USF receivers coach Phil McGeoghan has the makings of a promising young receiving corps at USF, with Florida transfer Chris Dunkley joining a solid group of freshmen and sophomores that includes Terrence Mitchell, Sterling Griffin, Andre Davis, Ruben Gonzalez and Deonte Welch. Dunkley will sit out the 2011 season as a transfer, but McGeoghan is already excited about the potential for what he adds to the unit for the following three seasons.
"Any time you can get a dynamic playmaker and add to a group of guys who are improving on a day-to-day basis, it's something you have to look at really hard," McGeoghan said Tuesday night. "Chris is a guy who can really run a route. He has great hands. He has some of the best break-point mechanics out there. We evaluated him really hard in 2009 and he was a guy who made play after play after play."
McGeoghan said USF recruited Dunkley extensively out of Pahokee High -- with defensive tackles coach Kevin Patrick as his recruiter, Dunkley visited USF's campus and McGeoghan watched him at practice. Dunkley played both sides of the ball at Pahokee, making an impact not only at receiver but as a cornerback as well.
"He was really aggressive, wanting to play football, loved the game, had the passion and fire, practiced hard," he said. "He was a guy we were very high on in our initial evaluation of the young man's talents."
As is often the case with transfers, McGeoghan said he initially heard of Dunkley's interest in transferring through USF players -- he knows guard Danous Estenor, from nearby in Broward County, as well as Mitchell, who he got to know on the recruiting circuit last year.
"The players talk. They say 'Hey, So-and-So wants to transfer,' and you hear it all the time. 'So-and-So wants to leave this place or that place. There are very few names that actually get a response where you say, 'Really?'" McGeoghan said. "When you hear Chris Dunkley might want to transfer from Florida, that will stop you as a receivers coach. You want to find out what's going on there, because he's that talented."
Dunkley started summer classes Monday, giving him a six-week head start on the rest of USF's incoming class, but that also gives him more time to get acclimated and start learning a new offense and playbook. Like running back Darrell Scott from Colorado, who joined the Bulls last summer, Dunkley was rated as a five-star recruit by Scout.com.
"He's a really special talent," McGeoghan said. "They don't hand out five stars to people because they're average. The kid's got a tremendous amount of talent and a lot of the intangible things you're looking for as well."
As for the young talent the Bulls have collected at receiver, McGeoghan said it's something that's energized him as he heads into his third season with the Bulls.
"You like the youth and you like the talent level," he said. "You like the body types, the athleticism. You've got to be excited. It's just one of those things where you can't wait to get back and get to Vero Beach and start working with these guys and really start to develop some of this young talent, because there's a lot in the room."
-- McGeoghan said he's been pleased with the offseason progress of sixth-year senior A.J. Love, who sat out last season and also the final two spring scrimmages as he recovers from knee surgery in spring 2010.
"A.J. looks really good," he said. "I've been on the road the last two weeks, but he was always in the training room, getting ready to go out and get a workout in every single day. He hasn't taken any time off. He's in the weight room every day for two hours. He's on that practice field running around no matter how hot it is or how tired and sore he is. He's got Bobby Eveld throwing to him. He's got Matt Floyd. He's got everybody. I even saw (Bucs QB) Josh Freeman was here throwing to him. A.J. will grab anybody who will throw the football to him. I'll give him this -- he's like a son to me, but he's working so hard right now. He's put himself in position to be successful this year."
Posted by Greg Auman at 1:13:05 pm on May 18, 2011