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2007 '07 FL RB Noel Devine (West Virginia signee)

Discussion in 'Football Recruiting' started by BuckNutty, May 10, 2004.

  1. AFrost20

    AFrost20 GO BUCKEYES!!

    He will probably be a Maurice Drew type in D-1A football. Not big enough to carry all the load...but would excel at punt/kickoff returns and run it 10-15 plays per game. His small size doesnt mean much in high school, cause most of the guys are such horrible tacklers, he never gets hit good. That will certainly change in college....especially if he plays AGAINST OSU!
  2. osugrad21

    osugrad21 Capo Regime Staff Member

    Sun Sentinel

    [FONT=Verdana,Arial, Helvetica][FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]It took being adopted by Deion Sanders before this tailback realized where home really was[/FONT]

    By Chris Harry
    Orlando Sentinel
    Posted July 26 2006

    [FONT=Verdana,Arial, Helvetica] CAPE CORAL -- A smile, complete with shiny gold grill, breaks out on Noel Devine's face when the conversation turns to the chaos of last summer.

    Deion Sanders and adoption papers. A reported kidnapping. A move to Texas. A sudden change of heart.

    [/FONT] [FONT=Verdana,Arial, Helvetica] It all made for one of the most bizarre stories to hit Florida in years.

    Devine, the North Fort Myers High tailback with a name to match his football skills, shrugs it all off. What's a little adversity to someone who has taken Devine's path to becoming the top-rated football prospect in the state and the most dynamic player in the nation?

    Devine's father died of AIDS when Devine was an infant. The disease took his mother when he was 11. His living situation became dependent on the kindness of others; their patience, too. Baby Desirae was born 16 months ago to one girlfriend. Baby Andre was born nine months ago to another. It won't be long before his children are playing in the same streets where Devine saw a best friend shot to death his sophomore year of high school.

    He could have left it all behind 11 months ago. That's when Sanders, an eight-time Pro Bowl cornerback and the most celebrated Southwest Florida athlete ever, was made aware of Devine's talent and unsettled situation at home. With the blessing of Devine's maternal grandmother, he began official guardianship proceedings.

    Devine moved into Sanders' 30,000-square-foot mansion on 88 lush acres of Texas affluence Aug 7.

    He moved out Aug. 8.

    "I'm sure some people thought I was really stupid," says Devine, 18. "But I missed home."

    He missed the Harlows, the family with whom he has been living for the better part of six years. He missed his two children. And he missed his friends, like Robbie Harlow and Alonzo "Pop" Stewart.

    "I was behind him either way," Stewart says. "But I knew he'd be back."

    Sanders' home in Prosper, Texas, apparently had nothing on the neighborhood referred to as "Party Town."

    Some party.

    On May 30, Stewart was standing on the street when an acquaintance sneaked up from behind, pulled his head back and slashed his neck with a razor.

    Standing in the Harlows' kitchen, Stewart describes the attack, rubbing the 30-some stitches on his neck.

    Where did it happen?

    "Right across the street," Stewart says.

    For this, Devine left Sanders and a life of collateral fame and fortune.

    "He went back to the familiar," Sanders says. "That was the comfortable decision to make."

    Time will tell whether it was the right decision. Fort Myers is where Devine got his name, thanks to 4,706 yards, 58 touchdowns and a 10.7-yards-per-carry average over three prep seasons. But the ties that bind can be the ones that hold you back.

    [/FONT][FONT=Verdana,Arial, Helvetica] On Dec. 30, 2004, Devine and some friends piled into a car and drove to the home of Clyde Lamar Robinson Jr. Robinson, then 15, had been harassing some female friends. Devine and his friends went looking for a fight.

    For 15-year-old Rashard Patterson, it was fatal. Robinson came out of his house with a sawed-off shotgun, fired and hit Patterson in the stomach. Patterson died that night.

    [/FONT][FONT=Verdana,Arial, Helvetica]When news reports surfaced about the area's best athlete being so close to such a tragedy, people in the community began to talk. One of them was Steven DeShazo, the principal at North Fort Myers High when Sanders was a blue-chip football, basketball and baseball prospect bound for Florida State in 1985. DeShazo called Sanders and arranged a meeting with Devine.

    "It was no secret he had a knack for hanging out in the wrong places," Keith White, a director at an inner-city boys' and girls' club, said of Devine.

    That's what Sanders had heard. Yet his first impression was of a good kid who had grown up with a lot of pain, and probably a little too quickly.

    He spoke with Lee Bertha Thomas, Devine's grandmother and guardian. She had accepted that Devine spent most of his time -- and nights -- with the Harlows, but she still was responsible for him by law. She and Sanders agreed on a plan.

    Sanders hired an attorney and began adoption proceedings. While Sanders played his final NFL season for the Baltimore Ravens, Devine would stay in Prosper and become Deion and his wife Pilar's sixth child.

    "I'd been where Noel wants to go, and I didn't think his situation -- the lack of structure around him -- was conducive to getting there," Sanders says. "There are lessons to be learned about responsibility, accountability and values, especially as a father. I thought I could help him."

    The day the two left town, a call went to Fort Myers police saying Sanders had kidnapped Devine and was taking him to Maryland against his will.

    One of Devine's friends made the call.

    "I kind of wanted to go," Devine recalls. "And I kind of didn't."

    After spending nearly a week with Sanders at Ravens camp in Maryland, Devine was put on a plane to Texas to begin his new life.

    That new life ended after one day.

    Devine found the keys to one of Sanders' SUVs and drove it to the Dallas/Fort Worth Airport. He parked at the curb, left the engine running and hopped a flight to Florida.

    Hours later, he was back with the Harlows.

    "It's hard to leave home," Devine says. "Maybe I could have done it for one year, but it was going to be two years. I have friends and family here."

    He paused. "And I missed my little girl," he says. "I thought about it. I want my kids to know who I am."

    A year later, pictures of Devine's children are scattered throughout the Harlow house.

    "It's hard to blame a father for wanting to be there for his children, isn't it?" says Liz Harlow, 41, a clerk at Lowe's. "Maybe if Deion had approached it differently. If he had said, `I'll be your mentor. Come to Texas some. Come watch me play some,' that might have worked.

    "But I think Noel heard the word `adoption,' and it scared the bejesus out of him."

    [/FONT][FONT=Verdana,Arial, Helvetica] Devine is an adult by law and responsible for his actions. He has no adult police record, and Harlow, mother of five counting Devine, will do her best to keep it that way.

    "Noel has a family here," says Robert Harlow, a 42-year-old electrician. "That's something Deion and those other people didn't understand."

    [/FONT][FONT=Verdana,Arial, Helvetica]Sanders hesitates when asked about the Harlows.

    "The only thing I would say to them is that I was trying to help them, not take anything away from them," Sanders says. "Those people are in no-man's land right now. How can you tell someone where to go when you've never been there yourself?"

    North Fort Myers coach James Iandoli and Assistant Principal Ken Burns teamed to get Devine tutored and put him in summer school. They've monitored his academic progress to the point Devine is "recruitable" for the nation's best programs, Iandoli says.

    NCAA rules prohibit university officials from commenting on prospects, but that hasn't stopped word from getting out that several high-level programs have cooled on Devine.

    Incredible speed and quickness might allow them to look past his size -- Devine is 5 feet 8 and 170 pounds, though he bench-presses 350 pounds -- but they're hesitant to invest in a prospect whose life choices appear dubious.

    On the subject of Devine's character, Iandoli is his star's biggest defender.

    "He is not a bad kid," Iandoli says. "I think life has dealt him a bad hand, and he's doing extremely well, given the circumstances."

    Last Thanksgiving, the Fort Myers News-Press selected Devine as one of the area's top 10 turkeys, an honor bestowed annually to locals "who were inept, stupid, unpleasant or conniving." For his decision to leave Sanders, Devine was lumped in with unsavory politicians and civic leaders.

    He was 17.

    Devine has seen Internet posts saying he smokes cigarettes and does drugs. He has seen others that mock his fatherhood.

    Devine says there are people in his school rooting for him to fail.

    Sanders isn't one of them.

    "I'm praying for him," he said.

    The Orlando Sentinel is a Tribune Co. newspaper.
  3. Poz79

    Poz79 Newbie

    scout $


    In Noel's Kickoff Classic against Ida Baker he had 4 rushes for 164 yards and 4 TDs.
  4. MrCodeDude

    MrCodeDude Rookie

    That is unreal. And he's only received offers from FSU and Nebraska so far?
  5. MililaniBuckeye

    MililaniBuckeye The satanic soulless freight train that is Ohio St Staff Member Tech Admin

    If the kid leaves a 30,000 sq ft mansion after only a day because he misses "the hood", then I doubt many out-of-Florida colleges have much of a chance of locking him down for three to four years...
  6. MrCodeDude

    MrCodeDude Rookie

    I'm as big of a suburban white person as can be, but I would think that the communities in the ghetto would be fairly tight-knit and unless he really wanted to get out of the community, it would be incredibly hard to leave.
  7. Buckskin86

    Buckskin86 Moderator

  8. BuckeyeNation27

    BuckeyeNation27 Goal Goal USA! Staff Member

    Why send an offer to a kid that won't get into a juco?
  9. osugrad21

    osugrad21 Capo Regime Staff Member

    Wow. Talk about misguided...shame
  10. tedginn05

    tedginn05 Newbie

    Yea no crap. I mean, anything he improves this year in his grades will help, but it won't make up for the 3 years before that.
  11. wadc45

    wadc45 Bourbon, Bow Ties and Baseball Hats Staff Member BP Recruiting Team

    Free Scout


    From the Preseason Classics report:

  12. Poz79

    Poz79 Newbie

    Scout $


    Update by Jamie Newberg. Noel is receiving calls from Florida State, Nebraska, LSU, Texas, Florida, Michigan and some others according to his H.S. head coach James Landoli.
  13. OSUBuckeye4Life

    OSUBuckeye4Life "THE" Ohio State Buckeyes

    WVU has been mentioned in a few recent updates. Also, Devine is playing on ESPNU right now and they mentioned him possibly taking an official there.
  14. osugrad21

    osugrad21 Capo Regime Staff Member


    Devine to play in Army Bowl
    North star one of 80 chosen nationwide

    By Dan Deluca
    Originally posted on December 06, 2006

    The U.S. Army wants Noel Devine. To play in its high school football all-star game, that is.

    The North Fort Myers senior accepted an invitation Tuesday to play for the East team in the 2007 U.S. Army All-American Bowl, to be held Jan. 6 at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Tex.

    The game will be broadcast live on NBC.
    A contingent representing the bowl presented Devine with an official game jersey during an afternoon ceremony in North Fort Myers High School's cafeteria.

    "It's a once-in-a-lifetime experience," Devine said. "I want to thank my teammates and my coaches."
    Devine is one of 80 players nationwide out of a pool of more than 4,000 to be invited to participate.

    "It's extremely tough to make something like this," North Fort Myers football coach James Iandoli said. "A lot of stuff plays into it."

    Now in its seventh year, the All-American Bowl has included an impressive array of gridiron talent. The game's alumni include NFL players Reggie Bush (New Orleans Saints), Vince Young (Tennessee Titans), Kevin Jones (Detroit Lions and Michael Clayton (Tampa Bay Buccaneers), along with collegiate standouts Adrian Peterson (Oklahoma), Chris Leak (Florida), Ted Ginn Jr. (Ohio State) and Dwayne Jarrett (Southern California).
  15. wadc45

    wadc45 Bourbon, Bow Ties and Baseball Hats Staff Member BP Recruiting Team

    Rivals $


    By Farrell...a history of the soap opera that has been Noel's high school career. He has been suspended from school for five days for an argument with his coach following their season-ending loss to Manatee. He is now leaning towards leaving Florida as a result of everything and is considering moving back in with Deion Sanders. He mentions being interested in LSU and West Virginia, although prep school is a legit possibility at this point.


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