Since being hired as the head coach of the Miami football program in December 2018, head coach Manny Diaz has utilized the transfer portal to upgrade the talent on the Hurricanes roster. Miami added three key transfers this offseason and is ranked as the third-best transfer portal class for 2021.
In-state rival Florida and Oklahoma are the only two programs ranked higher than Miami in an article by 247 Sports identifying “College football’s winners of the 2021 transfer portal.” Oklahoma is ranked ahead of Miami despite losing wide receiver Charleston Rambo to the Hurricanes.
In addition to Rambo, Miami added defensive end, DeAndre Johnson, from Tennessee and cornerback Tyrique Stevenson from Georgia. With 19 starters returning from 2020, Miami did not have to add as many players as they have in past seasons. Johnson, Rambo and Stevenson are all expected to start for Miami.
Defensive end Jaelan Phillips is the only former five-star signee Miami has added in recent years as a transfer. Phillips is expected to be a first-round pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. Safety Bubba Bolden is entering his third season in the Miami football program and quarterback D’Eriq King his second entering 2021.
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“The Hurricanes were an early adopter of the transfer portal under Manny Diaz and it has benefitted the program. The Hurricanes have found contributors in recent years in KJ Osborne, Trevon Hill, D’Eriq King, Jaelan Phillips and Quincy Roche. This haul is likely to be no different.
The Hurricanes signed four-star Georgia cornerback transfer Tyrique Stevenson, who is from Miami. Stevenson is one of the best athletes in the country and should start for Miami. He received a grade of 92. Oklahoma receiver Charleston Rambo gets a grade of 89 after starting for Oklahoma in 2019.
He battled COVID and injury in 2020 but should help an underachieving Miami receiver room. And given the success that Miami has had with numerous transfer pass rushers under Diaz, don’t overlook Tennessee transfer Deandre Johnson, who comes in with a grade of 82.”
No transfer has had a bigger impact for Miami than King. King completed 64.1 percent of his passing attempts in 2020 for 2,686 yards, 23 touchdowns and five interceptions while rushing for 538 yards and four TDs. Miami is hoping for Rambo and Stevenson to have similar impacts in 2021.
Johnson is a projected starter for Miami in 2021, but expect his numbers to be closer to the 9.5 tackles for loss than Hill had in 2019 than the 14.5 TFLs Roche had in 2020. Johnson should be close to the 4.5 sacks Hill and Roche recorded during their one season playing on the Miami football team.
As long as Diaz is the head coach, expect Miami to be active through the transfer portal. With a 14.5 month moratorium on recruiting visits scheduled to end May 31, transfers are expected to increase with the 2021 and ’22 signing classes. Miami signed mostly local players for 2021. Miami only two commits in the 2022 Class.
The Hurricanes at the limit of 25 scholarships including transfers in the Class of 2021. Miami can add transfers later this summer and count those players towards the 2022 class. There are still several highly ranked transfers who have not announced their next destination. Miami could be interested if someone helps improve the roster.