DEERFIELD BEACH (CBSMiami) – When Deerfield Beach football players take the field it’s tradition to tap the sign that reads “Buck Pride.”
It’s something wide receiver Xavier Restrepo had to learn this year after transferring from St. Thomas Aquinas. It’s a move this University of Miami Hurricanes commit made so he could get to Coral Gables a semester early.
“It was just mainly just because I wanted to graduate early, be like this (tight) with the coaches, and play as a freshman, you know,” he said.
When Miami fans do eventually see him play, they may get a sense a déjà vu.
“I think when everyone saw you commit to Miami and they saw your size, and your skill set, and your game, they immediately had flashbacks of Braxton Berrios. Is that a guy you look up to? Have you ever met or talked to Braxton?” CBS4’s Mike Cugno asked him.
“Oh no, for sure. At the Paradise Camp, DeeJay Dallas was actually there recording everything, sent it to Brax, and he FaceTimed me. That was a pretty cool experience. I look up to guys like that. Guys in my shoes who are undersized and have that dog mentality on the field,” Restrepo responded.
That dog mentality is something he also carries into the class room. He excels in the classroom and actually turned down some offers to go Ivy League schools.
“It’s just become muscle memory for me. Go to school, get good grades, go to the football field and give the same effort in and out of the classroom,” he said. “To get that call from Harvard was just a blessing you know. To be offered by an Ivy League school and you already know six figures right out of college. That’s just amazing. My mom was very proud and my dad was also.”
The straight-A student also gets an A for effort on the field. He’s played half a dozen positions from quarterback to holder.
“I just use my football IQ. I feel like that’s the biggest part of my game,” he said. “The biggest advantage of my game is my football IQ. So before the plays happen, I know exactly what I’m going to do.”
Congratulations to Xavier Restrepo for becoming a CBS4 Nat Moore Trophy nominee.
Click here if you’d like to submit a nomination for the inaugural CBS4 Nat Moore Trophy, which recognizes the top high school football player in South Florida.