Miami recruiting: Latest pledge strengthens ties at South Florida power
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 daily notebooks here at 6:30 p.m. ET from Sunday through Thursday and follow us on Twitter for the latest Miami recruiting news.
DE Jason Munoz’s commitment helps in variety of ways
Jason Munoz went into the spring ahead of his senior year as almost a total unknown. The 3-star strongside defensive end missed his entire junior season at St. Thomas Aquinas High School in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. The 247Sports composite rankings hold him as an unranked prospect. Only a select handful of Power 5 programs have extended an offer.
Miami thinks it may have found a gem, though. The 6-foot-4, 250-pound defensive lineman showed up in Coral Gables, Fla., on Saturday for the first Mark Richt Football Camp of June seeking an offer from the hometown team. There was no question Munoz was the top performer of the lineman drills, and the Hurricanes rewarded the senior with an offer. By the end of the day, Munoz became the 13th member of Miami’s Class of 2019, which now ranks No. 7 in the 247Sports composite rankings.
“It was just like almost surreal. I couldn’t believe it at first,” Munoz told DieHards after he announced his commitment. “I went there with the mindset of, if I come here, I do good and I get this offer, I’m committing today.”
— Jason Muñoz (@JasonMunoz_STA) June 2, 2018
Munoz’s commitment is important to the Hurricanes for a number of reasons. First and foremost, Miami is desperate for defensive linemen in the 2019 class after landing only a single blue-chip prospect at the position in the Class of 2018. While the Hurricanes don’t yet hold a blue-chip commitment in 2019, they now have three distinct prospects to anchor a still-growing group. Munoz, who could wind up at either defensive end or defensive tackle, joins 3-star weakside defensive end Cameron Williams and 3-star defensive tackle Denzel Daxon in the class.
RELATED: 2019 Miami recruiting big board
An added benefit of Munoz’s commitment is his spot on St. Thomas Aquinas’ roster. The Raiders consistently feature one of the most talented rosters in the country and Miami now holds three commitments from St. Thomas Aquinas prospects this cycle. The Hurricanes landed 4-star Raiders outside linebackers Anthony Solomon and Avery Huff earlier this spring.
Miami is still targeting quite a few prospects at St. Thomas Aquinas, including one who has a good relationship with Munoz. Braylen Ingraham, a 4-star strongside defensive end, is one of the Hurricanes’ top defensive line targets this cycle. Miami is trying to fend off Oklahoma to land the 6-4, 270-pound defensive end.
“I’d love to be able to play alongside him,” Munoz said.
Munoz, who is only ranked by 247Sports because of his lost 2017 season, gives Miami a bit of insurance should it come up short with some of its other top targets. The Hurricanes’ top true defensive tackle at this point seems to be Tyler Davis. The 4-star lineman from Wekiva High School in Apopka, Fla., visited Miami on Saturday, too, but the Hurricanes are chasing Clemson and Ohio State. Miami also recently offered Jalar Holley. The 3-star defensive tackle from Buford (Ga.) High School claimed Auburn as his leader before Miami offered.
As for other prospects like Munoz and Ingraham, Quashon Fuller is near the top of the Hurricanes list despite his Florida State pledge. The 4-star strongside defensive end from Lehigh Senior High School in Lehigh Acres, Fla., named Miami to his top 10 last month and plans to attend Paradise Camp in July. The Hurricanes also offered Colby Wooden recently and hope to make a run at the Georgia prospect. Clemson and Auburn are out front for the 3-star strongside defensive end from Archer High School in Lawrenceville, Ga.
Other more traditional defensive ends on Miami’s board include 4-star weakside defensive end Khris Bogle, 4-star junior college weakside defensive end Chester Graves and 3-star weakside defensive end Jahfari Harvey. Bogle, who plays at Cardinal Gibbons High School in Fort Lauderdale, recently named the Hurricanes to a top 2 with Tennessee. Graves, who attends Iowa Western Community College in Council Bluffs, also claims offers from Alabama and Mississippi. Harvey, meanwhile, remains somewhat under the radar at Vero Beach (Fla.) High School. Georgia Tech is one of the few other schools the defensive end has visited.
Miami makes top 7 for All-American WR John Dunmore
Miami waited so long to offer John Dunmore, it sometimes looked like the Hurricanes weren’t at all interested in the 4-star wide receiver from Chaminade-Madonna College Preparatory School in Hollywood, Fla.
On May 2, wide receivers coach Ron Dugans finally changed things. The wide receivers coach made his way to a Chaminade-Madonna College Prep practice to watch Dunmore in person. He liked what he saw and finally offered the Under Armour All-American. The Hurricanes immediately vaulted into Dunmore’s top group.
Dunmore made his thinking a bit more formal Friday. The 6-3, 180-pound receiver put out a top 7. Miami made the cut along with Florida State, Florida, Auburn, Ohio State, Penn State and Michigan.
Official Top 7 ‼️…. pic.twitter.com/wEkzACf556
— Jdsunn__ (@JohnDunmore2) June 1, 2018
Dunmore seems to be giving legitimate thought to all seven schools on his list, although he has referred to playing for the Seminoles as a dream. His mother is a big Florida State fan.
Dunmore, who de-committed from the Gators on Jan. 22, has visited all seven of the schools in his top group, including an official visit with the Wolverines the weekend of April 14. While Dunmore was in Ann Arbor with some Chaminade-Madonna teammates, 4-star athlete Te’Cory Couch committed to Michigan.
Even though the Hurricanes didn’t offer until May, Dunmore made the quick trip to Miami-Dade County before then. The wideout visited campus Feb. 21. The day he picked up the offer, Dunmore told DieHards he already had a solid relationship with Dugans.
“He’s a cool guy. We joke around,” Dunmore said. “I FaceTimed him on his birthday.”
Dunmore, whom the 247Sports composite rankings peg as the nation’s No. 107 prospect, has previously mentioned making a decision at the Under Armour All-America Game in January. The Hurricanes would like to add one more wide receiver in this class to accompany 4-star wide receiver Jeremiah Payton.
Miami hosts first Mark Richt Football Camps of 2018
Munoz was responsible for the biggest bit of news to come out of the first weekend of Mark Richt Camps, but the lasting effects will cover much more than just a single commitment. Miami offered three South Florida players, including Munoz, and hosted dozens of Division I prospects from across Florida.
The Hurricanes made their three offers Saturday. The lineman drills also yielded an offer for Savion Collins, an unranked defensive tackle in the Class of 2021 from Southwest Miami High School. On the 7-on-7 fields, 3-star Miami Southridge High School wide receiver Marcus Fleming put together a strong enough performance to land himself an offer, too.
— 3️⃣ (@_humble_3) June 2, 2018
Fleming’s offer is the more notable one for now. A top-300 prospect in the 247Sports.com rankings for the Class of 2020, Fleming told DieHards the Hurricanes shot to the top of his list. The 5-10, 165-pound receiver also holds offers from North Carolina State, Louisville, Syracuse, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Tennessee, Penn State, Indiana, Purdue, Nebraska, Central Florida, South Florida, Florida Atlantic and Florida International.
“It was exciting. I was happy,” said Fleming, who also played some cornerback Saturday. “I’ve been waiting on this for a little while now.”
On the other hand, Collins was a total unknown before Saturday. Miami is the first school to offer the 6-4, 265-pound defensive lineman. Because of his age, Collins could potentially develop into either a defensive tackle or defensive end.
Saturday brought the biggest group of talent to campus, with Miami Southridge, Miami Central High School and Doral (Fla.) Academy Preparatory School among the participating schools. Daxon and 4-star strongside defensive end Samuel Anaele, a 2020 Hurricanes commit, accompanied their Doral Academy Prep teammates even though neither participated in drills. The same went for Florida 3-star tackle commit Wardrick Wilson and 4-star wide receiver Brieon Fuller, who de-committed from Miami on April 2. Louisville is one of the new leaders for Fuller.
With Miami Central in attendance, 4-star cornerback commit Henry Gray made his return to campus. The elite 2020 prospect committed to the Hurricanes on March 31 and last visited on April 21.
Southridge, however, brought the most high-profile prospect of the day with Tyrique Stevenson. The 4-star cornerback only showed up for the afternoon, but made his presence felt with a dominant two-way performance. This was the second visit for Stevenson in less than a week after he was on campus last Sunday. Florida, Alabama, Georgia and Auburn are pushing for the former Gators commit, who returned to Miami on Sunday. The Spartans also brought 3-star outside linebacker Diamante Howard, who de-committed from the Hurricanes on March 24.
Other notable visitors without an offer from the Hurricanes included 3-star Central pro-style quarterback Maurice Underwood, 3-star Miami Northwestern Senior High School defensive tackle Calijah Kancey and 3-star strongside defensive end Josh Griffis, a 2020 Florida commit from IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla.
On Sunday, the Hurricanes hosted a handful of other Division I prospects. The most notable was probably EJ Jackson, a 3-star cornerback from Glades Central High School in Belle Glade, Fla. The lineman drills, however, were loaded with under-the-radar, unranked talent, including Miami Edison High School weakside defensive end Travon Thomas and guard Quentin Jones of Amos P. Godby High School in Tallahassee, Fla. Westley Neal, an unranked defensive tackle from Miami’s Gulliver Schools, was the top 2020 performer Sunday. Elijah Roberts, an unranked weakside defensive end from Miami’s Christopher Columbus High School, attended the camp, but did not participate in drills. The 2020 defensive end is high on the Hurricanes after picking up an offer March 31.
Miami didn’t only hand out offers to players at the camp this weekend, though. The Hurricanes expanded their board at wide receiver a bit Friday, extending an offer to Lance Wilhoite.
Blessed to receive an offer from The University of Miami pic.twitter.com/qwbKr226Pl
— Lance Wilhoite⁶𓅓 (@swaggylance) June 1, 2018
The 4-star wide receiver from Franklin Road Academy in Nashville, is the top-ranked player in Tennessee. Ohio State is out in front for the 6-3, 175-pound receiver, but Clemson, Louisville and Tennessee are also involved. Wilhoite, who also plays some strong safety, will compete at The Opening finals later in June in Frisco, Texas.
Miami G commit Kingsley Eguakun returns to Auburn
Miami may not have its center of the future locked up just yet. Kingsley Eguakun, whom the Hurricanes hope can one day anchor the center of their offensive line, is still giving one more school a real chance to flip him.
Auburn hosted some of its biggest recruiting days of the spring Saturday and Sunday with Big Cat Weekend, and Eguakun made the trip to Alabama from Jacksonville. The visit to Auburn was Eguakun’s second since the start of the year after the 3-star guard took his first trip March 3.
Miami OL commit returns for his second visit this spring. https://t.co/QN3OC0vImf
— Benjamin Wolk (@benjaminwolk) June 2, 2018
The good news for Miami after this latest visit is Eguakun isn’t considering any other schools. The 6-4, 294-pound offensive lineman from Atlantic Coast High School told SEC Country’s Benjamin Wolk he’s only considering the Hurricanes and Auburn. He’s still firmly committed to Miami, although he admits Auburn is giving him “something to think about.”
Eguakun, who is capable of playing both guard and center, committed to the Hurricanes on Jan. 12. He last visited campus March 24 for junior day, when he actively recruited Michael Tarquin. The 4-star tackle from Belleview (Fla.) High School wound up committing April 21.
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