Miami football dominates Florida high school recruiting for 2021

LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY - SEPTEMBER 19: (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY - SEPTEMBER 19: (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /

The Miami football program dominated high school recruiting in Florida with the most four and five-star in-state recruits signed for 2021.

When Manny Diaz was hired as the new Miami football head coach in 2018 he made a point of the Hurricanes needing to dominate South Florida recruiting and bringing back the State of Miami. Miami is well on its way to owning Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties again in high school recruiting.

The State of Miami was a concept began by the godfather of the Miami football program former head coach Howard Schnellenberger. Schnellenberger recognized the wealth of talent the tri-county South Florida area had and continues to develop and christened it the State of Miami added a proverbial fence around it.

The 2021 Miami football signing class is ranked 10th nationally. All but six of the 22 Miami signees are from South Florida. Another two have ties to Miami. Five-star signees, defensive tackle Leonard Taylor and safety James Williams, plus eight four-star 2021 Miami signees are from South Florida.

The Hurricanes signed 11 four and five-star signees from the entire state of Florida for 2021. Four-star striker Chase Smith is from Melbourne in the panhandle. Bud Elliott of 247 Sports, an expert on South Florida recruiting praised Diaz and his staff in an article examining the 2021 signing classes within Florida.

"Miami is the top Florida recruiter“Miami clearly made a big jump in in-state recruiting in 2021. The main reason for this is the relationships coach Manny Diaz and his staff have made with local prospects over the years, as well as the improved play from the Hurricanes on the field.But the Hurricanes also benefitted from the recruiting lockdown, in that local prospects were unable to take paid visits to schools throughout the nation, but could go visit the Miami campus, even if they could not meet with coaches in-person.Signing 11 four- and five-star prospects from Florida is almost as much as its last two hauls combined (13)….It’s a heck of a haul which should set up Miami to contend for the ACC Coastal and challenge for the conference in the coming years.”"

Taylor and Williams will pace the Miami defense for at least the next three years. On the offensive side, four-star wide receivers Romello Brinson, Jacolby George and Breshard Smith, running back Thad Franklin and tackle Michael McLaughlin are among the four-star players Miami signed from South Florida.

"Schools who signed Four and Five Stars from Florida for 202111 Miami6 Florida5 Alabama3 Clemson3 Mississippi3 Florida State2 LSU2 Auburn2 Texas A&M2 Notre Dame1 UGA1 Oklahoma1 Maryland1 USC1 Michigan1 Arizona State1 Arkansas1 Georgia Tech"

Diaz has spoken frequently about the relationships that Miami has made with the players who signed for 2021. Diaz went into detail during his signing day press conference about the four-year process of recruiting Willams. The shutdown of recruiting in 2021 also helped Miami tremendously.

Next. Miami one of four schools with two signees in top 15. dark

Without the ability of recruits to make official visits, the Miami football program was able to sign players close to home. UCLA and USC and maybe Georgia Tech are the only programs nationally with as much talent as close to their campus as Miami has. If Diaz and his staff can continue to sign elite local players the future is bright.