Entering his fifth season in the Miami Hurricanes football program, Mike Harley is becoming a leader and mentor to the wide receivers corps. Harley led Miami with 57 receptions for 799 yards and tied for the team lead with former Hurricanes tight end Brevin Jordan with seven touchdown receptions in 2020.
The remainder of the Miami Hurricanes WRs were plagued with drops and inconsistency throughout the 2020 season. Mark Pope and Dee Wiggins had career seasons in 2020 but left too many receptions on the field because of drops. Pope was a borderline five-star signee in 2018 who has yet to reach his potential in college.
Pope was third on Miami with 33 receptions for 403 yards and two TDs in 2020. Wiggins had 31 receptions for 358 yards and three TDs last season. Expect Oklahoma transfer, Charleston Rambo, to earn one of the starting spots at WR opposite Harley in 2021. Pope or Wiggins would lose their first-team status from 2020.
The returnees and 2021 signees Romello Brinson, Jacolby George and Breshard Smith could also push for playing time. Sophomore Keyshawn Smith who had two receptions for 58 yards as a freshman is a WR to watch in 2021. The Miami coaches like Smith’s ability to separate from defenders. Harley discussed the Miami WRs.
"“No doubt those guys are hungry. I talk to our offensive coaches and told them that everyone should have a fair chance. That’s what the coaches say they’re going to do and starting this offseason we’re in the weight room pushing and then when we get to the spring it’s going to speak for itself.The young guys are hungry and they’re hard-workers. When their chance comes, they’re going to capitalize on it.”"
Entering the second year with Rhett Lashlee as offensive coordinator and return of D’Eriq King at quarterback, the Miami offense should improve in 2021. For the Miami offense to continue to improve and develop the WRs need to play at a higher level in 2021. Harley’s confidence is befitting of a good leader.
Harley and Rambo provide Miami with a WR tandem with a high upside. If one or two other WRs have breakout seasons for Miami the Hurricanes offense can become explosive in 2021. Lashlee is thought of as one of the best offensive minds in college football. Like any coach, he is only as good as how well his players perform.