Top Juco TE signs with Miami

Jerome Washington, one of the nation's most heavily recruited Junior College tight end prospects, signed a National Letter of Intent with Miami today and will start school next month.

Jerome Washington took an interesting path when he left Stony Brook High in Long Island a few years ago. He signed a scholarship to St. Francis University out of high school but then was talked into walking on at Rutgers.

That never happened. Instead, he enrolled at The Gunnery, a prep school in Connecticut. He played there for one season before transferring to Mercer Community College, which does not have its own football team. Instead, Washington played the 2014 season on a club team called Gattaca.

It was there that Washington's recruiting stock took off. After an impressive start to the season, Washington sent his film out to several schools and one of the places it went was to Miami.

The Hurricanes offered him right away and he committed to the Canes a few days later. Despite getting over a dozen other scholarship offers, including schools like Washington and Rutgers, Washington remained solid with his commitment to the Canes. He took an official visit to the school a couple weekends ago, received an in-home visit from Al Golden last week, and officially signed with the Hurricanes today. From an eligibility standpoint, he'll be treated like a freshman.

"First of all, he’s a great character kid," Golden said on Wednesday. "He has four years of eligibility. From that sense, he’s a freshman."

Golden said the coaches are excited about the physical tools Washington brings to the table as a tight end.

"He’s 6-4 and change and 263 pounds. I asked him what he weighed and he said 245. I should have taken the over on that. He’s coming in, a big physical kid. We’ll get him the ball. This is where he wanted to be. A lot of people tried to get him. Larry (Scott) and James (Coley) did a great job with him. He wanted to be a Miami Hurricane. We’re excited about him."

The biggest downside for Washington as a prospect is the low level of competition he's played against lately. Golden said that didn't impact their decision to pursue him.

"No. We did a real thorough evaluation. At the end of the day around 20 people offered him. He’s a hard worker, he has all the requisite skills. He made the right choice. There are all different paths to get to the highest level and this is what he and his mom chose. He’s a great kid."

Washington will join Chris Herndon and Jake O'Donnell to provide depth at the tight end spot in the spring behind expected starter Standish Dobard.

Mid-year Junior College transfers are now eligible to sign LOI's. The Hurricanes landed a commitment from ASA College standout offensive tackle Jahair Jones a few days ago so he's expected to sign very soon. The Canes are still recruiting a couple others as well.

"We expect more," Golden said when asked if UM will add more Juco transfers between now and next month.

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