Rutgers Breakdown: A Florida Review

When Coach Schiano first arrived at Rutgers one of his main goals was to go into Florida and tap some of the state's top prospects and bring them back to New Jersey. Some of Rutgers' coaches, like Darren Rizzi, Chris Demarest and Rod Holder have done just that. They are about to land some bona fide talent from South Florida, talent that will help Rutgers take that all-important next step.

Of those prospects, one of the best of the group is Chris Dirksz of Dr. Krop High School in Miami. Dirksz was one of the best defensive linemen in all of South Florida by the end of the season.

In a game against Miami Central Dirksz dominated the competition. The entire game it seemed if he was living in the Rockets backfield. After playing most of the year at middle linebacker Dirsksz saw some of his first action at defensive end. He did not disappoint as he made a mess of the Rockets offensive line. What is impressive about Dirksz is how quick he comes off the football. He plays with great leverage and is super quick off the ball. Both those qualities are very important for defensive lineman. There is no doubt that with the proper coaching this young man could contend for 1st Team All-Big East honors in a couple of years. He is that talented.

Another Broward County player to keep an eye out is Chris McClover out of Dillard High School.

Dillard has produced some of the best players in Broward County over the years. One of those players happens to be McClover's brother, Stanley, who starts at defensive end for the Auburn Tigers. Chris is not as polished of a football player as Stanley but his upside may be just as good. Chris is a 6-foot-3 receiver that is in the same mold as former All-Big East receiver Antonio Bryant of Pittsburgh. Just like Bryant, McClover was not recruited by any of the Florida schools. All Bryant did was turn out to be one of the best receivers in all of college football. McClover could do the same thing at Rutgers.

One of the biggest sleepers in Rutgers' class this year may end up being Vantrise Studivant.

The Sun Coast tight end finished off his season in dominating fashion. In the Palm Beach All-Star game Studivant went against University of Miami defensive end commitment Courtney Harris. All he did was step on to the field and pancake block the future Hurricane lineman into the ground four times in just the first two series. That's right, four times in just the first two series! The performance impressed all those who attended the game. What is most impressive about this future Scarlet Knight is his versatility. He can end up playing on either the offensive or defensive line at the next level.

One of the most underrated players this year in Broward County, was Dennis Campbell. He ended his senior season with an impressive performance in the Dade/Broward All-Star game, a game which pits some of the best in South Florida against each other every year. Campbell's touchdown reception at the end of the game looked like it would seal the deal for the Broward County All-Stars. Campbell, a speedy playmaker has a knack of finding himself around the football when the game is on the line. Whether it's on offense or defense Campbell looks to be a player that will shine at Rutgers. The last of the Rutgers commits from South Florida that should not be forgotten is Damaso Munoz.

Here is a prospect that committed early to the Scarlet Knights and never let go of his promise to the Rutgers staff. To Munoz, commitment meant just that. As a junior Munoz played out of position all season long. He was forced to play defensive tackle for the Southridge Spartans. As a result most college coaches overlooked him during his junior year. So all Munoz did was show up at the Rutgers camp in Miami this summer and impress the Scarlet Knight coaches enough to earn himself an offer. He ran the forty yard dash is less than 4.5 seconds. This past season Munoz got the chance to move to middle linebacker for his high school football team. During one of the games I attended Munoz lead his defense with over 10 tackles while he made a living in the Jackson High School backfield. He is the type of player that is not afraid of contact. Munoz is willing to lay it all on the line and brings the lumber. Whether it's at middle linebacker or strong safety Rutgers got another solid prospect out of South Florida.

Overall it looks like Rutgers may have gotten its best haul of prospects from Florida since coach Schiano has been there. Each of these prospects has the chance to one day be 1st team All-Big East players. If that happens there is a good chance that Rutgers fans will look back at this group of prospects and say they were the reason why the Scarlet Knights turned it around.


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