Hurricanes want blue-chip running back Alvin Henderson to be a ‘home-run hitter’ at Miami

Although the Hurricanes do not have a running backs coach in place after Tim Harris Jr.’s departure, Alabama running back Alvin Henderson knows Miami wants him to come to Coral Gables.

The rising senior running back out of Alabama’s Elba High took a visit to UM last weekend for their Elite Prospect Day event, and the Hurricanes’ staff quickly followed up with a visit to his high school on Tuesday.

“They were just letting me know like we consider you as a dude that can come in and be a home-run hitter,” Henderson told the South Florida Sun Sentinel. “When they say come in and be a home-run hitter … They’re telling me there’s a lot of great backs, but you fit everything that we need in our offense. You’re not just a first-down, second-down back. You’re just the type of dude that can come in and you can get it done in any phase of the game: between the tackles, outside, catching the ball, anything we need you to do, and that’s the way our offense needs to feature a back.”

Henderson, a four-star prospect according to 247Sports’ composite rankings, is one of the most productive running backs in Alabama state history. Henderson, who plays in a run-based offense where he takes the snaps, rushed for an eye-popping 3,523 yards and 61 touchdowns last year and was named the Class 1A Back of the Year by the Alabama Sports Writers Association for the second year in a row.

Henderson is listed as the No. 10 running back and No. 176 player in the 2025 class.

The star running back took an unofficial visit to Miami last year, but he said he was excited to get back to Coral Gables for a more in-depth visit last weekend.

“I was kind of excited to get back down there. Coach (Harris) came by my school last Wednesday — obviously, he took the OC job at UCF — but I was fired up about getting down because when I came down during the season, it can be kind of hard to sit down with the position coach and the head coach; of course, I got to do that on the Sunday,” Henderson said. “But this visit I took this past weekend, I was able to — even though there was not a running backs coach, they still made me feel like I was at home. I was able to sit down with (Dennis Smith), coach (Stephen) Field, the receivers coach, coach (Mario) Cristobal and (they) still gave me the feel of how they’re going to utilize and use me and how they consider me coming in and being able to change the program around.”

Henderson said the visit to his school on Tuesday was more of the same, with Miami coaches telling him he is a top priority and they want to see him again after the recruiting dead period ends.

Miami coaches are far from the only ones who have visited Henderson lately. Henderson has also received visits from Alabama, Georgia, Florida State and Penn State recently. He said the coaches taking time to visit him shows that they are the ones who want to recruit him the most.

“It kind of opened up my eyes because I feel like in January, whatever schools came by, those are the schools that are really interested in recruiting you,” Henderson said. “Obviously, coaches plan out their map for where they want to go, and a lot of coaches came by, and I appreciate all the coaches that came because they’re kind of letting you know where I stand with how they feel about me. All of the schools that have come by, I appreciate them and I’m just taking that into the dead period.”

The Hurricanes are currently a big factor in Henderson’s recruitment. He said if he were to list his five top schools now, Miami would be among them. The Hurricanes currently have three players committed in their 2025 class, and the UM staff is trying to show Henderson where he fits in.

“They want to make sure they show me how I’m going to be used and how I can come in and flip the Miami program upside down and get it back to where it used to be,” Henderson said. “Not just me, but this ’25 class. … Coach Cristobal told me (Tuesday they finished third in the ’24 (class). He said it just takes one dude like me to be able to flip the script and get this thing going.”

Henderson said the Miami coaches told him they heard positive things about his character in addition to his football ability, and off-the-field aspects will play a big role in his college decision.

“The most important thing in my recruitment is wherever I go, where am I going to be able to get developed off the field and on the field also,” Henderson said. ” … A set and stable coaching staff, not just going somewhere where I’m wanted to be a football player. I want to go somewhere where I’m just going to be accepted as the person as I am as a whole.”