3 FOR THURSDAY: Fernandez, Paul & Pope Making A Push For The Playoffs

Larry Blustein
September 27, 2018 - 12:55 pm

Larry Blustein

As we head toward the sixth week of the 2018 high school football season, we have to ask ourselves why is everything going so fast?

We waited for this year to unfold for almost eight months, and now, as we approach this weekend, this is where the prospects will prove what they are all about.

Crunch time for teams who are trying to stay in the mix for post season play usually adds up to athletes rising up and stealing the spotlight. It happens every year.

With so many football players still searching for scholarships, the window is closing – as we are now just two months away from the first of two National Signing periods.

Throughout Miami-Dade and Broward Counties, there are talented athletes who continue to get the job done – and while many are on the radar – there are others who are not. That is why being part of 3 For Thursday is yet another avenue to get their name out along with a video that college coaches can see for themselves.

2019 – Basilio Fernandez, LB, Coral Gables. Another of those talented football players who has certainly benefitted from having head coach Roger Pollard back with the Cavaliers.

Pollard, a one-time standout linebacker at Coral Gables has taught this quality football player a lot about a game that he has played at a high level for three years.

Fernandez plays both linebacker and safety, but continues to grow into the position. 


2020 – Shemar Paul, RB, Miami Central. Ever since he made his high school debut last season for Doral Academy, here is someone who was a diference maker. This is a quality back who can get it done against anyone – as he showed in a win against nationally rated St. Thomas Aquinas.

What this young man represents is a back with speed and power. He is already among the best in south Florida, and will start to bring plenty of attention to himself over the next year. 

He will give the Rockets, along with fellow junior Kejon Owens, a continued 1, 2 punch for another year. 


2019 – John “Jake” Pope, OL, Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas. One of the south Florida prospects who has never really gotten the recognition that he deserves.

At 6-7, this University of Kentucky commitment is truly one of the big men who have helped the Raiders go so far this season.

His athletic ability has helped him become a better prospect – also do in part to the work that Coaches Connolly, Mygrant and Wilson have put in to make him a better all-around lineman.

One of the major pluses that Pope has in his favor is his overall athletic ability. Was a state-rated heavyweight wrestler a year ago.


Catch the South Florida High School Sports Radio Show each Tuesday night (8-9) on WQAM (560AM - https://wqam.radio.com/media/podcast/south-florida-high-school-sports-radio). For the past 11 years, the players and coazches who are making the headlines, join the program. You will learn a lot about football recruiting!