If you follow high school football in south Florida, you already know that Miami Christopher Columbus is one of the programs to watch every year.
With the school’s first state football title two years ago, runner up three season ago -and this past year during the pandemic, the Explorers and head coach Dave Dunn finished 8-0 with a thrilling south Florida Tri-County win (27-24) over Deerfield Beach
What Dunn has done been able to do with this group of prospects is not only maintain what very successful head coach Chris Merritt had done, but also infuse so much of his knowledge of the game to teach and coach, which he enjoys doing.
What this spring will be all about is looking for starters as well as depth – and the cupboard is far from empty.
The Class of 2022 rising seniors will certainly be the place to start – with impressive talent like Luke Benitez (DT, 5-11, 225), Sebastian Borges (LB/TE, 6-2. 205), Brandon Brana (OC, 5-11, 270), Shiloh Conway (WR/TE, 6-2, 205), Denim Desrosiers (WR/RB, 5-10, 165), Denim Edwards (RB, 5-9, 160), Darren McQueen (DB, 5-9), standout quarterback Fernando Mendoza (6-4, 210), Ken Moore (Athlete, 5-8, 160), Jaiden Mortazavi (WR, 5-11), nationally-rated kicker Luis Palenzuela (5-10, 180), John Starman (DE, 6-3), Bryson Stouffer (DE/TE, 6-2, 220), John Starman, Michael Villanueva (LB, 6-1) and athletic and gifted Cornelius Wright (5-10, 165).
UNDERCLASSMEN ARE THE FUTURE
The talent train is indeed loaded not only for the 2020 season, but beyond with some gifted Class of 2023 athletes such as A.J. Arellano (Athlete, 5-10, 160), state-rated defensive back Ahmere Foster (5-10, 160), Derrick Hart (OL, 6-3, 265), Julian Herrera (OL, 6-3, 300), Konnor Mann (OL, 6-3, 320), Miles McGee (LB/RB, 6-0. 180) and promising offensive lineman Jake Rodriguez (6-3, 285).
This spring will be a great time to look at the 2024 athletes as well. Look for Edward Bandy (Athlete, 5-9, 160), Jeffrey Bandy (QB/DB, 5-9, 155), Benjamin Blackburn (TE, 6-3, 210), Blake Brewer (OL, 6-2, 260), T.J. Capers (DE/TE, 6-3, 205), Shemar Irvin (Athlete, 5-11, 185), Jose Leon (WR, 5-10, 160), Cameron Pineda, Tristan Pineda, Daylen Russell (DL, 6-3, 250), Robert Williams (DT, 6-3, 250) and promising long snapper Jonathan Zarut (6-0, 190).