Tomahawk Nation has been blowing up recently thanks to TrueCubbie's amazing basketball work and some great fanposts. We really have a solid community of members here and I like the direction of the site. I was going to do a big "looking back" piece, but I've decided not to do that.
I need people to volunteer for "Senior Sendoffs", where we profile each departing senior, discuss their contributions and legacy. Maybe we will try to find out their future plans.
The entire Seminole Nation is waiting for Chuck Amato's firing and of course, the NCAA ruling (which we have sent in our public records request for and will break down for you). Until those things happen (or maybe don't happen), the football stuff is sort of a mute point. I'm working on some more original content, but I feel like we'll know much more about our situation in another week or so. At that point, I can more narrowly mold my analysis to the appropriate situation.
As for today, however, this is the final open recruiting Wednesday of the year. As you probably know, we've partnered with Luke Stampini of SoFlaFootball.com in an effort to bring you more information on prospects from South Florida, the most fertile recruiting ground in America.
Our Q&A is inside, but of course, you are free to discuss any recruiting stuff you see fit.
Also... let's put together all the recruiting rumors and info from the last 10 days.
I asked Luke about his thoughts on the major recruiting service's ratings of South Florida players. Remember to visit www.SoFlaFootball.com
Archbishop Carroll's Rodney Smith has been slotted as the 62nd best prospect in the nation by Rivals.com. I think Smith is extremely talented and everyone loves his height. He does run very well for a kid his size, but it does take him some time to get to his top end speed (as is the case with most tall WR not named Randy Moss). With everything he brings to the field, I'm still not sure he should be ranked that high in the nation. Top 150 sure, sneaking into the top 100 I can buy that also, but 62nd seems a bit much. I do question the speed and talent he faces most of the season. Gulliver Prep, Monsignor Pace, and Bolles are the only schools he faced that have legitimate D1 prospects sprinkled across the field.
On the flip side coming in at #60 is Terry Hawthorne from East St. Louis (IL), who I've seen a couple times on TV and originally being from Illinois myself, know what kind of competition (or lack there of) he is facing. I question if Hawthorne would even be in the top 10 wide receivers in South Florida for 2009 (I will see for myself in Orlando this week). So I do think there are flaws in their rankings and I bet Miramar QB Eugene Smith (WVU commit) would agree.
These rankings are released for this exact reason right here, for fans to argue. I believe some other kids in Florida, specifically South Florida are overlooked. Great thing for Rodney, he is one that hasn't been overlooked.
Very refreshing to see a South Florida guy critically evaluate one of his area's own prospects. I like Smith a lot. He's looks like a smoother Greg Carr. Next week I'll ask Luke about the really late breaking SoFla kids.
Henry Orelus at Glades Central is probably right where he should be in the rankings. He is a center, so that's a plus, but at 6'2" that's about all he can play (guard MAYBE). He put on a little too much bad weight after injuring his wrist last season. Missing spring ball and some of the summer started pushing him towards the sloppy side. FSU coaches will get rid of that quickly though, and I think Orelus will turn into the anchor of the O-line given some time.j
Apparently Orelus knows he has the potential to get lazy and that is why he chose Rick Trickett. I hope Orelus works hard this summer. Expect Rodney Hudson to take Mcmahon's center spot and for one of the younger guys to take his left guard position. McMahon can provide Drew-style leadership from the sidelines, hopefully. Breaking into full-scale management mode here: if Hudson take's Mcmahon's spot, I hope McMahon doesn't stay on, as it will free up a scholarship.
Xavier Rhodes at Miami Norland is an odd prospect. He excelled in the largest classification in arguably the most talented county in the nation, but where is he going to play in college? The early rumblings of a cornerback are ludicrous. I don't think he's explosive enough to be an effective wide receiver at the next level. He is a football player for sure, so get him on campus and then figure it out. I'm thinking linebacker maybe?
I could see him at safety, but I don't want him as a linebacker.
I did get a chance to see Vero's Bryan Stork against Pahokee this fall, another kid that you are not sure where he will play in college. I think it is apparent that adding weight and moving to the offensive line is what will happen. Following a red shirt year it will become clearer where along the line he will move.
Stork will likely greyshirt in '09 and then Redshirt in 2010, in order to add bulk to become a center (or possibly a tackle if he grew a bunch)