Posted: 1:14 pm Monday, July 20th, 2009

The curious case of Pahokee’s Raheam Buxton, a Miami commit 

By Jason Lieser

Pahokee senior Raheam Buxton’s career with the Blue Devils has been marked by injury, ineligibility, immaturity, a major position change and a lot of time on the bench.

And now, before he has put together even one solid season, Buxton has a scholarship offer to the University of Miami. Buxton was on the brink of announcing his intent to play for the Hurricanes last week, but canceled those plans in order to visit the campus again. Blue Devils coach Blaze Thompson said today Buxton committed to Miami over the weekend.

He has very few other offers, Thompson said two weeks ago, and those were from a handful of small schools like Western Michigan and Eastern Illinois. Miami was by the far the biggest program to pursue Buxton.

Pahokee was traveling last week for the Nike 7On tournament in Oregon, and Thompson has not returned phone calls since Nike dismissed his team from the tourney for a “code of conduct” violation.

When quarterback Anthony Sheppard led Pahokee to the 2007 state championship, Buxton was his back-up and played sparingly. Last year he was listed as a quarterback and defensive back but saw limited action as well, though he did make a couple of nice plays on special teams and defense in the Muck Bowl.

Raheam Buxton after last year's emotional state championship game (Allen Eyestone/The Post)

Raheam Buxton after last year's emotional state championship game (Allen Eyestone/The Post)


In the recent spring session, Pahokee moved Buxton to safety full time and saw his stock rise. He is 6-1, 180 and runs the 40-yard dash in 4.5 seconds. Thompson said those physical gifts, combined with his strong performance in the Blue Devils’ spring game win over Lauderdale Lakes-Boyd Anderson. It has been an impressive and rapid rise. Thompson said Buxton’s grades are up as well and scored respectably on the ACT.

Buxton is the fifth Pahokee player from the 2010 graduating class to do so. Wide receiver De’Joshua Johnson (Florida State), linebacker Zachary Allen (Wake Forest), defensive back Merrill Noel (Florida State) and wide receiver Fred Pickett (West Virginia) already have committed.

Uncommitted Blue Devils include wide receiver Chris Dunkley (No. 3 on the Big Board), defensive tackle Richard Ash (No. 10), two-way lineman Antonio Ford (No. 17) and offensive lineman Willie Bowles (No. 27).