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Valentine acknowledges his heart is with LSU and says UM "must show me something" on official visit

U.S. Army All-American defensive tackle Travonte Valentine got an early morning visit at Hialeah Champagnat from Hurricanes coach Al Golden and a couple of assistants on Tuesday.

Golden was there for two reasons: he wanted to make sure the 6-5, 325-pound Valentine was going to give the Canes an official visit this coming weekend and a shot to earn his signature on National Signing Day.

Mission accomplished.

Valentine, tabbed the 65th best 2014 prospect (regardless of position) according to 247Sports' composite rankings, said he assured Golden that he and his mother would visit Coral Gables officially this coming weekend. And he also said UM still has a shot to win him over, even though it's pretty clear LSU has his heart "as of right now."

"I don't know [what Miami has to do to change my heart]," said Valentine, who was wearing an LSU backback during a half hour interview at school with The Miami Herald Tuesday. "They just have to show me something."

That something is kind of difficult to put a finger on right now. Valentine, who de-committed from Miami late last month when the Golden to Penn State rumors were running rampant, knows he can come in and play early at Miami given the current state of the defensive line.

He also knows what Coral Gables is all about. Valentine said he's been down to UM so many times already he can't remember exactly how many unofficial visits he's made. So why does he feel the need to go there again this coming weekend?

"Just to have a good time with the players and the commits," he said.

Apparently Valentine hasn't done enough of that already. Valentine said while he's bonded with the coaches at UM, he hasn't felt the same "bonding experience" with Canes players and recruits. He said the reason his trip to LSU was special was because he did feel that bonding experience with a few former South Floridians who now call Baton Rouge home.

Valentine called that "a really big" factor.

"Team bonding," Valentine said when asked what he's ultimately looking for before making a final decision. "I want to bond with the team. I want everything to be good, a family situation when I get there.

"Like what I had this past weekend with [LSU freshman cornerback] Rashard Robinson [a Pompano Ely grad], [LSU freshman defensive tackle] Quan Bain [a University School grad] and [Hallandale senior safety and LSU 2014 commitment] John Battle. I have chemistry with them boys."

Valentine said he's already discussed rooming with Battle at LSU.

"Even though I can’t say I have that at Miami, I can have that [chemistry eventually] with guys like Chad Thomas, Anthony Moten, Mike Smith and Braxton Berrios," Valentine said. "We just have to build it."

When it comes to relationships, Valentine said he's been building a strong one with LSU assistant Corey Raymond since November. How is his chemistry with Canes assistant coach Hurley Brown? "It's pretty good," Valentine said. "Coach Hurley has known my stepdad since high school."

Valentine said Golden's recruiting pitch Tuesday was pretty clear cut. He brought up the history Miami has had with defensive linemen, and that he wants to have the opportunity to coach another great one. Valentine said Golden ended his pitch by saying: 'Let me coach you.'

How did those words make Valentine feel?

"Those were pretty big, decent words," Valentine said. "I felt like that’s something I have to think about."

Valentine promises he will and will do so before making his announcement on Signing Day. Champagnat coach Mike Tunsil said the school is planning to have its ceremonies around 10:30 a.m.

"I can never fault Miami for the way they've recruited Travonte," Tunsil said. "They did a great job recruiting him. I could never complain about that. They’ve been on him hard. They had the defensive coordinator, the d-line coach, the head coach over here. Overall, I think they could recruit our school better. But as far as Travonte, they’ve done great."


> For those of you sweating over Chad Thomas' recruiting visits to Florida State last weekend and his upcoming visit to Alabama -- go ahead and stop.

The five-star All-American defensive end made it pretty clear Tuesday he isn't planning on breaking Canes hearts on Signing Day.

"There’s no suspense," Thomas said. "I’ve been throwing up The U since the first game of the season. I’m not really trying to build any suspense, get anybody wound up, rowdy. Miami coaches knew I was going to take trips. They've just told me to have fun –- not just too much fun."

Thomas, an aspiring musician when he isn't killing quarterbacks on the football field, has been looking at UM's Frost Music School since well before the Hurricanes ever offered him a football scholarship. As a student at New World School of the Arts in Miami, he's been playing the piano, tuba and a number of other instruments for years and dreaming of attending Miami's music school.

While he said seeing FSU's music school -- and having a long talk with former Seminole Myron Rolle -- were nice experiences last weekend, Miami is still his school.

"It's two different music programs," Thomas said. "They look more into the production side at FSU. Miami has a great production side too. But I think the production side and band side at Miami are both great."

Has Alabama talked to Thomas about music? "No. Just football," he said with a grin.

Is he 100 percent Hurricane? "Yes sir," Thomas said. "Alabama knows that. They're just doing their job recruiting me."

> Booker T. offensive coordinator Tim Harris Jr. said he believes Thomas and defensive end Demetrius Jackson will both sign with UM next Wednesday.

Jackson, a three-star recruit according to 247Sports, visited Arkansas last weekend after telling a few recruiting websites he wasn't taking any more trips and was solid to UM.

"Arkansas was the first school that offered him," Harris Jr. said. "It’s a big school, SEC school. It’s only right to go on an official visit like that. I’ve seen people have bashed him on his Twitter for it. People don’t understand he just wants to take a visit. Kids work themselves to get this point. Us as coaches we help them along the way, but those kids, this is their moment. At the end of the day I think he’s going to stick with Miami as well."


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Looks like this recruiting class will also not be a good measuring stick given the NCAA decision coming late in the recruiting season and then the PSU nonsense. Unfortunate. Golden needs to stop the recruiting leakage of 4 and 5-star recruits from So. Florida before the program can start competing at an elite level.


hey jonny c. (troll) wanna make a wager where kayaa ends up?.. how bout when he signs with the U nxt wk you just quit posting your idiotic lies here?

What will it take to get some university to take Al Golden away from Miami? That will remain the most important question that is needed for Miami to become a winning football team.

People who bash these recruits for taking their visits are fools. Get a life! These kids deserve to take all 5 visits if that's what they want. It's a once in a lifetime opportunity for them. How about letting them enjoy it. If UM can get Valentine, it will be a real bonus to a really good class. Hopefully, Golden can pull in one big surprise that is not really on the radar.

Golden's flirting with PState will cost us Valantine, & 2 others. D-line is our greatest need. I think it's too late now, the damage is done.

Just heard from a very reliable UM Football inside source that Brad Kaaya has informed Coach Golden that he intends to decommit from Miami and will decide to play QB between hometown UCLA and USC. Kaaya has been a solid Canes commit since August, his first offer, and was basically an unknown National prospect until his vast rise during his Senior Season which opened up many eyes. especially the Bruins and Trojans who are both putting on the full press to gain his LOI.

Two things, before any of you here bash this kid, myself and my source, first know Kaaya, a very loyal, sensitive and great kid, is heartbroken about how this whole process has unfolded and feels terrible for Coach Golden and all the Cane fans that supported him as an unknown. But he feels he owes it to Golden to not let him know of hos decision right before or on Signing day giving Golden and the Canes staff enough time to actively recruit another QB. Which is what Golden is doing now. Cue Trean Harris, late but better than never. As for bashing me, thats fine, the truth stings sometimes, but the story of Kaaya and how he basically blossomed out of nowhere is a great one. And he's an L.A. kid to the core. There's just no way, with all that pressure to be the hometown L.A. hero to stay home, UCLA and USC wouldn't rise to the top once those schools made their big push. Which they both have. Also, don't look for this to become official for maybe a week, per Golden's wishes, until Golden can hopefully secure Harris and perhaps the miniscule hope that Golden can convince Kaaya that the Miami QB job is ALL his once he steps on Campus (which we know he really can't do) and keeps Kaaya from flipping officially.

Not here to bash. This news is less than 24 hours old and most of the recruiting insiders are just getting it. Hence 247Sports projections on where Kaaya will sign.


Sorry for the news. Hope Golden can get Harris and even more so, that Ryan Williams can play QB at a high level for the Canes in 2014.

Chickalo was a 5 star. But poor coaching has made him look average at best. Doesnt matter who we sign if coaches cant coach.

Chad and Demetrius,

You won't be sorry at a fine university like Miami! Hope to cheer you guys on as Canes!

Travonte, LSU is great football, but UM offers the whole package, including the opportunity for your family to see you play. Hope your heart stays in South Florida as a Cane! We need you as our next great DT!

Go Canes!

I don't understand why this coaching staff continues to waste time and resources recruiting outside the state.

Get Golden out of here, he turning us into Penn st.

And just how is Golden turning us into Penn State, moron? Lets see, he has done a better job recruiting top talent to the university than anybody since Butch Davis was here? That doesn't sound like Penn State. He is going after every five star recruit in the area like a Chad Thomas and is bringing him in. He is recruiting top linebackers that can be both physical and fast. Oh well that doesn't sound like Penn State either. Why don't you jerkoffs that are so scared of the great job the man is doing try acknowledging that for a change and let the man do his job. And last time I checked he is doing a better job than anybody here has done in the last decade so get over yourselves and if U are a Cane be thankful that we have such a great young Head Coach.

If Golden listening to what Penn State had to say cost us Valentine then oh well then. What does he think Les Miles did just a couple of years ago with Michigan. Why it is the same thing. Imagine that a coach wins some games and all of a sudden other schools are interested in him. I know that may be too much of a juggernaut of a thought for some of your brains but this is a business. If Valentine and others would look at things from a logical standpoint if Golden did not leave for Penn State then he ain't a going to go anywhere else. Miles on the other hand has been at LSU for almost a decade now and is losing ground to Alabama and is about to be taken over by Auburn and Texas A&M, so it would just stand to reason that if the Wolverines were to come a calling should Brady Hoke not work out, that he would more than likely jump ship to Michigan. It's not rocket science, its just plain common sense. So Travonte, if you want to come and play for the U and have your name go down in Dlineman Lore amongst Gods like Warren Sapp, Jerome Brown, Cortez Kennedy, Vince Wilfork, and Russell Maryland and know who your coach will be while you are in college then come to the U and coach Golden. But if you want to just be another microwaved no-name that LSU puts out and not know for sure who your HC is going to be, then go ahead on and go to LSU. The choice is all yours but do use logic and common sense when doing so. Some mistakes you can recover from quickly, however signing with an LSU is one that no one ever recovers from.

UM gives U the best of both worlds. All U got at Lsu is a couple of So.Fla. Aquantices. At UM U have Thomas and many other So.Fla. guys that U played with and against. You are a 20 minute drive from Hialeah and your school, coaches, friends and most importantly; mom and family. They can see U play every home game. Yet you have the opportunity to be on your own, meet new friends and team mates in a great new inviroment with smaller classes and acute attention that you won't get at LSU were u go to classes with 399 of your best friends. You will get playing time immediately and be part of bringing the U back to the top.

Lets see Golden has missed on Dalvin Cook, Sony Michel, Brandon Powell, Ermon Lane and a slew of other So. FL recruits. Look at FSU's roster and tell me that Golden is doing his job recruiting Miami and the surrounding areas. He's let a lot of recruits slip through his fingers.

Bo Scarbough can change our team.

Kayaa isn't gonna play next season here and he would still have to beat Olsen. Scarborough starts as true freshman. He changes our team more than any other recruit. He should be number one priority and be promised to start.

Well has FSU had to deal with the mess Golden has? NO! Fisher was the coach in waiting and recruiting while in that capacity and he was fortunate to follow the legend that is Bowden where as Golden followed what amounts to the head coaching equivalent of Cheech and Chong in Coker and Shannon. Golden or no other coach is going to get every player in today's day and age. Most of the kids now want confirmation that they are going to be the guy rather than competing for playing time and jobs. Considering the circumstances he has had to deal with, Golden is doing a magnificent job. Just look at the past two years where he has took Tracy Howard and Stacy Coley who were considered locks from FSU. The man is doing a great job, and to see it all you have to do is look at the way we are trending recruiting wise. Each year there is a better class coming in. Quality takes time.

U dumbases! Golden cant get every good player. No way the number one two three and four rbs commits to the same school, same with qbs...same with lineman...same with corners...! Noone can get the all. Sheesh!

The excuses end with this recruiting class. Golden better lock down So. Florida recruits next year. No leakage. Period.

Mahoney, I do agree that getting Scarbourgh could change everything. I don't believe he is as big as far as team needs as Chad Thomas, but he would be a huge haul as far as our backfield and just the perception of coming to Miami. The kid is a huge talent and would probably be the number 2 back coming in and the way coach golden lets players compete for playing time, Scarbourgh could win half the first team reps with Duke.

Those aren't excuses, they are simply the reality of the situation. Golden is doing a great job and no matter what some kids are going to leave. It's mostly a product of the age we live in where a recruit now can be reached out to and seen or talked to via the internet, cell phone or just by the kids having the feeling of entitlement to playing time. Things are never going to be like it was thirty years ago when a kid from Liberty City knew nothing but Miami, but things at Miami can be much like it was in 2000 and 01 in time.


If this kid is in the backfield next season we beat FSU. If he was in the backfield last season we beat FSU.

Great decision Chad Thomas, just want to welcome you to the U. Glad to have you and your skills in the orange and green. Good luck with your music and football career while here at the U. That's what we want here. Players that are a thousand percent committed to the U of Miami, just like Duke Johnson.

Where's the clown who said Thomas was going to Alabama?

Dudes on here pledging their allegiance to a football coach while their Commander In Chief is giving his State of the Union address. Get your priorities right and be an American for once. Turn the PC off and get your butts over to local broadcasting and show some true patriotism. Support your elected leader!

Bo is a beast there is no doubt about that. To me just the perception and reality of the state of our program would be vaulted so much further along by having a young man like a Bo Scarbourgh turn down bama for the U would be huge much like the way Mr. Thomas has basically said he has done. I'm telling you Golden is really doing a great job for us real Canes fans.

Thomas wouldn't have made a big difference vs FSU. Jameis is still Jamies. Maybe in combination Valentine, Moten and Thomas help, but Scarbrough and Duke? We get 3rd and shorts. It's a different ball game. We need chain movers and ball control. That will instantly help the D.

The last time UM was dominant, these recruits were only 6 years old. That's hard to overcome. But recruiting in NJ, CA, etc. is a waste of time. Back to basics. Golden needs to blanket So. Florida. No wasted energy.

I'm not so sure that Chad or would not have last year. If you think about it, our biggest glaring weakness has been a pass rusher and that is what Chad is. I know this if we had lost Chad Thomas that would have hurt us more than losing a RB. Now it's true had we had a great number two to pick up the slack from when Duke got injured we could have finished better and perhaps won against FSU because we were never the same team without the Duke in the backfield. Golden pulls in Thomas, Moten and Valentine this is a great class, but if you add Scarborough then the class could become historic.

HTC there ain't nobody studying what those lying politicians are talking about. Check your Obama care and leave the football to us.

Suddenly all politicians are liars and the system doesn't work because your Commander in Chief is black LOL! Selective and voluntary disenfranchisement.

Golden lied a couple of weeks ago and we should be happy that he is our coach right?

Well U should be happy that U have a US president that wants to do his job and employs zero excuses. I don't have ObamaCare, but please explain to us how it has or will ever harm U?

I find it hysterical that Canes fans blame Golden for not being able to close the deal on Miami kids. The main problem is your attendance at home games is a complete embarrassment. Even if I grew up a diehard Canes fan, I'd take a long hard look at a real college football school before considering Miami. Who wants to play in front of 8,000 fans when they can play in front of 80,000 every single home game? Truth, is YOU,...yeah YOU are the problem. You can talk about your history all you want, just like the Dolphins do, but at the end of he day the smart kids will make the right business decision and go to a real college football school.

Scarbrough would make more of an impact here than he would in Alabama. He would be the perfect complement to Duke. He would take the load off Duke and making Duke more efficient and less fatigued. But how realistic is it that he would flip?

Dudes on here pledging their allegiance to a football coach while their Commander In Chief is giving his State of the Union address. Get your priorities right and be an American for once. Turn the PC off and get your butts over to local broadcasting and show some true patriotism. Support your elected leader!
Posted by: HarrietTubmanCane | January 28, 2014 at 10:21 PM

ROFL, they don't like Hussein!

said Valentine, who was wearing an LSU backback during a half hour interview at school with The Miami Herald Tuesday. "They just have to show me something."

Let's hope it's not our game footage, since these penn disgrace morons have been here!

HTC, first off, all politicians are liars and it has nothing to do with Obama being black. By the way he is half black and half white. Only fools like yourself are hung up on the race thing, which is kind of ironic since you go by that stupid name. Second Golden didn't lie about anything and he didn't bail like Butch Davis did back in 2000 either. Now Butch lied, Coach Golden did not. And lastly I haven't seen Obama do jack squat other than take his ole lady out everytime I see him on TV. And Obama Care is the epidimy of excuses. Oh wait the system is not ready at this time, or you can keep your doctor but you really can't. Now those are some excuses for your rearend right there. And while it hasn't hurt me yet or has been determined to have an negative effect on myself yet, I have never seen where the Government has done jack squat for me other than take my tax dollars and give it to some crack head who wants to make welfare a lifestyle.

Valentine said Golden's recruiting pitch Tuesday was pretty clear cut. He brought up the history Miami has had with defensive linemen, and that he wants to have the opportunity to coach another great one.

Oh boy, here we go, trying to sac ride off something he had nothing to do with, i would've respected it more if he said something along the lines of, if we got a temple d-linemen in Muhammad wilkerson to the pro's as a first round pick, with the talent we're assembling here, we'll have about 4 wilkerson's at once on the d-line.

Football people. Football.

I don't see nothing wrong with what Golden is saying which is incidently true. While it is true he had nothing to do with the prior D linemen the same could be said of any other coach who would use the same pitch to bring in talent. Calvin actually has a good point about Wilkerson and how Golden took a program that was basically at the bottom of the Ocean and made it respectable and not only that developed and young man like Wilkerson into a first round draft pick. And with the talent coming in there could be four that rival that but also the two thousand to two thousand two year teams with McDougal, Jamal Green, and Wilfork.

Valentine said Golden ended his pitch by saying: 'Let me coach you.'

This penn disgrace moron is comical, who does he think he is, ed oregon, and here's more proof for those who've been saying it for the longest that the head moron has alot to do with coaching the efense. Like this moron kept complaining about when he first got here cause he didn't understand Miami confidence, so he said "some of these guys think they'e better than what they are". I said it back than, we can apply that same statement to him and his mac minions, and now here is more clear proof "let me coach you" ROFL, we'll see if that reels him in.

First off, it's going to be real hard for any older Cane d-linemen to honestly recruit d-linemen here when they not letting them play the way they use to play. How come, against the turn-overprone gaytors(now dzp52, shayon, rayshawn they forced they're turn-overs, t howard when and got that bad throw to but)all we heard was "we brought our techniques to the game, the 2nd half of the season did our techniques disappear!

Your wasting your time talking to these clowns about these excuse making bums. As much as I want all the exceptional recruits to come to the U it's not realistic. If he wants to go some where else let him because it's not a lock that the coaches will make him better so it really doesn't matter that much. We need coaches that can get the most out of these players and they have already proven otherwise.They see these games and the coaching just like the fans do. The dc is just like bush some absolute garbage. I have no confidence that the coaches can win the big game for us or get to it for that matter. Would be great if they could prove me wrong but I will not hold my breath.

It would be useless to bring up Wilkerson because he would have to explain Jaquan Jarretts disappearance.

He is half black but American has a law still on the books and has thus created a culture of distinguishing any person with any parts African blood as black, not my doing lol! Of course U already knew that. Its not a fact that all politicians are liars either, its just a cliche used because most are. I can say that all coaches are liars if thats the case???

Like I said, U can't even explain your beef with the one policy U have an issue with him for during 6 years of employment as your Commander In Chief. He got Osama, but its all hail Golden and preaching of patience with a 49-49 record overall and 22-15 at UM. How does a person garner your loyalty?

U obviously never heard of the Indian Removal Act, or the Homestead Act, or the Naturalization Act, or the the Alien Land Laws, or the Jim Crow laws, the Social Security & Wagner Acts of 1935, or the New Deal program under the Federal Housing Administration that led to white-only home ownership for millions--tying mortgage eligibility to race.

^^Just some of the first examples of our Government use of tax dollars to support the welfare lifestyle of the early Americans ROTFL!!

Go read a book for once!

Calvin good post, the coaches refer it to freelancing. I've never heard that term used so much in one college football season than before in my ENTIRE life. Were a private school which means its tougher to get in ie higher grades, tougher admission standards etc. We must have the dumbest smart kids because how could intelligent kids freelance....all the time, or is it coaching? I choose the latter. GOOD coaches use schemes that help players succeed, they adapt to the talent they have and form a game plan and suck out every bit of ability and talent each player has. ridiculous!

Valentine said Golden's recruiting pitch Tuesday was pretty clear cut. He brought up the history Miami has had with defensive linemen, and that he wants to have the opportunity to coach another great one.
Oh boy, here we go, trying to sac ride off something he had nothing to do with, i would've respected it more if he said something along the lines of, if we got a temple d-linemen in Muhammad wilkerson to the pro's as a first round pick, with the talent we're assembling here, we'll have about 4 wilkerson's at once on the d-line.
Posted by: Calvin | January 28, 2014 at 10:47 PM


Playa you left our the best part...ROFL

......Valentine said Golden ended his pitch by saying: 'Let me coach you.'


I died!!!

He lied!!!


Valentine....u punk as* biatch.....SHOW YOU WHAT?

Girls say ship like that.....

Don't come here....YOU WILL NOT BE GOOD ENOUGH HOMIE!!!!

HTC's name is actually fitting because he is trying to free you idiots from al bundy and company.

Tallycane htc tried to help'em.

You can lead a horse to h20 but can't MAKE them drink!!

I need them to "show me something"....

What...their kak?

You queer homie?

Only girls talk like that....





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