Versatile Fort Lauderdale University School defender Richard Yeargin III became the sixth Suns player to commit to a Football Bowl Subdivision program Friday night when he pledge to Notre Dame.
Yeargin, the No. 6 player in the Sentinel's 2014 Florida Top 100, announced his decision via his Twitter account, @ryearginIII, “I am officially committed to the University of Notre Dame …. #GoIrish #GoldenArmy14.”
He picked the Irish over offers from more than 50 schools, including schools he had said during the spring that he was most interested in: Florida, Florida State, Tennessee, UCLA, Arkansas, Clemson, Georgia Tech and Marshall.
The 6-foot-4, 225-pound Yeargin can play any of several different positions on the defense and will bounce between linebacker and defensive end this season as head coach Roger Harriott looks to make sure opposing teams have a hard time keeping track of him. He’s a hybrid-type who can drop back into pass coverage but also rush the quarterback with a vengeance.
Yeargin came over to the USchool in February, transferring from Hollywood Chaminade-Madonna, as did Chaminade teammate and quarterback Sean White. The addition of both players filled huge holes in the Suns’ lineup to make repeating last year’s state crown much more realistic this season.
With QB Michael White (USF) and linebackers like Skai Moore (South Carolina) and Nick Internicola (Rutgers) gone, University was going to need some players to step up. With White and Yeargin knocking on Harriott’s door, the holes started to disappear.
University moves to Class 4A this season, after winning the 3A title a year ago, but the Suns definitely have the horses to compete, although the competition is more will be stiff, with defending Class 4A champs Booker T. Washington standing in the way for a likely semifinal clash of the titans.
Five University seniors have already committed to FBS schools, with Yeargin, White, who is headed to Auburn, WR Chris Taylor (Duke), LB Brandon Russell (Rutgers), and K Andrew Dirocco (Tulane), while talented safety Quincy Wilson will soon be stepping into the group and WR Emmanuel Soto is also likely an FBS signee, among others. Center Ephi Levy is also headed to the next level, committed to FCS school Bryant University.
(UPDATE: On Sunday (Aug. 4), University School added a sixth FBS commitment as RB Lajuan Hunt pledged to the Air Force Academy.)
University also has several underclassmen who will eventually join the ranks like juniors RB Jordan Scarlett, CB Rashard Causey and DT Brandon Boyce and sophomore phenom WR Sam Bruce.
Yeargin’s athleticism and strength are the most impressive traits, but off the field he is a good student and very grounded as a person.
He said during an interview in spring practice, “"People are going to latch on to you when you are at your peak of success, but as you are climbing the ladder, you have to remember where you came from ... where you started," Yeargin said. "It's important to always remember that and not get that sense of complacency because you can always get knocked right back down."
Yeargin joins fellow Fort Lauderdale athlete Corey Holmes, a wide receiver at St. Thomas Aquinas, among the 15 commitments to the Notre Dame 2014 recruiting class.
Chris Hays is the Sentinel's recruiting coverage coordinator and can be reached at email@example.com. Follow us on Twitter at @Os_Recruiting and Facebook at Orlando Sentinel Recruiting and now on Pinterest at Orlando Recruiting.Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun