ORLANDO, Fla. — Fans and recruitniks have speculated about Sam Bruce for almost a year.
The 4-star wide receiver said he was 70 percent committed to Miami back in the spring, and since then it’s been a guessing game of whether he’ll flip to another school or stick with the Hurricanes.
Bruce insists he hasn’t wavered on his pledge despite that percentage he gave in April.
“I was always committed to Miami,” Bruce told SEC Country after his high school, Fort Lauderdale (Fla.) St. Thomas Aquinas, repeated as Class 7A state champions Friday.
In the late summer and early fall, it appeared Florida could sway him after he made three visits to Gainesville. But through the Miami program’s downward spiral and eventual coaching change, Bruce has remained committed to the Canes when many predicted he wouldn’t.
“I ignore the recruiting junkies,” Bruce said. “These guys on the Internet, they do whatever they want and they say whatever they want. They have no filter. There’s nobody telling them what they can and can not say.”
What they have said, according to Bruce, is that the changes with Miami and lack of attendance at home games would turn him off.
Bruce dismissed both notions.
“Miami is home,” Bruce said. “Who doesn’t want to play at home in front of their home crowd? Who cares if there aren’t that many people in the stands? There aren’t that many people here (at the state championship). But we got the job done, right? As long as we get the job done, who cares.
“We had a couple guys decommit from the University of Miami. But just like I tell (teammate and fellow commit) Michael Irvin (Jr.) all the time, ‘We’re going to roll with who we have and we’re going to build off who we have.’ ”
The Hurricanes now have Mark Richt as their head coach, which received Bruce’s stamp of approval.
“Phenomenal hire, man,” he said. “He’s done some exceptional things at Georgia. I’m hoping he’s going to bring that to the University of Miami.”
Though his UM commitment seems stronger than ever, Bruce is still taking four official visits in January and has previously visited Ohio State.
He may miss a few days of school to make it to Florida, long considered the biggest threat to Miami.
“South Carolina on the 15th, Alabama on the 22nd and Miami is last (Jan. 29),” Bruce said. “Somehow I’ll fit (Florida) in. I have to go to Florida. I’m going to take an official to Florida. I will be there.
“It’s just the point of cramming it in. I don’t have that much time right now. Whatever happens happens. Maybe a midweek or something like that.”
Asked to put a new percentage on his pledge, Bruce simply said, “I’m committed to Miami, man. I’m committed.”