Brendan Loftus committed to the Hurricanes on Tuesday afternoon.
What to Like: The first thing that jumps out at you when watching Loftus is his size and length. He checked in at 6-foot-7 at a Nike event back in the spring and he's pushing 290 pounds before his senior season even starts. He has long arms, a narrow waste, and carries it well. We're talking about a kid who will likely be able to carry 320 pounds with relative ease. Athletically, he's pretty gifted. He is light on his feet for someone his size and can move laterally extremely well. It's unlikely to watch an opposing defensive end get the edge on him and he also does a nice job of getting to the second level. He seems to have a good understanding of the game, which probably stems from having played the last few years at Godby High for a former college coach (at FSU). The Hurricanes are trying to get a pipeline going in the Tallahassee area and it hasn't been easy. Loftus could be the start of it. It wasn't likely they were going to be able to pull an FSU target but Loftus should be the start of UM being very active in the area and possibly pulling more kids from that area in the future.
What may concern you: Loftus plays right tackle in high school and for someone his size he simply doesn't play a real physical brand of football. It's not common that you see him firing off the ball and knocking his defender into the dirt. In fact, a couple of his much smaller teammates were doing a lot more of that in 2014. Loftus needs to get stronger and more physical if he'll ever be able to compete at the major college level. He also missed a few games because of injury as a junior so he's never proven that he can play a full season at a high level.
Bottom Line: Loftus landed early offers from schools like Wisconsin, Syracuse, and UCLA so he was recruited like a low three-star. Florida State never actively recruited him and Penn State didn't offer despite a recent visit. He has the size and football IQ and athletic ability you like to see but he will need to get stronger and a lot more physical. Time will tell if it'll happen. He is now one of six offensive line commitments for the Hurricanes, which means there's a good chance they're done at the position heading into the fall (unless an elite prospect wants to commit).