Miami football recruiting: Francis Mauigoa commits as Hurricanes land No. 1 OT prospect in 2023 class

The No. 1-ranked offensive tackle in the 2023 recruiting class made an Independence Day boom on Monday afternoon when Francis Mauigoa announced his commitment to Miami live on CBS Sports HQ. Mauigoa is a five-star prospect and the No. 9 overall recruit in the class, according to the 247Sports Composite rankings.

Standing at 6-foot-5 and 330 pounds, the American Samoa native also considered Alabama, Florida, Tennessee, USC and Hawaii. He visited all five of his finalists in June after earning MaxPreps Junior All-American honors at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida, during his 2021 high school season. Ultimately, the Hurricanes won out for the prized quarterback protector.

“I’m very close with the Miami staff because I was close with them when they were at Oregon,” Mauigoa told 247Sports. “I developed a great relationship with coach Cristobal and coach Mirabal (OL coach) and talked to them all the time. The whole staff recruited me hard, though it wasn’t just them. I feel like someone from the staff would reach out to me every day and I really have a strong comfort level at the school too.”

With Mauigoa’s commitment, Miami’s recruiting class jumped seven spots to No. 8 nationally in the 247Sports team rankings. Given his lofty ranking and family track record at the Power Five level, Mauigoa has the makings of an early contributor at the next level. His brother, Frederick Mauigoa, played center at Washington State from 2016-19 and started his final three seasons. Another brother, Francisco Mauigoa, will be a sophomore linebacker for the Cougars this season after racking up 17 tackles last season as a true freshman.

After playing in California and American Samoa earlier in his high school career, Mauigoa transferred in to IMG Academy and played right tackle as a junior while teaming up with four-star Class of 2022 tackle Tyler Booker, who played left tackle and signed with Alabama.

Here is the full evaluation of Francis Mauigoa’s game from 247Sports southeast recruiting analyst Andrew Ivins:

A massive lineman out of American Samoa that moves different than most people his size. At one point considered himself more of a pass rusher by trade, but has started to embrace the idea of ​​protecting quarterbacks for a living instead of trying to sack them. Tested in the upper percentile for someone that’s pushing 6-foot-5, 330 pounds as he went 5.3 on the lasers in the 40-yard dash and added a 4.7 in the short shuttle the spring before his junior year. A bully of spells that uses his raw power to simply overwhelm defenders. At his best when he can just fire out of his stance and drive block as he uses a wide base to establish leverage. Not one to give up on a play and will try to find extra work. Can gain depth with his kick step and win with a strong punch, but must improve as a pass blocker, especially if he’s going to be asked to protect the corner on Saturdays. Spent much of junior season at IMG Academy working at right tackle. A lack of true length in the upper half, however, suggests that his future might ultimately be on the inside, which works given his ability to pull and put a would-be tackler on his back. Should be viewed as a potential multi-year starter on the offensive line for a Power 5 program like his brother, who started over 30 games at center for Washington State and was named to the Rimington Award watch list. Will likely need some time to find his bearings, and must keep progressing from a technical standpoint, but fluid movement patterns and smash-mouth play style in the phone booth could have him eventually being selected early on in the NFL Draft.

When Mauigoa was a high school sophomore, he was evaluated as a two-way player and regarded as more dominant on defense. But given his elite position ranking as an offensive tackle, it seems his permanent positional home will be as a quarterback protector.

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