The Owls found a potential replacement for running backs Devin “Motor” Singletary and Kerrith Whyte, FAU’s two leading rushers from last season, by flipping former Temple commit Kelvin Dean. Both Singletary and Whyte had one year of eligibility remaining but declared for the NFL draft instead.
“Motor and K-Whyte went to the draft, that gave me an even better chance to come and make an impact,” Dean said. “I could be a freshman All-American.”
Dean rushed for 1,200 yards and 13 touchdowns at Tallahassee-Rickards as a senior. The year prior he rolled to 1,836 yards and 26 touchdowns at Chipley, earning FloridaHSFootball.com’s Class 1A Offensive Player of the Year award.
He hopes to replace Singletary, whose 66 career rushing touchdowns are the sixth most in NCAA football history.
“I look at that like it’s something that’s achievable for me because I’m used to being in the end zone,” said Dean, who says he scored more than 70 touchdowns during his high school career.
Like Whyte, Dean can also return kicks.
“I’m an all-around back,” Dean said. “I know how to break tackles. I have great vision. I can cut really fast. I’ve got breakaway speed.”
Looking to replace three graduated senior linebackers who saw significant action in 2018, FAU secured two commits at the position.
At 6-foot-2 and 215-pounds Tampa Tech’s Jow Lewis is primarily a linebacker, but says the Owls consider him to be a linebacker/safety hybrid.
“His scheme fits me well,” Lewis said of new defensive coordinator Glenn Spencer.
Also a baseball player, Lewis said his speed drew the Owls to him.
“I’m always around the ball,” Lewis said.
Lewis proved to be one of two linebackers to commit to the Owls over the weekend. Miami-Palmetto linebacker Eddie Williams told OwlAccess.com that pledged his services to FAU during his official visit this weekend.
Marshall and Cincinnati were two of the dozen or so teams reportedly to offer Williams.
FAU also received a commitment from junior college wide receiver Adrian Bryant, who announced his commitment via Twitter on Sunday.
The 6-foot, 180-pound Bryant caught 19 passes for 335 yards and four touchdowns in nine games for the College of the Sequoias.
Like Singletary and Whyte, Jovon Durante, FAU’s leading receiver last season, left school early and declared for the draft.
All four players are expected to sign with the Owls later this week during the early signing period, which opens on Wednesday.
As a Temple commit, Dean wasn’t planning to sign early but this weekend changed his plans. He was hoping to find a school that was closer to home.
“I’m so confident in FAU that I’m going to sign early,” Dean said. “I feel that’s really the place for me.”
Lane Kiffin’s third recruiting class now holds a dozen known commitments.