Orlando Olympia running back Dexter Williams was not surprised to receive a college football scholarship offer Monday. He was surprised by who was offering.
Williams, who will be one of the top running backs in the state entering his senior season next year, received his first offer from the Miami Hurricanes and running backs coach Hurlie Brown, an offer that has taken a long time to develop.
Many coaches from the Orlando area had recently expressed their surprise at Williams' lack of an offer. Williams, a 6-foot-1, 190-pound runner who is ranked No. 13 in the latest Sentinel 2015 Central Florida Super60, is a big-bodied back with great speed and he's hard to bring down.
"I wasn't expecting Miami to come out and offer me already. I was just really waiting on any offer really," Williams said. "I'm glad they actually offered me. It means a lot.
"I figured I would get an offer someday, but I just didn't know by who. I do fell like I've been under-rated. It just forces me to work harder."
He answered a lot of questions about his speed this past Saturday when he posted the top score of all participants at the Nike SPARQ Combine at Lake Brantley.
Williams had an overall score of 117, with his best events being the 40-yard dash, in which he ran in 4.54 seconds, and the vertical leap, in which he measured out at 40 inches despite cold, rainy conditions. He also had a power ball toss of 35 feet and a 5-10-5-yard shuttle time of 4.08 seconds.
"Saturday's performance, to be honest, I had my mind set on that already when I got there," Williams said. "I was ready. I was like, 'I'm going to go ahead and try to get to The Opening.' It was my first actual combine and I just said I was going to give it all I got and I woke up, got ready and got my mind set. I did what I had to do."
Williams was not immediately invited to Nike's mid-summer event, The Opening, a competition to which the top prospects from across the country are invited to attend.
Williams has been overshadowed a bit in the Orlando area being in the same class as Timber Creek's star running back Jacques Patrick. Williams ran for 1,072 yards on 180 carries last season with just three touchdowns.
During his first two seasons at Olympia, he was behind the speedy Johnny Armstrong, who is now at Wake Forest.
"My junior year was really the first year of actually getting to play a full season of varsity football and getting experience of getting the ball all the time without sitting out," Williams said. "It was a good time and next year I'm just hoping for even better ... coming out with a big bang. I'm getting ready for next season now."
He admits he's heard enough about the accomplishments of Patrick.
"We been playing ball since we were little and it was always about me and him," Williams said of Patrick. "And then all the sudden he got so big in high school and everybody started talking about Jacques Patrick, Jacques Patrick .. now I'm just trying to get to the level where I can prove I'm better than Jacques, or I am at least on his level and can perform on the same level as him."
He said UM's Brown was extremely complimentary of his game while he talked to the Hurricanes assistant coach on the phone.
"It went real well. He was telling me I would be a good fit for the offense and they need me," said Williams. "He said he likes the way I play, that I have good talent and he wants to get a chance to meet me and the family and all that."
Chris Hays is the Sentinel's recruiting coverage coordinator and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow us on Twitter at @Os_Recruiting and Facebook at Orlando Sentinel Recruiting, Instagram at os_recruiting and on Pinterest at Orlando Recruiting.