Notre Dame added one of the best wide receivers in the class of 2015 after securing the commitment of Miles Boykin on Wednesday.
Boykin tweeted the news himself:
Many college football fans had been waiting with bated breath to hear Boykin's decision. Just a few days ago, he tweeted out that he would be revealing his decision on Wednesday night:
Will be committing on Wednesday july 2nd at 7:00pm!— miles boykin (@MBoykin814) June 30, 2014
Then on Tuesday, he teased fans on social media by revealing that he was heading out to buy a hat for his commitment ceremony:
Headed to the mall to pick out the hat for tomorrow.... #?????— miles boykin (@MBoykin814) July 1, 2014
Although Boykin had narrowed his choices to 10 schools, Bleacher Report's Tyler Donahue believed that Notre Dame was the firm favorite:
4-star WR Miles Boykin says he'll commit Wednesday. Viewed as a Notre Dame lean. Michigan State, Missouri, Florida and Michigan also in mix.— Tyler Donohue (@TDsTake) June 30, 2014
247Sports lists Boykin as a wide receiver/tight end, but he's almost certainly going to be a wideout right away at the college level. The website ranks him 23rd in its composite rankings at the position and has him as the second-best prospect coming out of Illinois.
At 6'4" and 220 pounds, he has the body of a tight end but the speed and agility a team looks for in a possession receiver in the passing game.
Boykin is fast, running the 40-yard dash in 4.41 seconds per his 247Sports profile page. He may not be the kind of receiver who is going to beat a lot of secondaries over the top once he continues to fill out his frame, but he'll break his share of big plays. Most of his damage will come in the middle of the field, though.
What he lacks in explosiveness, he more than makes up for with strength and power: Boykin can outmuscle opposing defensive backs. That will come in handy when corners try to press him at the line of scrimmage. Boykin still needs to work on his technique, but at the very least, he has the physical tools to avoid getting jammed.
With his height, he doesn't need to be a high leaper in order to outjump defenders, either. Early on, he'll at least have value inside the red zone.
Down the line, Boykin could transition to tight end and be an Eric Ebron-like hybrid. In order to do that, though, he'll have to bulk up quite a bit, which would rob him of some of his speed. Still, he'd be more than fast enough to create mismatches inside against linebackers and safeties.
Perhaps a move to tight end might be the best thing for both parties since versatile, athletic players at the position are harder to come by than possession-based wide receivers.
Whether it's at wideout or tight end, Boykin should grow into a reliable pass-catcher. He's not going to be one of the most exciting playmakers, but his consistency will make him a valuable piece on offense.