St. Petersburg, Fla.
Dixie Hollins HS
FITZGERALD’S CAREER BESTS:
Total Tackles – 7 (vs. West Virginia, 1999; vs. Temple, 1999)
Solos – 5 (at Penn State, 2001)
Assists – 4 (vs. Temple, 1999)
Pass Break Ups – 3 (at Rutgers, 2000)
2001 (SENIOR): Unheralded cornerback who played in 48 games at Miami and has started 15 contests…won the team’s 2001 Hard Hitter Award, as voted by his teammates…highly regarded player who was a standout reserve throughout the season…finished 11th on the team in tackles with 37 (26 solos)…had four tackles for losses (20 yards), two quarterback sacks (18 yards), intercepted two passes (7 yards), broke up seven passes, and forced three fumbles this season…opened the season with six tackles in the 33-7 win at Penn State…had six tackles, forced two fumbles, and had a quarterback sack in the 61-0 win over Rutgers…forced a fumble on a quarterback sack against Rutgers that was picked up by defensive end John Square and returned for a touchdown…had three stops in the win at Pittsburgh…had four tackles, two for losses, one quarterback sack and broke up two passes in the win over Troy State…made four tackles, forced one fumble, broke up a pass and scooped up a blocked punt and returned it for a touchdown in Miami’s 49-27 win at Florida State that snapped the Seminoles’ 54-game unbeaten streak at home…that punt was blocked by Edward Reed and Fitzgerald ran it back five yards for a score to give Miami a 7-0 lead in the first quarter…had five tackles in the 45-3 win over West Virginia…intercepted a pass and had three tackles, in addition to breaking up three passes, in the 18-7 win at Boston College…had two tackles in a 59-0 win over Syracuse…made one tackle in the win at Virginia Tech…made two tackles, forced a fumble and broke up a pass in Miami’s 37-14 win over Nebraska in the Rose Bowl… has extraordinary quickness and coverage ability…a valuable contributor on special teams, he blocked a punt against Washington last season…lightning quick player that can make up space in a hurry…has recorded a 36-inch vertical leap with a 4.5 time in the 40 during conditioning and strength tests…has extensive experience as a starter, drawing 15 starting assignments during his UM career.
2000 (JUNIOR): Played in every game both as a cornerback and in nickel and dime coverage situations…showed a knack for making big plays both on defense and special teams…Had a blocked punt in the loss at Washington…produced his best game of the season against Rutgers with five tackles, a pass interception and three passes broken up…was used almost exclusively in dime coverages during last half of the season…picked off his second interception of the season in a 42-31 win over Louisiana Tech…made two unassisted tackles in Miami’s 37-20 win over Florida in the Nokia Sugar Bowl.
1999 (SOPHOMORE): Played in eight games, earning four starts…recorded 31 tackles, 16 solo…tallied one interception, two pass breakups and forced one fumble…registered four tackles at Boston College in Miami’s, 31-28, come-from-behind victory…had a career-high seven tackles, including one for a loss, and an interception against West Virginia…posted back-to-back five tackle games against Pittsburgh and Virginia Tech…recorded three tackles in Miami’s, 55-0, win over Rutgers…had a career-high tying seven tackles against Temple.
1998 (FRESHMAN): Hard-hitting defensive back who started nine games at left corner…appeared in every game…did not start in Rutgers and Florida State games…was fifth among DBs with 34 tackles…five pass break-ups was third highest on team…turned in a season best six tackles against FSU…broke up a pass in win over UCLA…recovered a fumble vs. East Tennessee State…had a pair of pass break-ups against Pittsburgh.
1997 (REDSHIRT): Appeared in first three games…received medical redshirt after sustaining a foot injury…recorded a solo tackle vs. Arizona State.
HIGH SCHOOL: Dixie Hollins…one of the top high school players in the state of Florida…PrepStar and SuperPrep magazine’s All-American…class 5A first-team All-State selection…amassed 110 tackles, five interceptions and four sacks his senior campaign…was named team MVP as a senior, leading Dixie Hollins to an 8-3 record…saw action at defensive back, linebacker, running back and wide receiver during his high school career…also returned kicks…totaled 21 career interceptions…played in Florida-Georgia All-Star game…coached by Todd Wilson.
PERSONAL: Born 4/25/79…liberal arts major…full name is Markese Demetrius Fitzgerald…lists dancing, singing, reading, swimming and playing basketball among interests…chose Miami over Florida State, Ohio State and North Carolina…son of J and Carla Baker.
FITZGERALD’S CAREER STATISTICS
*medical redshirt season