"I've been training so hard getting ready for this upcoming season," Menocal said. "We wanna be state bound again this season and finish off the job this time. That's been on my mind ever since the game last season. I wanna leave high school with a state championship."
Menocal, 6-foot-3 and 235 pounds, became a major college recruit in the process and committed to the Hurricanes shortly after his dream school offered him a scholarship last month.
"I knew I wanted to be a Cane," he said. "I took visits to Florida State and Georgia Tech and both were very nice but I just didn't feel the family atmosphere like I did at Miami. Miami, as soon as I went there, I felt the sense of the family atmosphere and that is something I wanted to be part of. As soon as I committed I called the other coaches and told them I committed. I gave them a courtesy call."
Menocal says the Canes had the one thing he was looking for most in a school -- being comfortable.
"The number one thing I was looking for was to be comfortable and that's how I felt at Miami," he said. "Plus, I want to win a National Championship and I know that can happen at Miami. I like the way they play. I like their defense. You can tell from the graduates like Ray Lewis and Ed Reed that they play really aggressive."
Menocal talked about his relationships with some of the Miami coaches.
"My recruiting coordinator is Coach Petri but Coach Barrow, he is the one I been in most contact with," he said. "Also coach Shannon, I called him when I wanted to come down because all the other coaches were out of town."
Having the opportunity to be coached by a former NFL linebacker of 14 years was also very important to the young linebacker.
"I think it's important I build a relationship with Coach Barrow," he said. "He played in NFL, he won championships at Miami and now he is my position coach. He is a coach that will teach me how to play the game better. He is very knowledgeable and you can tell that when you talk to him."
Menocal, who claims a 3.5 GPA and a 1550 three-part SAT, has a message for opposing teams this fall.
"My goal this year is to dominate and let no one get in my way," he said. "If teams wanna run the ball, we're gonna make them regret it. I'm ready."
-- Junior Highlights