So here we are, late January. National Signing Day happens on February 5. If you were a Miami fan last year, you were looking forward to two kinds of recruits: truly excellent MAC players (at least based on what they did in high school) and players Miami would be happy to have as walk-ons. Problem was, Don Treadwell didn't really believe in differentiating between such things.
Thankfully, Chuck Martin has made a mark in Miami's recruiting, adding two players: tight end Zach Hovey and linebacker Sam Connolly.
Earlier this week, word came in via Twitter (confirmed by Scout) that Zach Hovey, a tight end from Eden Prairie, Minnesota, had committed to the RedHawks. Hovey, rated a three-star prospect by Scout, chose Miami over a number of FBS and FCS offers, including preferred walk-on offers with Minnesota and Wisconsin. Hovey was especially drawn to the tight-end-heavy offense Chuck Martin ran at Notre Dame, which resulted in NFL careers for the likes of Tyler Eifert of the Bengals. He also plans to major in business, and Miami's Farmer School of Business was a big selling point in his choosing the RedHawks.
Miami also picked up a verbal commitment Sunday from Sam Connolly of Mount Carmel High School on the south side of Chicago. The Southtown Star reported that Connolly pledged with the RedHawks before even setting foot in Oxford. Connolly, who connected with Martin over their shared background (they both grew up in the same area) is likely to redshirt his first season. In addition to being a standout on the football field -- he led Mount Carmel in tackles during their state title run last fall -- he's a star in the classroom, boasting a 4.0 GPA and a 26 ACT.