Miami Football: Canes' Top 5 Current Verbal Commits
With just under a week remaining before signing day (Feb. 6), the Hurricanes have received verbal commits from 13 players. Of those 13 recruits, two of them (Sunny Odogwu and Alex Figueroa) are already enrolled in school.
According to the SunSentinel, Beau Sandland and Standish Dobard are enrolling early as well, but have not been confirmed that they are at school now. Until the rest of the players sign their Letter of Intent, they are not officially Miami Hurricanes.
So, I decided to rank the top five current verbal commits in terms of team needs, and the probability of seeing a lot of playing time this upcoming season.
No. 5: Ufomba Kamalu, DT
I will be the first to admit that I know little about Ufomba Kamalu—but from what I have read, I am really excited to see him play.
The junior college transfer has already played against college competition and should immediately compete for playing time on a very questionable Hurricanes defensive line.
Kamalu is a terrific run-stopper and has the body (6'6", 280 pounds) to plug holes at defensive tackle. He will need to work on his speed and quickness, but has the strength to be an immediate contributor.
As we all know, the defensive tackles were out-right horrible last year, and having a player such as Kamalu who has experience outside of high school, will be extremely helpful.
No. 4: Jamal Carter, S
I have seen plenty of tapes of Jamal Carter and I cannot wait to see him in orange and green. Carter is a physically gifted athlete with great field speed and tremendous quickness.
He is listed as an "athlete" on ESPN.com but will no doubt play beside Deon Bush at safety. Besides Bush, the Hurricanes don't have an extremely talented safety.
A.J. Highsmith and Kacey Rodgers made a majority of the starts last season at safety, but could be eventually beaten out by the athletic Carter sometime during the season.
Don't get me wrong, Carter still needs to hone his skills at the safety position and work on his body (6'1", 190 pounds), but once he does, watch out.
This kid could be the next great safety out of Miami.
No. 3: Beau Sandland, TE
Out of all the videos I watched of this upcoming recruiting class, no one's jumped out at me more than tight end Beau Sandland.
I know it was against weak community college competition, but it was still impressive to watch. He is such a dangerous weapon because he has good speed and can catch anything you throw at him. What makes him even more dangerous is the fact that he seems impossible to take down after the catch.
He reminds me of another college-transfer kid, Jeremy Shockey—minus the attitude.
I believe Sandland is better then Standish Dobord—another 2013 tight end recruit—and will compete with Clive Walford all season long.
No. 2: Artie Burns, CB
Besides the defensive line, there is no bigger question mark than cornerback, so snagging Artie Burns was vital. The Hurricanes lost Brandon McGee to graduation and backup corner Thomas Finnie left the team, so Burns should be able to be an immediate impact to the depleted position.
I expect Tracy Howard to snag one of the starting corner positions this upcoming year, and will go out and say that I see Burns snagging the other one sometime this season.
Burns is an extremely fast corner who tends to be all over the field, all the time. He never gives up on plays and has enough closing speed to dominate the next level.
No. 1: Al-Quadin Muhammad
The biggest pickup so far this recruiting season is defensive end/linebacker Al-Quadin Muhammad. The New Jersey prospect had the opportunity to play at Alabama, but head coach Al Golden was able to snatch him up.
Muhammad is a very talented player off the edge and will immediately see playing time on the defensive line. Although he played a lot of linebacker, I just don't see him needed at that position.
The Hurricanes defensive line was a mess last year, and picking up Muhammad was a dream come true to many.