Miami Football: 5 Recruits Hurricanes Must Land on NSD 2014

David KenyonFeatured ColumnistJanuary 7, 2014

Chad Thomas via 247Sports
Chad Thomas via 247Sports247Sports

The Miami Hurricanes' coaching staff has assembled a very talented class during the 2014 recruiting cycle, and landing those players on national signing day is essential.

Currently, the 'Canes class has 27 verbal commitments and one signee, but some of these prospects will officially become student-athletes very soon. Matt Porter of the Palm Beach Post notes big-name Miami commits are enrolling early and will arrive on campus during the first week of January.

But for those players who must wait until signing day on Feb. 5, opposing coaching staffs—like Miami's will do as well—utilize the "open season," even on committed recruits.

Remember, a prospect's commitment is only official when the national letter of intent slowly comes through the fax machine.


The '100 Percent Committed' Crew

Recent buzz in the recruiting realm does not have many top-tier prospects trending the Hurricanes' way.

However, that is not necessarily a bad thing.

Miami already has pledges from a collection of 4-stars who will enroll this summer, including defensive end Chad Thomas, safety Kiy Hester and quarterback Brad Kaaya.

Thomas, who is expected to be an immediate contributor, was expected to take visits to Alabama, Florida State and LSU, but he may no longer take the trips.

Might as well end the process, I'm good with the 🙌.

— TouchMoney99 (@F5_Chad) January 2, 2014

Hester also took to Twitter, attempting to calm down an oft-raucous Miami crowd on the popular social media site.

100% committed to the U stop asking me lol

— #⃣2⃣ (@Hester_2k) January 5, 2014

Kaaya, a 6'4" pro-style gunslinger from California, is expected to compete with redshirt freshman Kevin Olsen as the 'Canes quarterback of the future.

Though just one of the 11 predictors on the 247Sports' Crystal Ball expect Kaaya to make the trek to Coral Gables, Fla., he recently affirmed his commitment via Chris Hays of the Orlando Sentinel.

Again, verbal commitments are great, and it's not accusing the kids of being dishonest, but nothing is official until the LOI is signed and submitted. Beyond the early enrollments, the three players are among the most important Golden must land on signing day. 


David Njoku

247 Sports


The Hurricanes do hold commitments from Braxton Berrios, Darrell Langham, Tyre Brady and Trayone Gray, but Miami needs to add more depth at receiver.

Following the 2014 season, Phillip Dorsett and Rashawn Scott will graduate, and the top pass-catchers remaining will be Stacy Coley, Malcolm Lewis and Herb Waters. But after the trio, the 'Canes will be reliant on this class for production.

David Njoku, a 3-star wideout from new Jersey, caught 70 passes for 1,692 yards and 18 touchdowns during his final two high school seasons.

Njoku has already taken his official visit to Miami, and according to Nate Adelson of 247Sports (subscription required), current linebacker commit Juwon Young was trying to persuade Njoku.

He may not be the highest-profile recruit, but Njoku would already be the second-tallest receiver, providing the 'Canes with a red-zone threat.


Travonte Valentine


Amid the Golden to Penn State discussions, 4-star defensive tackle Travonte Valentine decommitted from Miami.

Considering the lack of production of the D-line in important games, losing the 6'3", 338-pound behemoth was a significant loss to the 'Canes.

With that being said, the door is not closed on Valentine shunning LSU, his new leader, and re-committing to Miami.

Per Manny Navarro of The Miami Herald, Valentine and his coach would like to sit down with Golden to "make sure everyone is on the same page."

Barring a completely unforeseen commitment, getting Valentine back into the fold will be the 'Canes biggest win of the recruiting season.


Recruiting information via

Follow Bleacher Report CFB Writer David Kenyon on Twitter @Kenyon19_BR.


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