It appears as if the Miami Hurricanes have become a major player in the recruiting race for 5-star running back Derrick Green.
Green has a pretty impressive interest list that includes Tennessee, Michigan, Auburn, Oregon, USC, Florida State and the aforementioned Miami. The Volunteers, Wolverines and Tigers have all received official visits from the 5-star running back.
While Tennessee, Michigan and Auburn would seem to have an (unofficial) advantage, Matt Shodell of CaneSport.com is reporting that the Hurricanes are getting some major consideration:
Richmond (VA) Hermitage High School's Derrick Green is the nation's top-ranked running back.
And he says "I am definitely considering Miami."
Green goes on to say that he's planning on taking an official to Miami, and he talks a bit about the Hurricanes pitch, per Shodell's report:
Coach Terry Richardson is recruiting him to Miami.
"He tells me it's an opportunity for me to come in there and get immediate playing time, that it's a good program," Green said. "He said if I come in and work hard and get at it I can get playing time."
He adds of UM that "Miami puts players in the NFL, does a lot of good things. I know it's a very good program, good academics."
At this point, it appears is if Miami is a viable option for Green, and that's not good news for the rest of the programs on his interest list—specifically Auburn and Michigan.
Where will Green end up?
Those two programs have been the two most interesting programs on Green's list (Michigan is a premier program looking to transition to the pro-style offense, and Auburn football has been rejuvenated by new head coach Gus Malzahn), and Green even went as far to say that Michigan had the edge for his commitment in an interview with Mike Farrell of Rivals.com a few weeks ago.
While it's still safe to say that the Wolverines, and even Auburn, still have a good chance to land the 5-star running back, it's impossible to ignore that Miami has now become a legitimate threat to those chances.
Miami isn't the program it once was, but Al Golden is a good recruiter and the program can quickly become a competitive power in the ACC again. Also, if the Hurricanes can land Green, he could become part of an incredible backfield duo with current star running back Duke Johnson.
Johnson rushed for 947 yards and 10 touchdowns and returned two kicks for touchdowns this season. He also notched one receiving touchdown, finishing the year with 13 total as a true freshman.
He and Green could form arguably one of the most potent rushing attacks in college football, and that has to be a pretty appealing thought for the 5-star running back recruit. The hype that a potential commitment to Miami would create would be incredible.
Green would be a marquee recruit that would draw a ton of attention to Miami and he has the intangibles to be a star for the Hurricanes.
It's in no way a lock, and I'd still consider Michigan and even Auburn to be the front-runners, but there's no doubting the fact that Miami is now a real threat to their chances of landing the 5-star running back.