, 180, Homestead

TOC 305 NORTH ALL STAR ROSTER
QUARTERBACKS
Maurice Alexander, 6-0, 180, Booker T. Washington
Gerald Anderson, 5-11, 200, Miami Springs
Hilton Joseph, 5-11, 165, North Miami

RUNNING BACKS
Markel Anderson, 5-9, 180, Miami Beach
Ronneldon Ellington, 5-10, 180, Carol City
Michael Frederick, 5-10, 185, Champagnat
Cedric Miller, 5-10, 180, Central
Mark Walton, 5-11, 190, Booker T. Washington

RECEIVERS
Steven Claude, 6-2, 190, Champagnat
Tavaris Harrison, 6-3, 190, North Miami
Anthony Jones, 5-11, 195, Central
Johnny Rembert, 5-10, 175, Miami Springs
Victor Sam, 6-0, 185, North Miami
Vaquan Small, 6-2, 180, Booker T. Washington

OFFENSIVE LINEMEN
Marquise Barnes, 6-5, 300, Hialeah Miami Lakes
Samuel Dervil, 6-4, 275, Northwestern
William Gordon, 6-3, 300, Norland
Jason Jean, 6-4, 290, Central
Deiontae Lynch, 6-2, 270, Booker T. Washington
Sylvester Robzel, 6-3, 320, Central
Michael Sawyer, 6-1, 280, Carol City
Christian Strachan, 6-4, 315, Champagnat Catholic
Ben Tirolia, 6-3, 300, Booker T. Washington
Clayton Cobb, 6-1, 280, Booker T. Washington

DEFENSIVE LINEMEN
Keivonnis Davis, 6-4, 235, Central
DE - Andre Duncombe, 6-1, 190, Booker T. Washington
DE - Rodrick Golden, 5-11, 215, Mater Academy
DE - Irick McDonald, 6-5, 215, Miami Springs
Jay Ortiz, 6-3, 255, Mater Academy
DE - Dwayne Paddyfoot, 6-3, 215, Mater Academy
Fermin Silva, 6-2, 225, Central

LINEBACKERS
James Bell, 5-9, 190, North Miami
Marquis Couch, 6-1, 225, Central
Rayshad Jackson, 6-1, 215, Norland
James King, 6-1, 200, Booker T. Washington
Tyrone Robinson, 6-0, 210, Booker T. Washington

DEFENSIVE BACKS

S - Xavier Bailey, 5-11, 175, Northwestern
Olin Cushion III, 5-10, 170, Central
S - Carlton Davis, 6-2, 180, Norland
Davante Davis, 6-2, 200, Booker T. Washington

Jeremiah Dinson, 6-0, 180, American
Rashad Fenton, 6-1, 190, Carol City
Karon Jackson, 5-9, 170, American
S - Terry Jefferson, 5-10, 170, Booker T. Washington
S - Robert Knowles, 6-0, 180, Edison

S - Khalid McGee, 6-0, 180, Northwestern

S - Ocie Rose, 6-2, 190, Booker T. Washington

SPECIALIST

Baymar Piraquvie, 6-0, 175, Central

ATHLETES
Shaquille Green, 5-8, 160, Booker T. Washington
Tovias Parker, 5-11, 170, Jackson
Cedric Wiggins, 6-1, 190, North Miami Beach

November 07, 2014

'Humble' Calvin Brewton accepts Army All-American jersey, remains solid to Florida State

Calvin Brewton easily posed for at least 100 pictures with family and friends in the Miami Central auditorium after his U.S. Army All-American jersey presentation on Friday.

Central coach Roland Smith even dubbed it Calvin Brewton day at the school.

Brewton, the modest Central senior safety and Florida State commit, will play in one of the nation’s premier high school football all-star games on Jan. 3, 2015. And while all the attention was something Brewton took in stride, it was also well deserved.

“It’s a celebration,” Brewton said. It means so much to me, my family and also the school because I’m the school’s first U.S. Army All-American.

“It’s like I made history today.”

More than 20 family members and players on the Central football team gathered for Brewton, a quiet kid who’s been respectful and receptive to everyone he encounters.

“Calvin is a very humble kid. And with all of his God-given talents, he’s never looked down on nobody or thought he was bigger than [anyone else],” Miami Central principal Gregory Bethune said. “That draws people to him. He’s an outstanding kid.”

Since his pledge to FSU in January, Brewton has remained a firm commit despite hearing from Louisville and Notre Dame. He plans on majoring in business when he gets to FSU.

“He loves Florida State,” Brewton’s mother Calneitha Miller said unequivocally after the ceremony. “He’s been determined on where he wants to go.”

Da’vante Phillips update: Phillips says Miami has been coming on strong, sending him messages every day in an attempt to get him to stay in South Florida, but Florida State still remains as his top school. Phillips, who plans on graduating in December, plans to announce his commitment to a school towards the end of December/beginning of January. Phillips will participate in the Under Armour All-America game on Jan. 2, 2015 in St. Petersburg.

Florida State commit Sh'Mar Kilby Lane becomes Hallandale's first Army All-American

Life came full circle for Hallandale coach Dameon Jones and the parents of star linebacker Sh’Mar Kilby-Lane on Wednesday.

Kilby-Lane was honored at his school as a U.S. Army All-American, the first Army All-American in Hallandale’s history while the Chargers are in the midst of their winningest football season to date.

The event was something Jones, Kilby-Lane’s step father Omar Brown and mother Shanette Kilby could not fathom when they were students roaming the halls at Hallandale. Jones and Brown played on the Hallandale football team during their time at the school. Kilby, on the other hand, was pregnant with her son.

“It means a lot to me. It really does,” Kilby said. “I put my dreams on hold so that he could have better and do better. So it means the world to me.”

Kilby had aspirations to study mortuary science in college, but opted to provide for her son instead. Now Kilby-Lane is currently committed to attend and play football at Florida State University if he signs with the Seminoles on National Signing Day in February.

“I’ve been through a lot with Sh’Mar, just keeping focused and staying on track,” Kilby said. “I always known he was something special on the football field.”

Going to Hallandale was in the cards for Kilby-Lane, who has helped Hallandale (9-0) to the school’s first district title and undefeated regular season.

“This honor means everything to me,” Kilby-Lane said. “I feel very excited. I just don’t show it that much. But I feel very excited.”

Kilby-Lane’s jersey presentation and Hallandale’s recent success have been “a beautiful thing to see” for Brown, who used to play quarterback.

“Sh’mar actually thought I was a bench rider until he actually got here and Coach Jones really let him know what I did,” Brown said with a laugh. “Sh’Mar is a great kid. I’ve been with him since he was 7 so just to watch him come from that to here is a moment you really can’t explain.”

Irvin, Rumph named as coaches in the 2015 U.S. Army All-American Bowl

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ROCKAWAY, N.J. – The U.S. Army All-American Bowl is proud to announce the coaching staff for the 2015 U.S. Army All-American Bowl. Coach Gabe Infante of St. Joseph’s Preparatory School (Philadelphia, Pa.) and Scott Altenberg of Junipero Serra High School (Gardena, Calif.) have been selected to coach the East and West squads, respectively, in the 2015 U.S. Army All-American Bowl. Infante and Altenberg will lead their all-star teams consisting of the top high school talent from across the nation on the field Saturday, Jan. 3, 2015, at 1 p.m. EST at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas.

Assistant coaches Sedric Irvin from Miami Westminster Christian and Mike Rumph from defending 5A state champion Plantation American Heritage, have been added to the East staff as assistant coaches.

Coach Gabe Infante Highlights (East):
Infante has been the head football coach at St. Joseph’s Prep since 2010, compiling a record of 37-18 and winning the 2013 Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association (PIAA) AAAA Championship while also capturing the Catholic League and District 12 City Championships. The 2013 team finished in the top 40 nationally and No. 1 in Pennsylvania. Infante earned Coach of the Year honors for his efforts, and entering into 2014, Prep was ranked in the top 20 in the nation and No. 1 in Pennsylvania.

"I am honored to be selected to represent our school and community in the 2015 U.S. Army All-American Bowl and to be a part of the incredible tradition the game has established," said Infante.

Coach Scott Altenberg Highlights (West):
Altenberg has 16 seasons under his belt as head coach at Junipero Serra and has seen many alumni go on to success at the collegiate level. Altenberg is responsible for the development of three Southern Cal wide receivers: George Farmer, Robert Woods and Marqise Lee. Altenberg really has the Cavalier program humming, winning CIF-Southern Section State Championships in 2009, 2010 and 2012. He was honored as CIF-Southern Section Coach of the Year after a 14-1 2010 season.

“It is one of the greatest honors of my coaching career to be named the West head coach of the U.S Army All-American Bowl,” said Altenberg. “I believe the game represents everything that is great about high school football – young men at the top of their game, competing against each other, while honoring the great men and women who fight to protect our country. It's an awesome event and I'm ecstatic to be a part of it.”

The U.S. Army All-American Bowl is also proud to announce the assistant coaches for the 2015 U.S. Army All-American Bowl.

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The following are the coaching staffs for the 2015 U.S. Army All-American Bowl (listed alphabetically with the head coach listed first):
2015 East Coaches:
Gabe Infante, St. Joseph’s Preparatory School, Philadelphia, PA.
Kyle Hockman, McEachern High School, Powder Springs, GA.
Sedrick Irvin, Miami Westminster Christian School, Palmetto Bay, FL.
Tim Roken, St. Joseph’s Preparatory School, Philadelphia, PA.
Mike Rumph, American Heritage School, Plantation, FL.
Steve Specht, St. Xavier High School, Cincinnati, OH.
Bob Sphire, North Gwinnett High School, Suwanee, GA.
Ryan Sulkowski, Coffee County Central High School, Manchester, TN.

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2015 West Coaches:
Scott Altenberg, Junipero Serra High School, Gardena, CA.
David Beaudin, Saint Mary’s Hall, San Antonio, TX.
Josh Dabbs, Junipero Serra High School, Gardena, CA.
Mike Kirschner, Ben Davis High School, Indianapolis, IN.
Mark Smith, James Madison High School, San Antonio, TX.
Kevin Stilling, Wood River High School, Hailey, ID.
Gary Swenson, Valley High School, West Des Moines, IA.
Jeremy Thielbahr, Eastside Catholic High School, Sammamish, WA.

“Coaches play an important role in the positive development of America’s youth,” said Mark S. Davis, deputy assistant secretary of the Army for marketing. “The coaches and assistant coaches chosen for the U.S. Army All-American Bowl are highly accomplished and respected leaders, who like our Army Soldiers, base their leadership on a set of core values. We are proud to honor all of the U.S. Army All-American Bowl coaches and congratulate each of them on their selection.”

For more than 14 years, the U.S. Army All-American Bowl has been the nation’s premier high school football game, serving as the preeminent launching pad for America’s future college and NFL stars. Andrew Luck, Patrick Peterson and Jamaal Charles made their national debuts as U.S. Army All-Americans. In the 2014 NFL Draft, there were a total of seven U.S. Army All-American Bowl Alumni drafted in the first round. The 2014 U.S. Army All-American Bowl drew a crowd of 40,017 to the Alamodome and was the most-watched sporting event on television over the weekend, excluding the NFL playoffs.

The U.S. Army All-American Bowl is owned and produced by All American Games, a New Jersey-based sports marketing and event management company. The U.S. Army is the title sponsor of the U.S. Army All-American Bowl, and American Family Insurance is the lead national sponsor and presenting sponsor of the telecast on NBC. Other national sponsors include American Family Insurance, adidas, NBC, Gatorade, San Antonio Visitors Bureau, 247Sports, XOS Digital, NCSA, Lockheed Martin, Xenith, Battle Sports Science, Eastbay, EvoShield, 23 Blast Movie, NewTek and Football University. National sponsors of the U.S. Army All-American Marching Band include the National Association for Music Education, Drum Corps International, Jupiter Wind Instruments, Mapex Marching Percussion, Majestic Concert Percussion and DeMoulin Uniforms.

For more information on the U.S. Army All-American Bowl and its related events visit usarmyallamericanbowl.com and goarmy.com/events/aab or the official Facebook and Twitter pages located at facebook.com/USArmyAllAmericanBowl, facebook.com/USAAAMB and twitter.com/armyallamerican.

November 04, 2014

Jordan Scarlett reaffirms his commitment to Miami, clears Florida State rumors

Jordan Scarlett had one message for University of Miami football fans after visiting Florida State last month.

After the Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas running back and UM commit accepted his U.S. Army All-American Bowl jersey on Tuesday, Scarlett said his recruitment is “kind of closed up.”

“Miami is just the school I’ve been always thinking about,” Scarlett said. “I committed there for a reason and I’ve heard plenty of rumors saying I’m leaving for FSU.

“I just had to let everybody know that’s not the case, and I hope my message was brought across very firmly.”

UM’s message to Scarlett has been clear-cut: The team sees him filling the role junior running back Duke Johnson has played over the last three seasons if/when Johnson opts to enter the NFL Draft.

“I’ll be that guy there,” said Scarlett, who committed to UM in July. “I’ll be the man on campus. All I got to do is just come there, stay focused and do what I’m doing [at Aquinas]. It should be a smooth transition.”

Scarlett visited FSU for the Notre Dame game on Oct. 18, and is currently third on the Seminoles Class of 2015 wish list at the running back position behind FSU commits Johnny Frasier (from Princeton, North Carolina) and Jacques Patrick (Orlando). On Oct. 29, 247Sports reported Frasier’s commitment “is still pretty strong” but he is still keeping in contact with Tennessee, N.C. State, South Carolina and Duke.

“[The FSU coaches] try to reach out to me every now and then,” Scarlett said, “but I just tell them that I’m committed [to UM] right now.”

Scarlett says he plans to take his official visit to UM after his senior season. He has no plans to take any other visits at this time.

In the meantime, Scarlett is relishing the relationships he’s developed with UM coach Al Golden, offensive coordinator James Coley, running backs coach Tim “Ice” Harris, and UM assistant director of football operations Kevin Beard –- Scarlett’s former offensive coordinator when they were at Davie University School.

“I love the coaches there,” Scarlett said. “I don’t see why I wouldn’t want to go there. It’s a great atmosphere, and I just always wanted to be a Cane.”

Torrance Gibson, mother share emotional moment before his commitment to Ohio State

An exciting day began as a somber one for Torrance Gibson at Plantation American Heritage on Monday.

About an hour before announcing his commitment to Ohio State, Gibson accepted his U.S. Army All-American Bowl invitation alongside teammate Tarvarus McFadden and thanked many in attendance for their support along the way, including his mother Joann Seymour and a Heritage staffer who “saved his life” by allowing him to attend the school.

Gibson -- the youngest of six children -- stayed composed thanking his single parent, who currently works at Heritage as a teaching assistant, for helping him endure a trying senior year, which has included three Heritage losses this season and the biggest decision of Gibson’s life hanging overhead.

When Gibson moved away from the podium to hug Seymour afterwards, the tears started to flow for both mother and son.

“Just being a single parent with six kids,” Gibson said afterwards, “I’m the last one.

“That’s why I wear No. 6. I’m the last one.

“This moment was a very special moment. I’ll never forget this moment and this day.

“She’s been working so hard at this school. Sometimes I just cry myself to sleep. I just go in my room, and I look the door. And I just want to be alone. And I just think about her and all that she has done for me. It hurts sometimes because you don’t have that father figure in your life, and it hurts seeing my mom like that.”

After the tears, Gibson’s mother was all smiles especially during her son’s announcement to play for Urban Meyer and the Buckeyes.

“To see my baby boy growing into a young man right now,” Seymour said. “That was kind of emotional for me.”

Gibson and McFadden, a five-star cornerback who committed to Florida State on Friday will play alongside each other for the last time in one of the most prestigious high school all-star football games in the country, held in San Antonio on Jan. 3, 2015. Last year, Heritage star running back Sony Michel played in the game.

October 16, 2014

Dolphins Honor Youth, High School Players, Coaches

Every home game this year, the Miami Dolphins recognize the top players, coaches and teams in youth and high school football throughout south Florida.

For the game against the Green Bay Packers, the Palm Beach Gardens William T. Dwyer High School football team ran out of the tunnel in pink jerseys in support of Breast Cancer Awareness month at Sun Life Stadium. The high school is one of the only teams in the area that has pink jerseys that represent breast cancer awareness, and the team in the past has honored survivors by wearing pink jerseys.

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For the game against the Packers, Amari Daniels of the Miami Gardens Vikings (11 years old) in the Florida Youth Football League was honored on the field by the Miami Dolphins as the Youth Player of the Week presented by Under Armour. Daniels is coached by his father, Scott Daniels. He is joined by Troy Drayton of the Miami Dolphins.

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Wide receiver Ellex "Pooh" Davis of Monarch High School was honored as Miami Dolphins High School Player of the Week presented by Under Armour. Davis is coached by Calvin Davis. He is joined by Troy Drayton of the Miami Dolphins.

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Jack Daniels of William T. Dwyer High School was honored on the field by the Miami Dolphins as the High School Coach of the Week.

Photos By The Miami Dolphins.

October 03, 2014

Miami Central's Da'Vante Phillips has tentative plans to visit Alabama, Auburn, Ohio State

By David FuronesSpecial to the Miami Herald

The recruiting picture for Miami Central four-star senior wide receiver Da’Vante Phillips is becoming a bit clearer.

Phillips, who had a pair of touchdown catches in Central’s 49-0 rout of Homestead on Thursday, said he has plans on taking official visits to Alabama, Auburn and Ohio State.

Phillips (6-1, 189) has plans on graduating early and enrolling in school in January after playing in the Under Armour All-America game on Jan. 2, 2015 at Tropicana Field in Tampa.

On Alabama, Phillips said, “I’ve never been there, but I know [offensive line coach Mario] Cristobal wants me there a lot.”

On Ohio State: “[Wide receivers coach Zach Smith], he came down here and he told me he would love for me to come see how it is so I could adapt to it and see what I like.”

About Auburn: “I went up there in the spring. I liked it. I loved the dorms. I just loved everything about it. I really like Auburn.”

Phillips said Clemson, Florida State, Miami and Oklahoma are all options for his last two official visits.

Of the in-state schools from that group, Phillips has teammates from Central’s back-to-back Class 6A state championship team recruiting him to each school — Dalvin Cook at FSU, and Joseph Yearby and Trevor Darling with the Hurricanes.

“Dalvin Cook is trying to get me all the time because that’s my bro,” said Phillips, who lives with Cook’s grandmother. “UM, I don’t really know about it yet because I don’t know if I’m staying in Miami or not.”

 

October 02, 2014

Tarvarus McFadden to decide between Georgia, Florida State, LSU on Oct. 31

Plantation American Heritage cornerback Tarvarus McFadden is down to three schools and will make a final decision on Oct. 31, he said Thursday.

Georgia, Florida State and LSU are in the race for McFadden, a 6-3, 200-pound prospect rated five stars by several recruiting services.

McFadden visited Georgia for the Bulldogs' season opener on Aug. 30 against Clemson, and has tentative plans to visit FSU for the Notre Dame game on Oct. 18, but "I'm not sure yet, though."

"After that [visit to FSU], I'll pretty much know," McFadden said of the thought process on his decision. McFadden said if he takes any other visits, it will be after his commitment to one of the three schools.

McFadden is close friends with former Heritage teammates and UGA freshman Sony Michel and Isaiah McKenzie, who have both seen their fair share of action this season.

On reuniting with Michel and McKenzie, McFadden said, "It's a strong possibility, but everybody is just going to have to wait and see."

October 01, 2014

10 Players That Are Off To Fast Starts in 2014

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As we head toward the halfway point of the 2014 high school football season, many of the standout football players who were predicted to have great seasons, are off to a fast start.

In an area of the country that annually produces nearly 200 FBS level prospects, there are always going to be those who are overlooked - for one reason or another. Athletes who may have been injured last year or during the spring - or perhaps are underclassmen who may have matured over the past eight months.

Talk to any college coach who has spent time in Miami-Dade and Broward Counties and all will agree that borderline prospects a year ago - or as recently as the spring - could be overlooked by schools who haven't had the chance to watch, evaluate and offer these talented players since May - which is four months ago.

"Four months is a long time for an athlete to grow and become a major prospect," said Miami Central head coach Roland Smith. "We have a few players on our team who have matured a great deal in the months since spring, so I can understand how many of the players are overlooked."

While there are  several football players who haven't received the attention from colleges - with dozens of offers waiting in the balance -  there are a core group of prospects who have jumped out over the past four months - and for the most part - colleges have not jumped on them, the way they should be.

Here are 10 very hot football players who should have 10-plus offers by now, but because they may not have been viewed at the right time, are flying way beneath the radar screen:
   

Xavier Bailey, DB, 6-0, 180, Miami Northwestern: Starting out at Miami Beach, then moving to Jackson, this is a big time defensive back/special teams player who has found a home with the Bulls. Just as recent as the first district game against Carol City, he made a solid impact with his speed and athletic ability, faking a punt and sprinting for a TD and receiving a fumble.

Shawn Curtis, LB/RB, 6-2, 230, Doral Ronald Reagan: A huge treason that the Bisons have been a force the past two years, this is a total package who can play on both sides of the ball, has plenty of size and athletic ability and gets it done in the classroom. This is a player that should have schools banging down the door.

Dusan Etienne, OL, 6-7, 300, Hollywood Hills: Nobody has watched his career take off more than this giant of a lineman over the past three months. Winning the MVP of an Ocala Lineman Challenge that was run by former NFL linemen, this impressive prospect when from another two-way line prospects to one of the elite in the state - and has continued to back it for the Spartans this season.
 

Jhakari Harrison, QB, 5-11, 170, Coconut Creek: Easily one of the most underrated of the quarterbacks in the Class of 2016, this three-year starter routinely throws for over 250 yards and has proven that he belongs in the conversation with the best juniors in the state. A very accurate passer who has the skills and athletic ability to get better over the next few years. You can guarantee that during the next evaluation period, his stock will soar.

Brett Israel, QB, 6-0, 170, Douglas: Another versatile run/pass quarterback prospect who has been overlooked. Losing most of his linemen and receivers from a year ago, he has guided the Eagles to a surprising start, including an upset over  last year's district champion Deerfield Beach. A very accurate passer who also runs the ball very well. Another talent who will watch his stock rise as colleges watch his film and see him in person.
  

Joe Riggins, LB/S, 6-2, 205, Cardinal Gibbons: With a few offers on the table, this linebacker/safety prospect has been playing at a high level for two years - and while colleges have noticed - he is indeed flying way beneath the radar this season. One of the hardest hitters and instinctive players you will find. Has a nose for ball as you will see by watching him play. He is always around the ball, and has the endorsement from his coaches, teammates and the opposition.

Ivan Smith, RB, 5-11, 170, Miami Christopher Columbus: Make no mistake that this is the next outstanding runner in south Florida. A very elusive player who started to show signs last year, but has really made a difference this season with his speed and instinctive running. As he gets stronger and gains more weight, colleges will continue to see a junior who has the chance to be very special the next two years.

Gee Stanley, LB, 6-1, 200, Coral Gables: If you are looking for another great football talent who has emerged from his safety position this year, this is truly one of the outstanding football players on the rise. Had a huge off season and now as the Cavaliers continue to build toward the playoffs, you can guarantee that this is a talent that will start getting plenty of looks from colleges all over the country. By next spring, he should be one of the best in south Florida.

Keir Thomas, DL, 6-2, 220, Miami Central: With no offers as of yet, this Northwestern junior transfer is the mystery of the season so far. Easily one of the most dominating players on a team that could have one of the premier defensive units nationally, this is a prospect who should have Ohio State, Alabama, Miami, FSU interest because he is a tremendous football player who has already earned the respect of nationally rated teams as well as the local programs who have been slow away by his talent, quickness and ability to dominate.
  

Donavan Thompson, LB, 6-0, 200, Miami Central: If you have watched the Rockets play last year or already this season, nobody has to tell you much about what many are calling the best linebacker in south Florida, and perhaps the state of Florida. Just a junior, this quality football talent had 56 tackles in the first three games alone - against nationally rated Hoover (Al.), Stevenson (Ga.) and Booker T. Washington. A true middle linebacker who stops the run, gets to the quarterback and drops into pass coverage. With such a need for a position like this, it seems like an insult that USF is the only school with an offer. Colleges who are not on him will miss out on a game-changer.

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.