School: St Peter’s Prep, Jersey City, N.J.
Height: 6 feet
Weight: 183 pounds
Regional Ranking: 9
Recruiting Update: Fitzpatrick’s offer list includes Florida State, LSU, Maryland, Miami, North Carolina, Ohio State, Penn State, Rutgers, South Carolina, Stanford, Syracuse, Virginia and Wisconsin.
It didn’t take long for Minkah Fitzpatrick to show he belonged with the elite players in the nation when he was at The Opening last month.
He was one of the few class of 2015 prospects in attendance, and while quarterbacks targeted him early, he quickly adjusted and used his length, speed and acceleration to perform well against the best the 2014 class had to offer.
“I did really well at The Opening and the camps I went to,” Fitzpatrick said. “I think I proved that I can play with the top upperclassmen. …I never thought I would be at this point right now (with offers). It’s really exciting and a blessing.”
When Fitzpatrick was a freshman, long-time St. Peter’s Prep coach Rich Hansen said he had a star in the making provided Fitzpatrick continued to work hard in the offseason. That happened, and there were a few areas of concentration the last nine months.
“I kind of worked on everything; my footwork, my press, my zone,” Fitzpatrick said. “I was more comfortable playing press and cover 3. I don’t really like playing off man too much. That’s where I have most of my success, playing press or cover 3.”
However, Fitzpatrick really enjoys press coverage.
“I’m aggressive and I like to use my size and my length and mess up the timing between the receiver and the cornerback,” he said. “Once once that is messed up, the receiver has to change his route and that’s never a good thing for (the offense).”
Fitzpatrick ran the 40-yard dash in 4.67 seconds at The Opening. His shuttle was 4.05 seconds and he had a 37.4 inch vertical jump. As a sophomore, he made 21 tackles and had 12 pass break-ups.
Fitzpatrick has length, runs well, has good acceleration and can stay hip-to-hip on receivers down the field. He is natural in his backpedal and drives well toward the ball. He also turns his hips quickly and comes in and out of breaks. He needs to add strength but he has the tools to be an elite cornerback.