Miami football loses depth with safety Avantae Williams out for season

MIAMI, FL - APRIL 13: . (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images)
MIAMI, FL - APRIL 13: . (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images) /

A report from Christopher Stock from Inside the U quoting head coach Manny Diaz stated that freshman safety Avantae Williams will not play this season for the Miami football team.

Following practice on Tuesday head coach Manny Diaz made the startling announcement that prized four-star freshman safety Avantae Williams will not play for the Miami football team in 2020. Williams will not play because of unspecified chronic and lingering medical issues according to Diaz.

Williams was expected to compete to be the fourth safety for Miami behind senior Amari Carter and juniors Bubba Bolden and Gurvan Hall. The top-ranked signee for Miami in 2020, Williams was second-ranked safety nationally in the 247 Sports composite for 2020. Miami signed three other safeties in the Class of 2020.

Four-star signee Jalen Harrell and three-stars Keshawn Washington who enrolled in January and Brian Balom will have the opportunity to be the primary backup to Bolden, Carter and Hall. Bolden is returning from his own season-ending injury last season but set to be ready to play in 2020.

The loss of Williams is a blow to the depth for Miami on defense. Williams likely would have contributed defensively in 2020 and was expected to be a key player on special teams. The focus for Williams will be on his health, working with strength and conditioning coach David Feely and getting ready for 2021.

"“During Avantae’s preseason exam he presented some chronic and lingering medical issues that our medical staff feels we need to let heal, let him strengthen this fall, and we will re-evaluate him come January in the spring time so Avantae will not compete for us this fall.My disappointment is for Avantae because he loves football. He’s been an amazing football from the first time he ever put on a helmet and it’s just difficult for him to have the season taken away from him. He would do anything to be out there with his guys.We all feel for him, but we know that we’ll do what we can get in a semester, get him with (strength) coach (David) Feeley and do everything we can to get him right.”"

Balom, Harrell and Washington signing with the Miami football program in addition to Williams gave Miami a big group at safety in the class of 2020. That depth is critical now with the loss of Williams. Williams taking the season to sit out and heal should work in his favor long term. The projection will be for Williams to be a starter in 2022.

Next. Miami safeties have bright future led by Avantae Williams. dark

Williams will be a redshirt sophomore in 2020. That will provide him with three potential seasons as a starter if he chooses to stay through his redshirt senior season. Williams will be eligible for the 2023 NFL Draft. At 17 years old, Williams is still extremely young for a freshman. Hopefully, he has a healthy recovery.