Miami Football Recruiting: Hurricanes' Top 5 Remaining Targets
Matthew Thomas and Denver Kirkland via 247sports.
The coaches of the Miami Hurricanes football team are targeting a few highly-touted prospects who would wrap up a small 2013 class in style.
Because the size of this year's haul will be fewer than 20 players, head coach Al Golden and his staff, including new tight ends coach Mario Cristobal, are carefully pursuing recruits who fit the team's needs.
With other targets committing to schools around the nation, Golden's list is shrinking—but not disappearing.
Each five of the listed players hail from the "State of Miami," and with only two committed recruits in the South Florida area, their commitments would be important statements to colleges around the nation as well.
Here are the Hurricanes' top five remaining targets.
Matthew Thomas, LB
A consensus 5-star recruit, Booker T. Washington (Miami) High School standout Matthew Thomas could be the prized recruit to any class.
For Miami, however, he is undoubtedly the must-have recruit in 2013.
While Thomas may not start immediately for the Canes, he will likely see plenty of playing time as a freshman if he chooses to stay home in Miami.
Florida State and Alabama are currently the biggest threats in pursuit of Thomas, while Georgia and USC should not be overlooked.
Although Thomas' 247sports recruit profile does not list an official visit to Coral Gables, he lives near the Miami campus and has visited many times.
Behind a paywall, Rivals.com reports that he will take an unofficial visit to Miami on January 23, when the Canes' basketball team takes on the Duke Blue Devils.
Alex Collins, RB
With senior leader Mike James graduating, the Hurricanes could use a stud to fill his shoes.
Look no further than 4- or 5-star Alex Collins for the answer.
The running back from Fort Lauderdale has the potential to form a deadly combination with phenom Duke Johnson in the near future.
247sports reports Collins will be on campus for Miami's biggest recruiting weekend of the year before taking an official visit to Arkansas.
Denver Kirkland, OL
Denver Kirkland is a big, bad man.
If you want proof, check out the first 20 seconds of his highlight video.
The 6'5", 330-pound teammate of Matthew Thomas would add even more depth—and size—to an experienced offensive line.
Kirkland will also be on campus for the important recruiting weekend according to 247sports.
This will likely be a race between Miami and Florida State for the 4-star's services.
Stacy Coley, WR
One player whose recruitment has been hard to predict is wide receiver standout Stacy Coley.
Another top prospect from Fort Lauderdale, Coley has already taken his official visit to Miami and "had a great time" according to 247sports.
The Canes boast loads of receiver depth yet only one senior—Allen Hurns—will see significant playing time in 2013.
Miami did, however, lose the commitment of Angelo Jean-Louis for the second consecutive season due to academic issues.
Coley would replace Jean-Louis with his top-notch receiving ability and dynamic return skills.
Florida State is the school to watch out for in the race for for Coley.
Jordan Cunningham, WR
I won't call Jordan Cunningham a backup plan, but I won't say he is the top receiver target, either.
The Hurricanes would likely be happy with either Coley or Cunningham to replace Jean-Louis in this class.
Like Matthew Thomas, Cunningham does not report an official visit to Miami.
But again, not to worry. His 247sports profile shows eight—yes, eight—unofficial visits to Coral Gables.
The Hurricanes are in a solid position to land another top Fort Lauderdale recruit while Stanford and Vanderbilt seem to poise the biggest threat.