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McCartney: "I have to find a fit for me"

As a former college football star at West Virginia and professional football player, Damon Cogdell is trying his best to prepare Ivan McCartney for the tough decision he's going to have to make soon. As McCartney's football coach at Class 6A state champion Miramar High, Cogdell is also trying to toe the fine line of telling him what's right for him and letting him think all for himself.

Ivan McCartney  McCartney still hasn't decided whether or not to join the team he grew up rooting for in Coral Gables, his former high school teammates who are now Mountaineers, or fill some big receiver needs for Urban Meyer at the University of Florida. But after McCartney spends his last recruiting weekend at the University of Miami beginning this Friday, Cogdell expects him to be ready with a decision come Wednesday morning at 9:30 a.m.

"I think he kind of has his mind set of where he's going, but he'll know for sure by Monday," Cogdell said. "I told him he has to be thick skinned. This is a business decision, not an emotional decision. He's taking everything into account.

"He wants to go up to a place where he can play and make a big impact on that team right away. And if not right away, he wants to play the next year. I told him, he also has to look at the school with the highest graduation rate, which coach has been the most loyal to you and always been there. I don't like it when the coach calls you and just talks football. Neither does he. I told him you can't look at in terms of where you are going to live the rest of your life, just the next four years. At the end of the day, he knows it's his life decision."

McCartney, a 6-3, 180-pound U.S. Army All-American, hasn't spoken to reporters recently. But last week, when he came in to take his photos as an All-Broward First Team selection, he spoke to me for five minutes about what he was feeling. Ultimately, he wants to make the best decision for himself. Most experts believe with his coach being a West Virginia grad and two teammates already playing for the Mountaineers (current Miramar receiver Dante Chambers is a WV commitment), the Hurricanes don't stand much of a chance. But McCartney insisted when I talked to him the Hurricanes are very much in it.

"When I went to West Virginia, I felt like I was at home, especially with [quarterback Eugene] Smith and [receiver] Steadman [Bailey] up there," said McCartney, who caught 37 passes for 693 yards and 10 touchdowns -- including three in the state championship victory.

"West Virginia was a fit for Gino and Steadman. I'm not saying it's a fit for me or it isn't. I have to find somewhere that is a fit for me."

Although some might believe otherwise, McCartney said he is not turned off by the number of receivers currently on the Canes roster (1 senior, 4 juniors, 3 sophomores). "I feel like anywhere you go there are going to be receivers," McCartney said. "Depending on your work ethic, that will determine if you get on the field or not. I know anywhere I go, I'm going to work hard to get on the field."

Cogdell calls McCartney's relationship and his own with UM coaches "outstanding."

"Miami has been there loyally for a long time," Cogdell said. "Coach Shannon and I have a great relationship. We have history together. We both grew up at Scott Park. He recruited me coming out of high school. He coached me when he was an assistant with the Dolphins, when I was a linebacker there. We talk all the time about life, how we both grew up at Scott Park and became coaches. He's come by the school a couple times and had a great in home visit with Ivan. They've done what they've had to do."

The question remains, though, will it be enough to keep McCartney home? "I'll find out Monday, but you'll find out Wednesday like everybody else," Cogdell said with a laugh. "I told him to enjoy it, have a little fun with it."

A FEW MORE TIDBITS...

> Locally, McCartney might be the only player Hurricanes fans will be holding the breath for on National Signing Day. Although I haven't spoken to Hialeah defensive end Corey Lemonier of late, our Larry Blustein says it looks more and more like the No. 1 recruit in Miami-Dade County will be going to Florida State.

> Speaking of Mr. Blustein, he and I recorded three podcasts in a Countdown To National Signing Day on Monday night. They are all available for download on our high school podcast The Countdown. Part 2 of our discussion is on the University of Miami. 

> Two years ago, Jordan Futch became sort of the spokesman for the 2008 recruiting class. This year, I'd have to say that guy is Gainesville High linebacker Kevin Nelson. The more I talk to the kid, the more I'm reminded of the old school Canes mentality. The kid bleeds green and orange. I'll have a full interview (audio included) for you tomorrow.

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Two years ago, Jordan Futch became sort of the spokesman for the 2008 recruiting class. This year, I'd have to say that guy is Gainesville High linebacker Kevin Nelson. The more I talk to the kid, the more I'm reminded of the old school Canes mentality. The kid bleeds green and orange. I'll have a full interview (audio included) for you tomorrow.

YEAH AND HE DOESNT LIVE IN THE 3 0 5 EITHER SO LETS BANISH THE MTYH THAT ONLY KIDS DOWN SOUTH HAVE SWAGGER!!!!

Thanks for the great info as usual Manny.

Q: Who is the better prospect, last Years ST. Thomas's Carter or this years McCartney?

Thanks Manny for the new article. One question and a comment..

What do you mean by spokesperson? Is he out there talking trash about how UM is on the rise? That's all well and good but i just want the kid to get in here and start working!

I cringed when u said Lemonier is going to FSU. I know we have decent talent at DL, we need more though and losing this 5 star to the hated rivals... Ugh...

Come on you guys! We gotta go get Doc J and Eightball.

Doc J and Eightball are WASTED!

Good stuff...
Hopfully the kid will follow his heart... There is no place like Miami, to someone who was brought up here.

If he's smart he'll redshirt, to give time for the roster to clear out, then jump on the wave in 211,12,13 and 14.

Hey Ivan... Tell me what's it all about!!!
It's all about the U !!!

I have a good feeling about McCartny and Henderson coming in on the same weekend. Especially with all the former Canes in town.

Go Canes!

Manny da Man! thanks. This class fills the need to fill the trenches. For once, they really focused on getting OL heft and substance. If the OL can finally open holes for running plays, we will contend.

Manny best Podcast I've heard in months Larry B. Killed it.

I know Randy and his staff have been getting a lot of heat for the lack of big-name recruits committing to the U this year, but if Randy can pull a coup and get McCartney and Henderson to sign on, it'll at least quiet the critics for a bit. I believe all the prospects in town for their visit at the U this weekend will be treated to the Pro Bowl, where an all-time record 10 former Hurricanes are participating. If I'm Randy, I'm asking all those 10 Hurricanes Pro Bowlers to come up to these recruits and just state the obvious, no program prepares you for the pros like the U. Imagine Andre Johnson, Ed Reed, Ray Lewis, etc coming up to these kids! Not to mention Reggie Wayne, Jeremy Shockey, and Jonathan Vilma who will be in town, but can't participate in the Pro Bowl cause they're playing in the Super Bowl. This is a HUGE weekend for the U! Go Canes!

idc why miami doesnt want todd chandler. we dont have any other DT commitments. whats the harm in taking him? he should sign at UM anyway and prove the coaches wrong.

Country roads, bring you home, to the place, you belong, West Virginia.........

West VA? A mostly running team? R U kidding?
Plus, son, you cant compare gene Smith and J12

And if you assume youll be starting right away, that means you dont think youre good enough to beat out current cane receivers. Therefore, you aint good enough. Is that what it is?

Randy dosen't have teh patience to deal with big time recruits, these class will rank very low and UM just dosent have the coaches to get these guys to play at an elite level.

"He wants to go up to a place where he can play and make a big impact"

he said UP TO....that means its not UM, its somewhere "north" of miramar.

Shannon is really screwing up theis Northwestern and Chandler thing...he needs to get that resolved ASAP....should have never made the papers like it has

I keep asking why Chandler is not coming to the U.

He was so positive about Miami he committed as a junior & has alot of his friends from NW already on the team.

Is it the coaches who don't want him? They offered him, didn't they?

Whats up with Chandler & NW, no other Bulls are coming this yr.

I just hope Bryant McKinnie can put a spell on Sean and convince him to come to the U

Welcome to The U, Ivan!

Randy Shannon is the man. Loyalty is why coach Hurtt was on the staff so long. As far as recruiting goes, he is doing a phenomenal job. 2,3 and even 4 star recruits will be more hungrier than the lazier 5 star recruits. So all of you so-called canes fans attacking coaco like this need to sit down.

If you want to play for championships gainesville is the place to be.

Four-star defensive end Corey Lemonier (Hialeah, Fla.) is now only considering two programs after eliminating Miami-FL and Tennessee, ESPN affiliate Web site AuburnUndercover.com reports.


These kid is amazing, but he needs to start feeling it! ....We need players like Kevin Nelson and his true Cane Mentality!

Good point Jose. Manny or anyone, any intel on whether the Cane All-Pros and Super Bowl Canes will be meeting up with this weekend's recruits? That would be obviously be the best marketing imaginable for the program.

The big name kids won't come this year because they can't play right away, especially at the skilled positions but if you are a Big time D.T. or O.L. or D.B. we need YOU. McCartney won't come because he won't see the field this year and neither would Lemonier, who would need to gain weight. We have plenty of D.E.'s, we are set at W.R., R.B. & L.B. Next year we have to bring in a Pro-style Q.B. That is an absolute must, PERIOD.

Miami-Dades top recruit going to FSU. It seemed after watching the current D-line players that we need all the help we can get at that position. I know we have plenty of bodies there but we had little to no pass rush from those players. Did Miami not recruit this gay hard or something. Why FSU? With all the D-line injuries this year and the underperformance of other palyers, I thought the "U" would recruit D-line hard. Man that lackluster loss to Wisconsin realy killed the "U". GOOOO! CANES!

If you want to still be UIms biznatch. go to Gainesville- like Hogtown gator is

just read artical on espn shannon has pissed another coach off this time miami northwestern this guy is will never do anything at miami but have the hurricanes a average team every year and now the recruits can see this to.

what about all the big name kids going to florida,usc,and the other big name schools.I get tired of people saying their not coming here because they cant play right away.the truth is their not coming here because were not winning.

Good choice Corey-if you choose the Noles. The Noles will coach you up to the next level better than the cane staff will.

Ivan-you want to play? Better head north to WVU-otherwise you'll be riding the pine with Streeter at the U.

If Shannon was gonna be the next NC winning coach at Miami we would've known his second season. Tressel, Stoops/OU,Meyers,Carroll, Saban, all took their teams to either a NC or a BCS bowl. Shannon and Co went 7-6.

No matter how good we recruit the outcome will be mediocre-with this staff.

I hate when people who don't follow recruiting on a yearly basis are allowed an opinion. Todd Chandler stopped being recruited after they realized he was 5'11 inches tall. We want tall pro style tackles. That is what we did, it is what we will do. We are NFL U, the Gators and Noles...not so much!

Good point Jose. Manny or anyone, any intel on whether the Cane All-Pros and Super Bowl Canes will be meeting up with this weekend's recruits? That would be obviously be the best marketing imaginable for the program.

Posted by: canzfan | January 27, 2010 at 12:42 PM


GREAT IDEA!

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