Miami Football: Summer Grades for 2015 Recruiting Class

David KenyonFeatured ColumnistMay 19, 2014

Before hectic summer months officially begin for class of 2015 recruits, it's a perfect time to hand out positional grades for the Miami Hurricanes' current haul.

According to 247Sports, head coach Al Golden and his coaching staff have amassed the No. 12 unit in the nation, including the third-best in the Atlantic Coast Conference.

Miami's 11-man, offense-heavy group is highlighted by a pair of gifted in-state running backs, and the top defensive pledge is a legacy player.

Level of need, committed talent and how much a positional unit can be upgraded are main factors in deciding a given grade.



The newest commitment as of this writing, 4-star Dwayne Lawson is the lone quarterback in Miami's class. Lawson hails from the same school that produced defensive tackle Earl Moore, Tampa-area Hillsborough High.

As a junior in 2013, Lawson completed 52.5 percent of his passes for 2,120 yards, 22 touchdowns and just six interceptions. The 6'5" gunslinger also added 1,068 yards and nine scores on the ground.

The 'Canes are content with Lawson, but they'll save room for Torrance Gibson—however unlikely it may be to convince the local 5-star to stay home.

Grade: B


Running Back

Dexter Williams committing to Miami was a bit of a surprise, and his skill set in the backfield is on the verge of elite. With that being said, Williams is being contacted by the likes of Florida, Michigan, Ohio State and Notre Dame, and it won't be easy to keep his pledge.

Jordan Cronkrite was added to the class about a week after Williams, but the 4-star winding up at "The U" is a pretty safe bet. Per David Lake of 247Sports (subscription required), Cronkite is very strong in his commitment to Al Golden and Co.

There's certainly some room to add more players, but the 'Canes are off to a great start at running back.

Grade: A-


Wide Receiver and Tight End

One of the earliest commitments, wide receiver Emonee Spence has snagged 80 passes for 815 yards and 10 touchdowns over the last two seasons. Lake (subscription required) notes the 6'2" wideout is focusing on route running and attacking cornerbacks this offseason, trying to become a more aggressive receiver.

Tight end Bowman Archibald gave his pledge to Miami in March, and he is definitely the flier in the class. Archibald's numbers from his junior season (eight receptions, 134 yards, two touchdowns) are far from gaudy.

Miami will lose Clive Walford and Beau Sandland after the 2014 season, however, so adding Archibald addresses the impending depth issue.

Considering the Hurricanes are holding out for names such as Calvin Ridley, Devonaire Clarington, Deon Cain and Devante Peete, the lack of commitments is not a sign of worry just yet.

Grade: C-


Offensive Linemen

In 2014, Miami signed Kc McDermott, Trevor Darling and Nick Linder, easing the necessity on targeting offensive linemen during a skill-position-heavy class. Of course, it didn't stop the 'Canes from adding some more bulk.

A 6'9" tackle from Golden's home state of New Jersey, Kevin Feder was the first to announce his collegiate intentions. He will play as a junior at the earliest, so O-line coach Art Kehoe has plenty of time to refine Feder's technique.

Surprisingly enough for a 3-star in South Florida, Leeward Brown is considered one of the better prospects at his position in the talent-rich area. Given his 338-pound stature, Brown projects as a guard at the next level, which Miami will be needing in a couple of years.

Golden reached back into the Northeast and plucked 3-star tackle Hayden Mahoney, who committed during a visit to the campus in late March, from Pennsylvania.

Even if the Hurricanes do not bring in another lineman, given the current depth, the trio would be a respectable haul.

Grade: B


Defensive Linemen

Scott Patchan, whose father played at Miami in the mid-1980s, pledged to Golden on the same day as Williams. In 2013, the 3-star registered 56 tackles (24 for loss, 8.5 sacks) as a defensive end.

At 6'4" and 295 pounds, defensive tackle Ryan Fines has the frame to become a prototypical-sized interior lineman during his college years.

Though Quentez Johnson spent only 10 days before decommitting in early May, the 'Canes are not backing off the defensive tackle. Granted, The U has already dropped to No. 2 on his list, per Ryan Callahan of 247Sports (subscription required).

California 4-star Khalil McKenzie represents the top remaining target, but 4-star Joseph Wicker and 3-star Elijah Taylor are other priorities.

Like the offensive line, the Miami coaching staff did a great job with the 2014 haul, so more attention can be given elsewhere this year.

Grade: B-



Had Raphael Kirby, Alex Figueroa and Jermaine Grace not stepped up this spring, linebacker would be an extreme position of need in 2015. However, consequent to their collective emergence, the Hurricanes will not be forced to reach for linebackers in a thin talent pool.

The first commit for the current class by nearly six months, 3-star athlete Charles Perry is approaching one calendar year as a prospective Hurricane. Last season, Perry tallied 78 tackles, seven sacks and one interception that he returned for a touchdown.

Miami should be looking into grabbing a commitment from one more linebacker, and bringing in any of Sh'mar Kilby-Lane, Tevon Coney and Dominic Sheppard would be a solid boost to the position.

Grade: C+



Currently, the Hurricanes do not hold any commitments from prospects who play in the secondary, but there is a collection of skilled defensive backs they are targeting.

Jaquan Johnson, Tim Irvin, Tyrek Cole and Shawn Burgess-Becker are just a handful of players to keep a close eye on throughout the summer workouts and camps.

Grade: Incomplete


Note: All recruit information courtesy of 247Sports. Star ratings reflect 247Sports Composite Rankings.

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


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