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Miami RedHawks 2014 National Signing Day Results: Chuck Martin Inks 26 In His First Class

Chuck Martin and his staff brought in 26 players for their first class in Oxford. We take a closer look.

Notre Dame transfer Andrew Hendrix is among the 26 members of Miami's recruiting class.
Notre Dame transfer Andrew Hendrix is among the 26 members of Miami's recruiting class.

Chuck Martin had a tough row to hoe when he became head coach of the Miami RedHawks. The team was coming off seasons of 4-8, 4-8, and 0-12, and once Zac Dysert left for the Broncos, it was painfully obvious that one of the best quarterbacks in school history was about the only thing standing between four wins and zero those first two years. And recruiting had largely been at a standstill since Don Treadwell's dismissal after week five. Despite those obstacles, Martin and his staff hit the ground running, bringing in a class of 26 players after two months on the recruiting trail. Here they are:

Name Position Height Weight Hometown (Previous School)
Ikeem Allen Power 6-2 300 Charlotte, NC (Mallard Creek)
Deion Cineus Power 6-3 300 Miami Beach, FL (Miami Beach)
Sam Connolly Power 6-2 220 Chicago, IL (Mount Carmel)
Kelvin Cook Skill 5-10 170 Colerain, OH (Colerain)
Alex Demers Power 6-2 270 Tipp City, OH (Tippecanoe)
Mack Duffin Power 6-3 220 Avon, IN (Avon)
Bradley Earnest Skill 6-1 210 Atlanta, GA (Lakeside)
Andrew Hendrix Skill 6-2 226 Cincinnati, OH (Moeller) (Notre Dame)
Zach Hovey Power 6-5 235 Eden Prairie, MN (Eden Prairie)
Chris Hudson Skill 6-6 235 Hazard, KY (Hazard)
Trey Knes Power 6-5 225 Chesterfield, MO (Parkway Central)
Sam Martin Skill 6-3 180 Boulder, CO (Fairview)
Matt Merimee Skill 6-2 200 Cleveland, OH (Benedictine)
Paul Moses Skill 6-0 220 Toledo, OH (Toledo Central Catholic)
Mitch Palmer Power 6-4 275 St. Louis, MO (De Smet Jesuit)
Nate Patterson Power 6-4 230 Perrysburg, OH (Perrysburg)
Gus Ragland Skill 6-1 200 Cincinnati, OH (Moeller)
Jordan Rigg Power 6-5 250 Springboro, OH (Springboro)
Richard Schoen Skill 5-11 180 Riverside, IL (Fenwick)
Ryan Smith Power 6-5 240 Oak Park, IL (Fenwick)
Alonzo Smith Skill 5-11 200 Palm Beach Gardens, FL (Dwyer)
Zach Swarts Power 6-2 275 Ft. Wayne, IN (Homestead)
Daryus Thompson Skill 6-2 192 Powder Springs, GA (McEachern)
Alex Welch Power 6-4 251 Cincinnati, OH (Elder) (Notre Dame)
Lo Wood Skill 5-11 194 Apopka, FL (Apopka) (Notre Dame)
Kenny Young Skill 5-10 182 Tallahassee, FL (Godby)

(Note: Miami's official release on the class identifies players only as "power" and "skill," and not by position. More on this below.)


The news about this class that's gotten the most nationwide news is the addition of three Notre Dame transfers -- Andrew Hendrix, Alex Welch, and Lo Wood -- who have already graduated and enrolled at Miami. The three of them came to South Bend highly touted, especially Welch, but injuries and the vagaries of college competition meant they didn't live up to the promise they showed as 18-year-olds. But that is no matter when it comes to Miami. With Hendrix, Welch, and Wood, Chuck Martin has three players he trusts a great deal (why would he have let them transfer otherwise?) and three players who can make an immediate difference in terms of team leadership. I have no idea if any of these three will start -- though you'd expect immediate lineup help from them, because why transfer otherwise -- but they can certainly provide a locker room presence that seems to have been sorely lacking last season, apart from the injured Austin Boucher.


When it comes to the freshmen who may be able to make an impact right away, my thought is that the impact will be most felt on the lines. While other recruits may have gotten more stars, anyone who has watched Miami football the past few years knows that the team's biggest problem has been losing the battle in the trenches on both sides of the ball. And it's here that guys like Ikeem Allen, Deion Cineus, and Zac Swarts may see a chance to contribute right away: they already have the size to play in college, and based on their pedigrees, they have the talent on paper. Another recruit who may step into a role from day one is Paul Moses, who turned down an offer from Nebraska to be a running back for Miami.


As I noted above, Miami's release about the recruiting class doesn't list players by position. It simply says whether they are "power" or "skill." If you've been following Miami's recruiting closely (and who hasn't?), you'd know that Martin and his staff have recruited approximately eleventy-twelve tight ends. The vast majority of these guys are listed as "power" players. What this suggests to my untrained eye is that Miami recruited a number of "tight ends" who will redshirt, put on 75 pounds, and end up as linemen. There simply aren't enough openings at tight end for all of these guys to play that position in college. But I'm also not worried -- Miami has a long tradition of bulking up bigger tight ends and turning them into linemen, and it looks like that's something Martin plans to revive.


I'm admittedly a totally biased writer, but I am very happy with this class. At the beginning of Chuck Martin's tenure, it looked like Miami would end up with a class the size of Akron's. Instead, Miami hauled in 26 players (three of whom are transfers, and thus don't count against the 25-freshmen-per-year rule), many of whom turned down offers from BCS programs to come to Oxford. (For example, Paul Moses -- admittedly a Treadwell commit -- chose Miami over Nebraska, Sam Martin spurned Rutgers, and Zac Swarts picked Miami over Duke, Illinois, and Indiana.) This class is far above and beyond what I expected, especially when we're talking about an 0-12 program and two months' recruiting work. I give the RedHawks' incoming class a solid A: perhaps not an A graded on an absolute scale, but definitely an A on a curve that takes into account the team's state in late 2013.