Miami recruiting: Hurricanes capitalize on Miami Nights with commitment
Miami is on its way to one of the best recruiting classes in the nation. David Wilson and the DieHards.com team are in the eye of the storm to help you track the Hurricanes. Read his daily notebooks here at 6:30 p.m. ET from Sunday through Thursday and follow us on Twitter for the latest Miami recruiting news.
Miami keeps up momentum with DE Jahfari Harvey‘s pledge
There’s still a sense Jahfari Harvey is one of the most underrated prospects in Florida. The 3-star weakside defensive end from Vero Beach High School now claims more than 21 offers, and it feels like it’s just the start. Half a dozen schools from Power 5 Conferences offered Harvey in May, and he’s considered far and away the top prospect on the Treasure Coast.
Harvey easily could’ve taken time with his recruitment. He’s visited a pair of ACC teams. He had his eye on a Michigan visit after the Wolverines offered May 21. Still, the defensive end is ready to shut things down. On Wednesday, Treasure Coast Newspapers in Stuart, Fla., posted a first-person essay by Harvey. The 6-foot-3, 224-pound senior was ready to announce his commitment to Miami.
— fari👹 (@jahfariharvey) June 20, 2018
Harvey’s commitment comes on the heels of Miami Nights, an invitation-only dinner Hurricanes coaches invited Harvey to Saturday. The Hurricanes’ recruitment of the edge rusher tracks much further back, though. Miami offered Harvey on Jan. 29, long before he started to draw serious national attention. At the time, Syracuse was the only other Power 5 program with an offer on the table for Harvey.
“They were my fourth offer,” Harvey told DieHards. “It was pretty important; they had confidence in me early.”
Miami Nights, however, was a chance for the Hurricanes to prove just how serious their interest was in Harvey. The No. 652 overall prospect in the 247Sports composite rankings for the Class of 2019, Harvey is still somewhat under the radar. Miami has bigger names on its board at defensive end, including some who also spent Saturday in Coral Gables. The invitation, though, proved how badly the Hurricanes wanted him.
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Harvey, who also plays outside linebacker, visited Miami for its junior day March 24. The trip marked the first time Harvey visited a school from which he held an offer. He had checked out a couple of others — North Carolina State and Georgia Tech, both of which were finalists — but the Hurricanes always made him feel like a priority.
“It felt like home,” Harvey said. “I felt like I fit in with the coaches and the attitude that they’ve got there. It just felt like home, like family.”
Miami is desperate for defensive linemen this cycle, and Harvey fills a major need without the Hurricanes needing to look too far. Harvey joins 3-star weakside defensive end Cameron Williams and 3-star strongside defensive end Jason Munoz as defensive ends this cycle, although Munoz projects best as a defensive tackle to go with 3-star defensive tackle Denzel Daxon.
The Hurricanes would be happy to wind up with the group of defensive linemen who attended Miami Nights on Saturday. Harvey, Williams and Munoz were there, as were 4-star weakside defensive end Khris Bogle, and 4-star strongside defensive ends Braylen Ingraham and Mike Morris, who is committed to Florida State. Bogle and Ingraham, in particular, are major targets the Hurricanes feel good about, although Ingraham is also high on Oklahoma. Quashon Fuller, another 4-star strongside defensive end committed to the Seminoles, is Miami’s other top defensive end target, and he visited earlier in the day Saturday.
Harvey’s commitment means the Hurricanes can keep taking shots at some of their top targets while still feeling good about their depth. Chester Graves, a 4-star junior college weakside defensive end, also could be in play, along with 3-star strongside defensive end Colby Wooden.
Even just landing Bogle, though, would give Miami a strong group on the edge. The Hurricanes can shift most of their focus to defensive tackle targets, which realistically include Ingraham, Fuller and Morris. Tyler Davis is the big fish left for the Hurricanes, and the 4-star defensive tackle visited Miami in June.
If Davis winds up picking Clemson or Ohio State, which seems likely for now, then the Hurricanes probably will turn to Jalar Holley. The 3-star defensive tackle plays for Buford (Ga.) High School, where Miami defensive line coach Jess Simpson is the former coach. Holley plans to visit for Paradise Camp on July 28.
S Jordan Battle officially visits Ohio State on commitment watch
Arguably the most important weekend of Jordan Battle’s recruitment is here. The 4-star safety from in-state St. Thomas Aquinas High School in Fort Lauderdale has called Ohio State the leader throughout much of his process, and he’ll get his most thorough look at Columbus this weekend. The 6-1, 187-pound defensive back is heading on his official visit.
Battle’s recruitment is starting to look like a two-team battle. The Opening finalist took his first official visit to Miami last weekend, making him something of an exception for the Hurricanes’ recruiting strategy this spring and summer. Miami originally didn’t want to host official visitors until the fall but made exceptions for its most elite targets. Battle, apparently, lifted himself into that category ahead of his senior year.
The Hurricanes clearly are in the No. 2 spot behind the Buckeyes and will have an easier time hosting Battle between now and National Signing Day. If the senior leaves Ohio uncommitted, Miami will like its chances to keep chipping away — especially because Battle can’t sign early and enroll early.
The Hurricanes probably won’t give up on Battle even if he commits to Ohio State, either. A return trip from the South Florida prospect could be in play for Paradise Camp on July 28.
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