TEN thoughts from the state championships - Part 1
Dalvin Cook made a statement and a big one at that. The Miami Central Rocket senior was brilliant in his final game, rushing for 223-yards and four-touchdowns versus Seffner Armwood. Central won big, 52-7. Two of his touchdown runs were beauties of 37 and 80-yards.
It finally hit me smack dab in the middle of his 80-yarder. Cook found a hole up the middle and exploded down the field, outracing everyone to the end zone. I remember thinking that this kid is a bigger version of former Clemson star and current Buffalo Bill C.J. Spiller.
I really don’t like putting labels or name associations to recruits. It creates expectations and sometimes unrealistic expectations on these kids. Then again, we are all expecting a lot, especially from the ultra talented Cook.
Cook, 5-foot-11, 197-pounds, is truly blessed with some unbelievable athleticism and speed. He may not be the fastest player in the nation but he’s never caught on the gridiron... ever. He has that home run speed that every coach in America covets from the running back position. Cook is truly a home run hitter.
To think he has shared carries and the spotlight with fellow senior Joseph Yearby, only Yearby broke his leg a few weeks ago. When it counted the most, Cook put his team on his back and helped carry the Rockets to their third title in four years. He amassed an impressive 4,267 career rushing yards with an average per carry of 10.69. That places him No. 1 all time (yards per carry) from Dade County. That’s a number even Spiller would appreciate.
There’s no doubt that this kid is a five-star prospect. In most normal years he would widely be considered the top running back in Florida and challenge for the same distinction nationally.
But this is not your normal year, as the state of Florida has three outstanding running backs in Cook, Sony Michel (Plantation American Heritage) and his teammate, Yearby. Then you have a guy like Leonard Fournette (New Orleans St. Augustine), who happens to be a running back and the top recruit nationally regardless of position.
Cook has now been elevated to the No. 4 ranking at this position overall. He was first committed to Clemson before backing off that pledge. Cook then committed to the Gators. During the fall season he took four official visits and a few weeks ago he signed financial aid agreements with the Gators, Seminoles and Hurricanes. While Cook continues to say he remains committed to Florida, he also is set on announcing his final decision during the Under Armour All-America Game on January 2.
TEN thoughts from the state championships
Part 1- Dalvin’s Cook’in!
Part 2 - Raging debate
Part 3- Impressive Ivey
Part 4- South Florida domination
Part 5- What a class
Part 6- Something special
Part 7- Lightning
Part 8- Darling’s golden
Part 9 -Missing in action
Part 10 –Creating buzz
Jamie has been covering college football recruiting since 1992 and is entering his ninth year with Scout.com and FOXSports.com. He’s currently a National Recruiting Analyst and Manager for the state of Florida. Jamie is also covering the NFL Draft for the network.