Miami's 2014 recruiting class added another star-studded item Saturday with the commitment of 4-star receiver Braxton Berrios.
Berrios, generously listed at 5'10", 181 pounds by the school's roster, has been a four-year starter at five different positions at Leesville.
He recorded the fastest 20-yard shuttle time in the country (3.81 seconds) during July combine The Opening and also placed highly with a 4.48-second 40-yard dash. He's also drawn rave reviews, from Deion Sanders to the USA Today—which labeled him "the next Wes Welker"—and is set to finish high school in the top 10 percent of his class academically.
"The education is great. The City of Coral Gables is great. The coaching staff is great. The football team is great," said Berrios after his announcement early Saturday afternoon. "For 'The U', it was more a 'Why not?' than a 'Why?'"
Berrios picked Miami over Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee and Kentucky, the four other colleges in his top five. That's a major accomplishment for Hurricanes coach Al Golden, given Miami's record in recent years compared to that of the Ducks and Gamecocks.
"You try not to look into the past too much," he said. "This year [the 'Canes] are undefeated, ranked 13th in the country. I truly believe they're back."
See Berrios' high school highlights and offensive stats, which included frequent time at quarterback, running back and wide receiver, below:
|Season||Rushing Yards||Receiving Yards||Passing Yards||Total TDs|
The 18-year-old joins Miami Central's Joseph Yearby, running back, as the Hurricanes' only other skill position recruit of their 12 highly-touted commitments. Berrios is expected to take on a slot receiver role that could lend him significant playing time as early as next fall—he plans to graduate from high school in January and enroll in time for Miami's spring camp.
For Al Golden, who was, according to Berrios, "extremely excited" to hear of Saturday's news, the addition continues to cement his reputation as one of the fastest-rising recruiting geniuses of college football.
Miami is now tied with Tennessee for the nationwide lead with 26 total commitments. Five-star offensive tackle KC McDermott (West Palm Beach, FL) has headlined the group since April, but fellow linemen Travonte Valentine (Hialeah, FL), Chad Thomas (Miami, FL) and Trevor Darling (Miami, FL) along with OLB Darrion Owens (Orange Park, FL), ATH Brad Kaaya (West Hills, CA), Yearby and Berrios also add tremendous star potential to the collection.
This particular weekend belonged almost solely to Berrios, though. "I'm hoping to go in freshman year," he said, "and make an impact and do whatever they tell me to do: work, get better, and hopefully win a ring."
"I felt like Miami was...a great four-year decision for me."