Miami Hurricanes young WRs impressing during spring practice

Dec 5, 2020; Durham, North Carolina, USA;. Mandatory Credit: Nell Redmond-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 5, 2020; Durham, North Carolina, USA;. Mandatory Credit: Nell Redmond-USA TODAY Sports /

After not making an impact during the 2020 season, the young Miami Hurricanes wide receivers have been impressive during spring practice. Keyshawn Smith could make an impact with Miami in 2021 as a deep threat in the passing game. Xavier Restrepo has been compared to former Miami leading receiver Braxton Berrios.

Smith has added 12 to 14 pounds to his 6’1, 182-pound frame according to Miami Hurricanes offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee. Smith had two receptions for 58 yards in 2020. Restrepo had one reception for 12 yards and a short stint as the punt returner with three returns for nine yards.

Restrepo had one punt return each in games against Florida State, Pittsburgh and Virginia Tech last season. When Mark Pope struggled with muffed punts last season Restrepo replaced him. With Miami finishing 123rd out of 127 teams in FBS last season with a 2.2 yards punt return average that will be open for 2021.

During an appearance on the Joe Rose Show on WQAM this spring, Miami offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee praised the development of Smith and Restrepo during spring practice. Lashlee believes that Smith has an opportunity to step up this season and that Restrepo adds depth at WR in 2021.

"“(Smith) He’s 12-14 pounds heavier, a year older, gone through that freshman getting used to things…It gives him an opportunity to make a step up. Xavier Restrepo, you can go on and on with guys down the line — we have more depth.”"

Miami has added seven WRs in their last two signing classes. Mike Harley is entering his last season with Miami after leading the Hurricanes in receptions and receiving yards and tying for the team lead in touchdown receptions in 2020. Miami added Oklahoma transfer, Charleston Rambo, in the offseason.

Next. Miami 2021 WR battle wide open per OC Rhett Lashlee. dark

The Hurricanes also return Mark Pope and Dee Wiggins who will be pushed by the younger WRs on the Miami roster after struggling in 2020. Harley, Pope, Rambo and Wiggins, plus third-year redshirt freshman Jeremiah Payton are eligible for the 2022 NFL Draft. Miami has good depth for the future at WR.