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Canes' commitment Malcolm Lewis has Miramar 3 wins away from 2nd state title

With the Canes season officially wrapped up, I'll be passing through a few local high schools over the next couple weeks to catch up with some of the top local players and teams as the playoffs wind down. Monday, I got a chance to catch up with Miramar High receiver and Canes commitment Malcolm Lewis. Here is the longer version of the feature story I turned in tonight.

Marlene Lewis and her husband Marvin like to get into playful arguments over where their youngest son Malcolm -- a star receiver at Miramar High and University of Miami commitment -- got his athletic talents.

Malcolm LewisMarlene, a mother of five and information management technician at Orange Brook Elementary in Hollywood, says Malcolm got his 4.3-speed in the 40-yard dash from her. In high school, Marlene ran on the 100, 200 and 4x100-meter relay teams at American High in Miami.

Marvin, a former defensive tackle at American High who now serves as a cook for inmates at various Miami-Dade County jails, takes credit for Malcolm's size (5-11, 190) and toughness -- and some of that speed, too.

But Malcolm's passion for football? That's all him.

"You watch him on the field and no matter what, he always gives his best effort. Whether they throw the ball to him or not, he always runs full speed," Marvin Lewis said. "I tell him he's better than me. I wouldn't run that hard every play."

Said Marlene: "He's been that way since he was a little boy. I'd take him to the grocery store with me and he would run around, make all these cuts and spins like somebody was trying to tackle him. I always used to have to scream at him, 'Boy you aren't on the field.' He just loves the game."

Lewis has grown up to be one of the best high school receivers in the country -- and a bonafide leader for the Patriots, who are just three wins away from winning two state titles in three years. Friday night, Miramar, 11-0 and ranked No. 4 in the nation by USA Today, will host Palm Beach Gardens (9-2-1) in the Region 3-8A final.

According to Rivals.com, he's rated the 26th best receiver in the country. He's also considered an ESPN Top 150 recruit (146th) regardless of position. Statistically, though, his numbers hardly represent his talent. Lewis, who caught an 8-yard touchdown pass in his team's win playoff last week against Cypress Bay, has just 37 catches for 535 yards and six touchdowns this season -- middle of the pack numbers compared to other elite receivers in Broward County.

But a big part of that is the number of double and triple teams he draws, setting up opportunities for others on his team to succeed. Lewis is hardly bothered by his lack of big numbers and his coach, Damon Cogdell, said Lewis is an example of a selfless player.

"I don't pay attention to stats," Lewis said. "It's going to come to me. I'm just going to do what I do when I get the ball in my hands."

In the past, whenever Lewis has had the ball in his hands it's usually resulted in big plays. As a sophomore, he caught the winning touchdown pass from Ryan Williams (now at UM) in Miramar's state semifinal win over Miami Central. Earlier this season in Miramar's stunning upset of St. Thomas Aquinas, he caught a touchdown pass in the back of the end zone on fourth down to help rally the Patriots.

"Just a great kid and a real Patriot," Cogdell said. "He's the type of kid you want your daughter to bring home. Don't let the dreads fool you. He's a very humble kid. And truthfully, he's probably the most talented kid I got out here.

"He doesn't complain. I remember last year there was many games where he was wide open and we didn't get the ball to him. He never complained. It was kind of scary. He just never complains."

Tracy HowardTracy Howard, Lewis' best friend and an All-American cornerback at Miramar, says Lewis remains the best receiver he's had to face in high school.

"He's just so fast. Once he gets up field, he's gone," Howard said. "He's 190. You don't expect him to be that fast. I like to play press. You play press and he beats you, that's it. I think that's what separates him from most guys. He's physical enough to break away and he's fast."

Miramar has sent quite a few receivers to college over the past few years: Ivan McCartney (West Virginia), Stedman Bailey (West Virginia) Donte Chambers (Morgan St.), Rashad Gholston (Florida State), Terrance Gourdine (Eastern Michigan), Denzell McCollum (leaving junior college now).

Cogdell won't go as far as calling Lewis the best of the bunch out of respect for all of the receivers who have played for him, but calls him special. Cogdell said Lewis has dropped just two passes thrown his way this season.

"Great hands, strong hands, good route runner, just overall good kid," Cogdell said. "I would love to have him on defense at safety or corner. But we try to utilize him on offense and special teams.

"The scary part about it is I don't think colleges are giving him due justice. He's got a lot of offers, but there aren't many schools who really followed up on him and recruited him that hard. Miami did and stayed on him. But I thought for sure there would be more teams on him. To me, he's one of the best in the country."

Lewis orally committed to UM coaches two weeks ago and says the decision is "a done deal for right now." While other schools continue to recruit him, he said it's doubtful he'll change his mind because he wants to stay close to home.

"For me, it's really all about family," said Lewis, who had LSU, Florida State, Alabama and Florida as his other finalists.

"I took a visit to West Virginia and I liked it. But it's so far away. I know if I stay down here I can play in front of my family. I live right down the street from [Sun Life Stadium]. On gamedays, this whole section over here [at Miramar] is filled with my family and friends. My granddaddy, cousins, nieces. I just want to play close by for them."

> Two Florida State coaches were on hand at Monday's practice at Miramar to check out Howard, who is considered the No. 1 cornerback in the country by Rivals.com.

Howard told me Monday, "Florida, Florida State, LSU and Alabama are the four schools that are really in it" for his services. Asked if the Canes have no shot at him Howard said: "They're still in the running, but not like those four schools.

"Malcolm picked Miami because it was the best school for him. They recruited him the hardest, showed him the most love. I feel like it's the best for him, especially with the quarterback situation. You got Ryan Williams who played with him two years ago. But I have to look at what the best fit is for me."

Is Howard closer to a decision? "I'm still in the same place," he said. "Everyday it changes. Somedays I want to make a decision, the next day I'll be like 'No.' Malcolm and I always told each other we might go to the same school. But when you look at it, you always want to do what's best for you. But it's still possible we could play together."

Comments

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Hope Lewis can sway Howard to become a Cane.

Howard could start fornow theu right now, without cleats on!!!!! Get him Al!

Florida? Florida state? Both programs have been rated top 5 for last couple years and havent done much with those recruits. Wish we could get Howard but we are not even in the finalist group so most likely it's not gonna happen. I hope high school kids look at the U as an opportunity to help rebuild the program. I would think in the end when winning a NC it would be more satisfying than simply going to bama or LSU.


W

Posted by: Tebow | November 27, 2011 at 08:14 PM

W

Posted by: McGahee | November 27, 2011 at 08:38 PM

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A Gator and a Cane

Posted by: It's A Team Thang ... | November 29


Bad Boys both ... Teamates

This is a great catch... We need local kids to add to the program.. great job Coach al

T. Howard, come to the U and start immediately!

I certainly hope that M. Lewis becomes a Cane, but I really do not understand what "a done deal for right now" means. Is this a commitment or just a preference?

I also hope that T. Howard will see the opportunity he has right at home.

Williams and Lewis should be a nice combo since they already have chemistry.

Malcom,
Welcome to you and your family to the Canes family. Can't wait to see you on the field at Sun Life!

Teacy, something special is happening at Miami. Take another look. You can be an early starter!

GO CANES!!

Kid is undersized and will never help UM to elite status. UM has swinging gate line play. He'll never see the ball.

But more importantly, we all know that canesrule...
Loves da kak in his mouf

Thanks Manny good job...Blue chip prospects that talk a lot about commitment and family..
Let us get some Miramar guys and keep them close rather than W.Va., and the 'Noles..
Playing in front of the family and friends do mean something...
Go 'Canes.

Lets see how this pans out before we start blabbering about 4-star this 5-star that. Bottom line is Um should have recruited Vernon and Varner, 2 local boys who have been perennially on the top in receiving nationally and in the ACC (Vernon has 1 more year). Instead we were stuck with Byrd and AJ who didnt do squat.

Before we talk about wrs, we need a good smart QB that can fling it more times to the wrs and TEs than to the defense.

While its hard to ignore the star system, I think we should. Florida and florida state are the perfect examples of how flawed it is. TCU and Boise State are another example of how flawed it is. Its hard to hear all of the rave reviews about players and not hope that they go to Miami but, we are not gonna get a lot of these 5 star guys. I have no idea what Jimbo, the SEC are offering these guys, but we definitely cant match. My standard for recruiting is Butch Davis, never had a #1 class and yet always recruited the best players. He has an eye for talent unmatched in college football. If it werent for the suspensions his UNC team would have been dominant. I hope Al Golden has that same eye or something close. We don't need 5 star players, lets get the best players for the system and school and lets go from there.

Verner and Varnon were at different times than now. Al Golden wasn't here to recruit them so that is a moot point.
Malcolm Lewis, we are very happy that you chose to be a Miami Hurricane and we will cheer for you just as hard as your family does on Saturday.
Tracy, it seems as though you want to go with the "BIG NAME" college. That is certainly your perogative. You have earned that right. But when will it get back to the Highsmith days when the kids wanted to win for the local school.
It is coming soon, I'll tell you that. With Al Golden leading this team, by the time Malcolm is a senior in college, Miami will be back among the elite, playing for his hometown.
And how far away from home will the rest of our kids be.
Believe in Al Golden, the man is THE TRUTH.

Howard could have started THIS season at CB for us. If he wants the best situation for him, THIS IS IT!!!

[]_[] GO CANES []_[]

WELCOME TO THE []_[] Mr. Isadora!!!

Posted by: Best cfb program the last 32 years

Anyone see what Teddy Bridgewater is doing? How did we let that kid go?

TheWhat and Big Daddy Cane: amen...

I agree with you guys. Great posts and a good eye for talent cannot be measured by a STAR system...
Amen again.

Go 'Canes.

to canesalltheway. Bridgewater went with Hurrt. Hurrt is the main reason for our mess with Shapiro, and the NCAA. He was the one introducing Shapiro to the players from what I have read. Nice of the NCAA to give him immunity for telling all he knew. I hope the NCAA keeps a eye on Hurrt. He got away with it once.He will try again... Welcome to the U Mr.Lewis and Mr. Isadora... I do not think Golden deserved a extension, but I do believe he will turn out to be a great coach for the U.

We know UM is recruiting Howard and the Columbus safety as hard as rules will allow, UM aint exactly Mecca like it was for kids in the 90's and early 2000's. What's keeping these local kids from jumping on UM is that we aren't not winning or dominating most teams. You'll see an incremental increase in top knotch State of Miami commitments as we increase wins and create excitement about the team again. Until that happens these kids will consider other teams. We ain't got no BLING to offer now, just a dream.

Posted by: TAMPA CANE

You are correct. Losing to BC in front of a pathetic crowd which was supposed to be our "bowl game" was flat out embarrassing.

@Canes all the way I agree. Watching the BC game was disgusting. I tell you this i'm glad that we're not going to a bowl game. For these seniors that played that last game. I'm very happy that they're gone it's a shame how the looked for their last game. Travis.B I don't know what happened to u homie.

Welcome to the "U" Mr.Lewis & Mr.Isadore. Come in with a positive attitude and good work ethics. The fans will be seeing you on the field on Saturday's.

Tracy Howard & Deion Bush guys please come to the U. Look @ it like this you can start. You will get T.V exposure your representing one of the best College Football programs. You will go to the NFL. You have a good education. Your close to home with your families. What more can you ask for. Amos Leggett,Tracy Howard,Thomas Finnie,Dallas Crawford. Deion Bush taking Ray Ray job or Vaughn Telemaque's. Man you guys are in a win,win situation. If you come to the U I know our Defense will be marvellous. Please come to the U fell'as we need you guys.

Now Hiring

Now Accepting Applications

Help Wanted

To all high schools Elite Defensive Backs, Linebackers and Defesive Linemen, The opportunity is bright for you at TheU. Start next year trust me

@Rchy homie I agree with you on your comment. They all should come to da U because they will get alot of playin time. If they're serious they will play if not then they'll be benched.But with the Talent we have that's there these kids can come in and take over just like Chikillo & Perryman did.


We picked up another Linebacker slash defensive end.

Gabriel Terry 6'3 210 4.5 40.

Yep right when we lost that punk as$ receiver to Ohio St (he woulda redshirt anyways),Al Golden sign him. Check him out on youtube he is a beast.

Golden will bring in a awesome class this coming year, except this one will dominate. Golden and this coaching staff wont let it be any different than that. Look at the recruits they all ready brought in. Perryman, Chickallo, Dorsett all had great years. Cant wait to see King next year. Be back to winning championships soon cane brothers. GO CANES!!!!!

We could be looking at an all freshman secondary next year. From my keyboard to God's ears..please.

All I know is that if I were a Defensive Back, Linebacker or Defensive Linemen I would definitely have THE U at the top my list, come in work hard, start as a Freshman, FSU, two #1 recruiting classes and they are regressing, UF, like five #1 recruiting classes, where are they at? 8-4 and 6-6, not too much ground for the THE U to make up. It took Butch David 3 to 4 years to make THE U dominant, I expect THE U to be on top in 2 years time.

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