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'09 Class adds two, shines bright over weekend

If you do the math, there are still another eight spots to fill in the University of Miami's 2009 football signing class. Which means there is still ample room to add some of the nation's top future college football players. But if you a chance this weekend to watch the U.S. Army All-American game and the Under-Armour All-American games you know what coach Randy Shannon has already got lined up looks pretty special.

I know I'm not breaking any news here (I had a long day out covering the Dolphins-Ravens playoff game) but if you don't know by now I'll repeat it: the Canes added two major studs to their collection of 19 commitments Sunday night when they picked up verbals from Sanford Seminole High's Ray Ray Armstrong and Dyron Dye.

Three weeks ago before Seminole rallied from a 21-0 deficit to beat Miami Northwestern in the Class 6A state championship game, I got a chance to speak to both of Armstrong and Dye as well as their coach. Although Miami lost out on the third part of the special Seminole trio (receiver Andre Debose chose Florida), there's no doubt the Hurricanes landed special players. And unlike a lot of those guys you hear about being 6-4, 215 pounds only to find out they're really 6-2, 200 -- these guys are legitimately as large as advertised and just as good.

Armstrong (6-4, 215) tossed the winning touchdown pass to Debose in the 6A state title game and ran for Ray_ray_armstronganother score, outleaping the Bulls into the end zone. What impressed me that night wasn't just that he had the athleticism to play quarterback, running back and receiver, it was his physical toughness. He started at safety and was in on a number of tackles and always looking to lay the wood. ESPN rates him the 18th best recruit in the country and Rivals and Scout each list him as a 4-star recruit. But his addition to UM's class gives the Canes its most special defensive player and someone I truly believe will make an immediate impact like Sean Spence this season. He's too physically gifted and strong not too. His coach called him a Sean Taylor-type player when I spoke to him before about Armstrong. If you watch his highlight reel, you see some of the similarities.

Dyron_dyeDyron Dye (6-5, 230) could potentially make the same type of impact. He played both tight end and defensive end in high school and has tremendous burst and athletic ability. What impresses me the most about Dye is that he already has the NFL body. With some coaching, he could be really special. I think he has the potential to move over to tight end and play that at the next level if he wanted to. But all signs are point right now to a future at defensive end. Check out his highlight tape.

> As good as Miami's two additions are, I think no player might be better in the country than running back Bryce Brown, who earned National Player of the Year honors at the U.S. Army All-American game in San Antonio. UM recruit Brandon McGee told me last Friday he was thoroughly impressed with Brown during the East's practices. He called Brown a special player.

Bryce_brownBryce proved it to the nation Saturday. After dropping a pass that would have gone for a touchdown in the first quarter, he hauled in two long touchdown passes in the second half -- a 60-yarder and a 41-yarder -- displaying his speed and athleticism in earning co-MVP honors. He also led the East with 44 yards rushing on seven carries. While there are reports out there Brown could end up switching schools, I'm not buying it.

> Not all of the Canes had great AA games. Defensive back Prince Kent got beat a few times at the Under-Armour game including by fellow Canes recruit Jamal Reid, who shined at receiver. Miami has plans to try both Kent and Reid at corner. But I'm beginning to believe Kent might be better off at safety and Reid at receiver, a place where he routinely makes plays. McGee played well at corner in the U.S. Army game, but not spectacular. Maybe one of those eight remaining scholarships should be invested on another legit cornerback.

> Later this week, I'm going to start my interview tour with current Canes commitments and potential recruits. I'm also planning on picking up the recruiting podcasts with Larry Blustein and Charles Fishbein.

> One quick basketball note. Did anybody see Boston College's upset of No. 1 North Carolina Sunday? The Eagles were picked to finish last in the ACC and some folks were thinking the Tar Heels might go unbeaten. Guess not. The Eagles are 13-2 and host the Canes this coming Saturday. I'll be up there for the game.

Comments

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yea that has been the rave around miami trying to see were bryce is headed since there has been speculation about him decommit and end up in oregon but hopefully not RS is laying the foundation for miami can't wait to see what OC we get and hopefully this all american 5 star o-line man that is going to visit the U AND OF course the other prospects

Great job as always Manny. Any news on the new OC? I heard that maybe an annoucement would be made later on today.

Do you hear that sound????? It's the sound of Randy building a bigger fence.

Welcome to the family future canes in Ray Ray & Dyron! I'm also hoping Bryce sticks with us, but i have this feeling that he will in the end, especially when he makes his official visit in January! Hey Manny any news on the potential oc candidates? I'm hearing Major Applewhite's name but i'd rather someone with oc experience! What do you think about Mike Martz, Chuck Long, or Marc Trestman?

okan!

pass this on to coach shannon-out of those nine scholarship he has left,look into those productive juco and get three good d-tacles and atight end-remember coach shannon everything is now in football,that,s the profession.Iam Joel and William Joseph coach when they were in high school =the physical aspect of a high school player entering college and going against 300+ offensive linemen is equivilant to college players going pro d-tackles ,you can count them on half ahand that make significant contribution to the program right away.one last point -you could get those d-ends buts a little to the outside ,that keeps the game between the hash marks.Coach Perkins move to sebring fl. -You,re doing a good Job but ignorance has a way of knocking on your door.Coach Sanders.

Give Shannon til 2010......

That picture of Ray Ray is eerily similar to Sean Taylor (R.I.P.) isn't it ya'll... On another note, RRA's physicality, and DD's quickness off the edge, is what these Miami Hurricanes defenses have been missing these last few years. But judging by these last to classes that RS and His staff have put together, The Hurricanes are getting back to how A REAL 4-3 DEFENSE is staffed, and executed, two big DTs (Forston and Regis) in the interior middle, an intelligent and physical MLB (Spence), and a presence at the Strong safety (Armstrong), and there you have the heart of a dominant 4-3.

I really think that this class is shaping up to be another good one. I just hope that Coach Shannon and staff now turn all of their attention towards the DL/OL. You can have all the speed you want on edges, but if your tackles aren't taking blocks; that speed is negated.

Manny, any word on the Canes making a pass at Eugene Smith now that Marve is gone?

I agree with everyone above. This class is great now, and just needs the trimmings. We have two JC O-lineman and some smaller kids who project to the position coming in. We need 1 or 2 legit lineman, preferrably JC guys that can hold the position until these 270 lb "tight ends" we have coming in grow into tackles. We need to keep Bryce Brown! We need 1-2 defensive tackles, and this is what I've been most disappointed about because that kid going to Rutgers (forget the name...Vernon?) hurt. We don't need a QB now, but it can't hurt. Lots of little, underrated athletic QB's out there we can grab and turn to corners next year when we grab a 5-star guy (and I hear Miami's name a lot in articles about 2010 QB's, so that may be the plan for RS and the boys).

Whatever happens, we now have 2 of the 3 main cogs in this years FL state champs, like we got every player we wanted off of last years Fl state champs. Just keep picking the best players off the best teams and you win championships. Ignore stars, get winners.

GO CANES!

Manny- While I will be ecstatic if Bryce Brown stays onhis earlier commit, I wondered about that kid Berry who I saw was going to Ohio State-

I still wonder how does a Miami kid who is good enough to be recruited to OSU as an rb is passed over by the canes? or was it the other way around? or was it b/c our current crop of rbs plus brown?

Manny, three requests:
1. When you report on recruits please indicate how they are doing academically. (I'm tired about all the hype surrounging top-rated recruiting classes, when key recruits eventually fail to enroll because they don't meet NCAA/UM academic standards. On a related note who is going to enroll in January?).
2. Please focus on linemen. (All these so-called skill players can't do anything special without solid line play. And it appears that our recruiting class, again, is deficient in the trenches.)
3. Which JUCO players are we recruiting, if any. (Are any of them really any good?)

THANKS!

I watched both games and did not see one OL or DL commit to Miami. Of the 150 ESPNU top recruits in the country, Miami Ranked 10th out 15 top schools. Got some great defensive backs and offensive speed but no big linemen which Randy really needs. Until any of these guys sign it's only a verbal anyway so nothing is etched in stone.

Now you can see why it's really important to get this program on the radar. USC still getting the cream of the crop. FL and FSU were ahead of Miami. Getting an OC is going to be critical to what type of offensive philosophy Shannon is going to run to get these kids to formally commit. Hope the OC is named soon.

SOME POSITIVE/OPTIMISTIC SPIN FROM ESPN

Future holds national titles and Heismans for Class of '09
By Tom Luginbil

Predicting the future success of 17-year-old high school football prospects is an inexact science, but that doesn't mean it can't be done. Here, in no particular order, are nine fearless recruiting predictions for 2009.

1. After landing ESPN's top-rated recruiting class in 2008 -- and with another very good class on the way in 2009, led by RB Bryce Brown (Wichita, Kan./East) -- the Miami Hurricanes will win the ACC in 2009 and go to a BCS bowl.

http://sports.espn.go.com/ncaa/recruiting/football/columns/story?columnist=luginbill_tom&page=predictions09/recruiting

Why don't we make a play for Greg Reid. The kid was sick - had two picks, almost a third. He decommitted from Florida some time ago, and apparently is up for grabs. I think he's from South Georgia.

Giver Shannon credit. He keeps bringing in playmakers which this team desperately needs. The senior class had none. The upcoming NFL draft will show how low the talent level had fallen at the U. We all see Shannon's game day coaching issues. However, if he keeps bringing in these studs and the coaching shows some improvement, we will continue to see better results out of the U. The 2008 team was better than the aweful '07 team which was painful to watch. The OC pick is vital for Shannon. He is very hands-off with the O and needs get someone he is comfortable with. Hopefully, he learned something from the Nix debacle.

Manny- While I will be ecstatic if Bryce Brown stays onhis earlier commit, I wondered about that kid Berry who I saw was going to Ohio State-

I still wonder how does a Miami kid who is good enough to be recruited to OSU as an rb is passed over by the canes? or was it the other way around? or was it b/c our current crop of rbs plus brown?

Posted by: jaime | January 05, 2009 at 06:56 AM

Miami did not recruit him.

ARMSTRONG is rated much higher on ESPN 150, ranked #18 overall regardless of position, and higher ranked than debose. The announcers , luginbill especially chose the rosters and ranks them for ESPN, so, I would bet ESPN rankings are more exact than rivals and scout. Read armstongs write up on espn.com college football, click recruiting. Says is a star, and possibly the best of the 3. They say we R #10 on their rankings now, but this can push us into top 5. Thats w/o 8 more top committs still to come. DYE IS AWESOME IS WELL----with the 7 or so WR playmakers we took last yr, plus streeter redshirted, debose has less comp at UF in front of him. GREAT DAY FOR THE U , and more All Americans are on the way. We have not had this much talent once august rolls around since the 03-04 teams. If Randy can bring in 2-3 more OLine studs, and another 2 big defenders on the line, which we R in on many, we r looking real good.

Just to add to the info. about Jamal Berry: Yes, the Canes did not recruit him, not because they thought he was no good, but because they already had Bryce Brown and Mike James. They also knew that Lamar Miller was a silent commit going into his high school season (before he made his announcement a couple of month back).

Armstrong reminds me of Sean Taylor
Dye reminds me of Jevon Kearse

Future looks bright for the canes!

Greg Reid is from Lowndes High in Valdosta Ga. He is a burner....

awesome job, manny. this is a stellar class and i'm excited to see what else is coming down the pipeline. any news on the new oc would be greatly appreciated.

Kent will definitely play safety in college. He's going to be a project for U coaches. He has a lot of talent, but is very raw in terms of fundamentals and football instinct. Remember, he only has two years of football experience. He'll probably redshirt and it may not be until his junior year until he can start.

http://sports.espn.go.com/ncaa/recruiting/football/columns/story?columnist=luginbill_tom&page=predictions09/recruiting

After landing ESPN's top-rated recruiting class in 2008 -- and with another very good class on the way in 2009, led by RB Bryce Brown (Wichita, Kan./East) -- the Miami Hurricanes will win the ACC in 2009 and go to a BCS bowl.

OC = David Lee of the Miami Dolphins????

I keep hearing Major Applewhite's name pop up as the most probable candidate for OC. Anybody have any additional info about this possible hire? It would explain why things have been so quiet on the OC front. Texas (Major is currently on the UT staff) plays OSU tonight and, if he is our guy, I would expect to hear something certain in the next couple of days.

Manny said in an earlier blog that he was the best available candidate for the job but I just kind of blew it off. Manny may well have been right.

" watched both games and did not see one OL or DL commit to Miami. Of the 150 ESPNU top recruits in the country, Miami Ranked 10th out 15 top schools. Got some great defensive backs and offensive speed but no big linemen which Randy really needs. Until any of these guys sign it's only a verbal anyway so nothing is etched in stone.

Now you can see why it's really important to get this program on the radar. USC still getting the cream of the crop. FL and FSU were ahead of Miami. Getting an OC is going to be critical to what type of offensive philosophy Shannon is going to run to get these kids to formally commit. Hope the OC is named soon.

Posted by: canesfansc"

Those rankings from ESPN are not updated. They do not include the new commits. Trust me, this is now a top 5 class. Keep looking for ESPN to update their rankings eventually.

Does anyone know who are some names out there for the next OC at the U?

Rivals latest has the U at No. 11, and this includes Ray Ray,and DD. We have 1 five star and that's Bryce. I hope he STILL wants to come to the U. I don't place much in the rankings.

God I wish Chud would come back, but he's loving the NFL. Hey what about Coker as OC, he was pretty good at that wasn't he, lol?

Don't laugh but Choker did a decent job as OC, certainly better than Nix. However, after what he did to this team as HC I really wouldn't want to see him anywhere NEAR this program.

MANNY do you think if we get the right OC, he and Ray Ray Armstrong and Dyron Dye could talk debose into switching from that gimicky offense up north to our pro-style offense here at the U? there is room for him here and we need another great returner(injuries).I want debose to decommit and join his buddies here at the U.
MANNY whats up with ramon buchanon ?

dyron dye looks like he knows the snap count. the most explosive first step i have ever seen in high school.

Our class ranking will be underrated on a couple of recruiting websites because one of our commits, OL Jermaine Johnson, is unrated on scout and rivals.com. Rivals has referred to him as a "5-star" recruit on one of their articles, but when you get to his profile it shows up as unrated. ESPN, however, does give him a rating (albeit a 2007 rating before he played at an academy for a year), so to a certain degree, ESPN will be the more accurate predictor of where we stand against other schools and we'll have to mentally move our ranking up a spot or two on rivals and scout. On a related note, scout supposedly got a confirmation from a 5-star DL (Marcus Hall) that he's picking the U so let's hope their right! GO CANES!!!

David Lee. GatorAid, I knew there a name stuck in the cobbwebs of my mind.

One of my son's and I where discussing this name several weeks ago, before it looked like the Fins
were in the playoffs and Nix had been let go.

Interesting.


GoCanes

I feel with this recruiting class, which should move to the Top 5 after this weeks adjustments, a tradition of NC's, a potential Heisman candidate in Brown and a "money's no object" statement from Shalalalala Seems like we should be able to attract a quality guy.

Looking forward to an announcement.

GoCanes

I hope I'm wrong but I seem to recall that OL Jermaine Johnson is still a nonqualifier despite his time in prep school.

I hope he can meet the NCAA/UM academic requirements. Needless to say, by all accounts, he would be a real asset to oUr team. We definitely need him - and a few more with his size and ability - on the O-line.

I would not worry too much about O line guys, the U will be better next yr than the past yr. Plus you think Utah got any players at all in these games, its all about player development. Good job Manny.

Sha La La said that "money's no object." WHERE DID YOU READ THAT? Quite to the contrary, she's been telling the trustees, faculty, students and UM staff that THERE'S NO MONEY for anything.

Also, remember the Sprint for UM Athletics that was announced with great fanfare when Randy Shannon was hired? Unfortunately, the SPRINT wasn't going ANYWHERE fast. Moreover, given the state of the economy, contributions for UM athletics - and everything else - are dropping like a rock.

Don't expect UM to pay JUMBO-type money to the OC.

Looking at Coach RS's recruiting process and his move to hire a new Offensive Coordinator tells you that RS is moving the program in the right direction so that it is more in line with the U's past glory and traditions. First, no recruit has expressed concern that Nix is gone. Second, one of the greatest selling-points for a recruit considering the U over the years has been that the U runs "pro-style" offenses and defenses. As a result, the U can frankly tell recruits it develops NFL-type and NFL-ready players, and that the NFL will not be as big of an adjustment. That distiguishes the U from the Gators (Meyer's spread offense and Spurrier's run-and-gun before), which does not produce the same type of NFL personnel. Its a good selling point for potential recruits looking to develop and move on to the NFL and become stars at that level. Like USC, we should sell the program to recruits as a "pro-style" program.

Hey Nemo, your game is Thursday night, stay off of our blog Gaytor troll!! You guys are fools to think that you are going to de-rail the train with your negative blogging! Enjoy your run! You better hope you win Thusday!!

Go 'canes!!

Why don't we make a play for Greg Reid. The kid was sick - had two picks, almost a third. He decommitted from Florida some time ago, and apparently is up for grabs. I think he's from South Georgia.

Posted by: JDS | January 05, 2009 at 08:53 AM


Not that I think we'd have a shot at him, but we could sure use a corner with his ball skills, recovery speed and anticipation. That kid was all over the place last night. It seemed like he was in the frame on every pass attempt. Yeah, the two picks were pretty impressive, but what really stood out to me were the approximately 9,023 pass break ups he had to go with the picks. Whoever gets that kid is set on one side of the field for the next four years.

5 Star Marcus Hall commits to Canes. Keep em coming boys, keep em coming. GO CANES!!!!

Greg Reid is Jamal Reid's cousin, and apparently there were rumors he was considering joining his cuz here, and then soon after those rumors came out, he decommitted from UF. He still doesn't have us on his list, but rumors are still flying that Jamal's been talking him up to come here where he'd have a chance to start right away. Again, so far, they're only rumors...but intriguing nonetheless.

I agree; Greg Reid was impressive. Does anyone know why he hasn't been on the Canes radar? Scout.com has him listed as having medium interest and even an offer from FIU. He also has offers from UF and FSU. SO he's obviously interested in playing in the sunshine state. How come Miami isn't on his list? There has to be a reason.

Greg Reid is Jamal Reid's cousin, and apparently there were rumors he was considering joining his cuz here, and then soon after those rumors came out, he decommitted from UF. He still doesn't have us on his list, but rumors are still flying that Jamal's been talking him up to come here where he'd have a chance to start right away. Again, so far, they're only rumors...but intriguing nonetheless.

Posted by: Hey...Ur Momma | January 05, 2009 at 01:01 PM


Wow, first I'd heard of that. That would be HUGE. Along with Oline, we need some help in that back 4. Prince Kent was not impressive last night. I'm sure he's got skills, but he's not ready for big time, maybe after a redshirt. McGee looked good, no problems there and he is as true a Cane as they come. But Reid was by far the most impressive corner I saw in the all star games. Come to the U, Greg Reid, there is a spot on the field waiting for you to shut down.

cola cane is that the truth about marcus hall is it on canesport.com?

Apparently, Greg Reid was expected to be a Gator lock ever since we locked-up his cuz. Obviously no one knows if RS and crew wrote him off or if they've still been in his ear. Regardless, he's decommitted now, so he's fair game. I have to assume they're going after him hard now, and I'm sure his cuz is helping. It'll be a good one to follow.

Cleaning up a few points:

First I'll deal with "nemo2002".

A) Comrade Shlalalala made this announcement three times, first time; as Young was hired and introduced to the media.

The next two a announcements came after Nix's firing, one as she was interviewed at a recent B-Ball game and the other one occurred on tv while discussing the all things at the U, including the Nix firing.

And with regard to "her telling" trustees, faculty etc. I know a couple trustees; one hates athletics and told me "he's in the minority there" but assured me they have enough money for any top national coach they want, much to his chagrin. The other trustee agreed with the previous statement, but said there's a lot of private money available for these situations.

So, hold your sour grapes until we "switch" a couple of your recruits our way.

GoCanes

Come ON ger real. MAyor Applewhite????
NO man,
We need a REAL OC like LUDWIG

Greg Reid looked great, I would hope that he is interested in the U and we are interested in him. He looked like a natural CB.

Due to lack of players Prince Kent was playing out of position at CB, he will be playing S at the U.

Marcus Hall? I know nothing about that, only rumors so far.

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