I have a few self-imposed rules about what I post on social media. They include no prospective recruiting comments and no prospective coaching comments in relation to UM. However, that doesn’t keep me from commenting on past recruiting.
I’ve witnessed plenty of National Signing Day drama through the years, shooting exclusively for Canesport every year since 1996. What has changed in those 16 years is kids are learning to take advantage of their initial 15 minutes of fame and play to the media with dramatics better suited for acting school. For some, it’ll be the only 15 minutes they’ll ever get.
Therefore, don’t sweat the ones that get away, because more often than not, we don’t hear much about them afterwards. I present these three examples I’ve witnessed firsthand:
Kayvon Webster, DB, Pace HS, 2009 NSD.
Dressed with a USF hoodie and a Miami tie on the outside, Webster sat down with two of his classmates and placed a Miami and USF hat in front of him on the table. Webster then flipped the Miami hat behind him, put on the USF hat and then tucked in his Miami tie under the USF hoodie.
In three years at USF he has a grand total of two interceptions, although he does have a 96-yard fumble return for a touchdown on his resume.
Deonte Thompson, WR, Glades Central HS, 2007 NSD.
Thompson also chose to dramatize his moment for the cameras. He had been wearing Miami gear and downplaying Florida before he appeared for the media with offers from UM, UF, USC & Ohio State on the table in front of him. No one, except his family, saw what was coming, the shocking reveal of Gator hats for he and his girlfriend.
Thompson had only one 100 yard receiving game in four years at UF, and even that was against a Division 1-AA opponent.
Jonathan Colon, OL, Miami Central HS, 2000 NSD.
Colon’s story is in a league of its own, and might be one of the all-time bizzare NSD stories.
Torn and conflicted, Colon was near tears as he signed with Florida on NSD in front of the media and his very unhappy father, who wanted him to go to Miami. But a signed Letter Of Intent also showed up on Miami’s fax machine that day. Colon had signed with both schools.
While UF and UM haggled over where Colon belonged, the NCAA spent a week sorting through the mess before finally making the ruling Colon belonged to the Gators, as he had signed his Miami LOI the night before signing day – making it invalid.
Ironically, Colon ended up at Bridgton Academy in Maine in the fall of 2000 and re-signed with the Gators on NSD in 2001.
Colon started only 22 of 43 games during his career with the Gators.
The Hurricanes signed 28 high school recruits as part of the 2010 signing class yesterday, including three from Ft. Lauderdale’s St. Thomas Aquinas High School: Brandon Linder, Keion Payne and Jermaine Barton.
UM’s class was ranked 13th by ESPN, 13th by Scout.com, 21st by MaxPreps and 24th by Rivals.com.
You can see the entire list of ‘Canes signees here.
Today is National Signing Day, or National Letter of Intent day. Now held on the first Wednesday each February, it is the first day a high school senior can sign a binding National Letter of Intent for college sports.
I’ve covered fifteen of these days for Canesport, and I’ve seen at all. I’ve seen a kid sign with two schools and a kid walk away from the table and not sign with anyone. There are kids who made up their mind long before this day (like Davon Johnson, above) and kids who play to the media with dramatics better suited for acting school.
Today, I’m scheduled to attend David Perry’s signing at University School in Davie, Johnathan Feliciano’s signing at Western High School in Davie, and Jermaine Barton, Keion Payne and Brandon Linder’s signing at St. Thomas High School in Ft. Lauderdale.
Hopefully, I’ll avoid the reality show that was Kayvon Webster’s signing at Pace Monsignor High School last year.