The next time I’ll go looking for a missing a football prospect, the first place I’ll check is with Miami.
In one of several conversations I had this week with Fork Union coach John Shuman, he casually mentioned that one of his players, Ryheem Lockley, has committed to Miami.
At the time of The Roanoke Times’ annual Christmas Day recruiting package in 2011, Lockley was rated the No. 23 junior in Virginia.
Lockley was listed as a 6-foot-4, 217-pound linebacker for Christchurch School in Saluda.
(I got in trouble recently when I referred to Christchurch as being in the Northern Neck, only to be advised that I was confusing the Northern Neck with the Middle Peninsula.
So, let’s just say that Christchurch School, alma mater of late Roanoke Times sports editor Bill Brill, could form a triangle with Richmond to the northwest and Newport News to the southwest).
At one point, Lockley was listed as going to school at Middlesex, a county high school located in Saluda, but then I lost track of him.
The same thing happened with Alex Figueroa, a former Washington Post All-Metro choice who was not an academic qualifier coming out of Brooke Point High School in Stafford.
First, Figueroa was going to go to Division II Shepherd. Then, he was headed to Fork Union, except an injury would have prevented him from playing there. Figueroa eventuallly met the required SAT scores and ended up enrolling at Miami last January.
Regarding Lockley, the Miami Herald reported last winter that he committed to the Hurricanes on Feb. 3 but there was question at the time if he would qualify academically or if there would be room for him.
The story said he picked the ‘Canes over UVa, Virginia Tech and West Virginia, although I tend to doubt that the first two made scholarship offers. Supposedly, Miami wants Lockley (6-4, 220) as a wide receiver.
SHUMAN SAID that Corwin Cutler, a quarterback from Ocean Lakes High in Virginia Beach, will be in uniform for the first time Sunday in a game with Christopher Newport’s junior varsity
Cutler, who had committed to Virginia and later signed with the Cavaliers, suffered a knee injury during the 2012 season that required reconstructive surgery. However, he needed to improve his academic credentials and was headed to prep school anyway.
“Maybe he’ll get five to 10 reps,” Shuman said. “Cutler is coming. He’s a little scattered, a little green. He’s got some things going on. We were slow to get him in and slow to put him out there.
“We’re hoping that he’ll grasp what we’re doing offensively. He’s got an arm and the ball comes out pretty good. It’s just a matter of getting his mind caught up to his talent.”
Shuman said that another 2013 UVa signee, Zack Jones, is not at Fork Union. Jones is the younger brother of former UVa tailback and co-captain Perry Jones.
Jones needed a course that he is taking at Piedmont Virginia Community College in Charlottesville, where his brother is teaching and helping to coach one of the local high-school teams.
“I said, ‘Hey, Jon [Tenuta] and Mike [London], things are moving too fast to move on this guy. We’ve got to get going,’ “ Shuman said. “He’s just not there. Couldn’t work it out.”
Three future Virginia Tech players are at Fork Union – 2013 signees Holland Fisher, D.J. Reid and Cequan Jefferson.
THE DECISION OF Benedictine High School basketball standout Robert Johnson not to attend Virginia was not surprising in light of UVa’s fortunes with Benedictine players over the years.
Johnson, who announced Friday that he had committed to Indiana, joins a list of basketball signees from Benedictine going back to John Kuester (North Carolina), Mark Crow (Duke), Les Henson (Virginia Tech), Ed Davis (UNC) and Michael Gbinije (Duke before transferring to Syracuse).
In 2011, Virginia Tech beat out Virginia for a football prospect from Benedictine, Nigel Williams, a redshirt freshman defensive tackle for the Hokies who had a sack against Alabama. Another Benedictine product, Charley Meyer, is a walk-on wide receiver who has shown some potential for the Hokies.
To get some insight into the Benedictine mentality, I called former VMI men’s basketball coach Joe Cantafio, whose son, Joey, played basketball for Benedictine. The elder Cantafio, located at one of the South Carolina beaches, had absolutely no insight on that matter or anything else.
“I got nothin’,“ Cantafio said, “and I pride myself on having nothin.’ “