With a new coaching staff, Miami Central has turned into quite a powerhouse in South Florida. The team finished 12-2 a year ago before falling to eventual class 6A state champion Miramar in the fourth round of the playoffs.
A lot of talent will be returning the season for the Rockets, so expectations are even higher. Though they have a prolific passing attacking, their defense is one of the best units in the state. Leading the way is lock-down corner Thomas Finnie and he holds a handful of offers at this time.
"South Carolina gave me an offer," the 5-foot-10, 170-pound Finnie said. "They were the first ones - the Gamecocks, Steve Spurrier. Then FIU and Syracuse offered. I also have ones from UCF and Purdue. I think all of them came throughout the spring."
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Finnie says the offer from South Carolina caught him a bit off guard. He plans to visit Columbia in the near future.
"I surprised me that my first offer was from an SEC school," he said. "I was really excited when I got it. I thought, 'I wouldn't mind going and attending their school.'
"I'm going up there on an unofficial visit to see the campus and everything. I've talked to the coach but we haven't set up an exact time just yet. It'll be soon, though."
Could Finnie pull the trigger on a commitment during the trip?
"I'm going to wait a little while to commit anywhere," he said. "I'm still trying to see the campus. I've never been to South Carolina. I guess I don't know what will happen if it just blows me away. It's possible (that I commit), I guess. I just have to see what's going on from there during the visit."
The talented defender has visited a few in-state programs this summer as well and has impressed at each stop.
"I went to a camp at Florida State," Finnie said. "They're recruiting me some. I've also been to Florida and to FIU. FIU gave me an offer. Florida State wants me to come back before the summer ends. I've got to go back and talk to the coaches. I've been talking to the coach from there pretty regularly."
For now, Finnie says that he is still open to any suitors.
"Whatever other teams offer me and invite me on a visit, I wouldn't mind going and seeing if I like it and everything," he said. "If they offer me, then I'm going to give them my time and consider their school. I'll go to any school that will let me play. I want to get the best education at the same time and have the best experience for myself."
With Central playing teams with standout receivers seemingly every week, Finnie has a big responsibility on his shoulders. It is something for which he says he is ready, though.
"They feel I have the speed and I have the talent," he said of his coaches. "I'm the main guy. I'm going to man up against their best receiver and be on an island by myself. I'm that guy and the coaches trust me to be that guy."
Finnie says he wouldn't mind joining some of his current teammates in college as well. It is a possibility as eight of them already hold scholarship offers.
"We talk about it a lot," he said of playing together at the next level. "It would help in the adjustment if you have people there that you're comfortable with. We talk about it with the defense and the offense all the time. It would be great to play with some of these guys in college."