S. Fla. Standout Up To 7 Offers

There may not be an athlete in Dade County right now that's accomplished more at the prep level than South Miami standout Javier Estopinan. In addition to being an All-County linebacker last season after registering 125 tackles, two interceptions, and two defensive touchdowns, Estopinan went undefeated in wrestling season for the second year in a row.

"I haven't lost a match since my freshman year," Estopinan said. "I'm 45-0 since then and 94-3 overall. But I know that I only have one year of wrestling left. It's impossible to do both in college because of all the time that goes into football. Since Florida is more known for football than wrestling, I'm being recruited more for football."

On the gridiron, Estopinan is quickly emerging into one of south Florida's top linebacker prospects. At 6-2 1/2 and 235, he is back to his natural weight after wrestling at 215 during the season.

"I was dieting all the time during wrestling season to cut weight," he said. "My natural weight is about 230 and I'm right around 235 right now. I probably will end up being close to 245 or 250 in college though."

A full academic qualifier (2.5/990), Estopinan said he lets his play speak for itself.

"I'm quiet but I play the game at 200 miles per hour within my body and within my head," he said. "There's a lot of competition here but I want to be the best. A lot of hard work goes into being that."

The talented linebacker received lots of recruiting attention during the May evaluation period from college coaches.

"I took calls from Florida State, Florida, Miami, Pittsburgh, LSU, Ohio State, N.C. State, Boston College, and Rutgers," he said. "LSU, N.C. State, Florida State, Florida, Pittsburgh, Boston College, and Rutgers have already offered me a scholarship.

So basically everyone on the list except for Ohio State and Miami. He hopes to change that real soon.

"My wrestling coach and I leave for a camp at Ohio State on the 20th," he said. "We're going to their wrestling camp for two days and then their football camp for three. Hopefully they'll like me enough at the camp."

So what about the Hurricanes?

"Miami's a great program," he said. "They always produce great players. The only thing about them is that the biggest thing I'm looking for in picking a college is how many linebackers they have on their depth chart. Miami just took four of them. They keep getting a bunch of linebackers where the other schools seem to have mostly juniors and seniors. I'm really open to every school right now and things can change a lot between now and signing day."

Having said that, Estopinan said he's looking at six programs specifically that have lots of junior and senior linebackers on their current roster.

"N.C. State, Florida, Florida State, LSU, and Ohio State have a lot of them and seem to have room for me to come in and play right away," he said. "I'm not sure about Miami right now. They're younger than those other ones."

Estopinan said he's also busy preparing for what he hopes will be a big senior season. There's one game he's looking forward to the most.

"I can't wait for Charlie Jones and South Dade," he said. "He caught us by surprise last season but we'll be ready this year. He's a total stud. He's really aggressive and his legs never stop running. He never gives up and knows how to fight. But we'll see how well he runs if I pop him a few times. I can't wait."

Canes Time Top Stories