Miami football recruiting 13th among Power 5 last 20 years

Oxbridge Academy football player Travis Homer signed with the University of Miami on National Signing Day in West Palm Beach, Florida on February 3, 2016.
Oxbridge Academy football player Travis Homer signed with the University of Miami on National Signing Day in West Palm Beach, Florida on February 3, 2016. /

The Miami football program ranks 13th among Power Five football programs in recruiting over the last 20 years according to Rivals.Com. Those rankings would have begun with the 2002 signing class that came about a month after Miami won its fifth National Championship following a 37-14 Rose Bowl win over Nebraska.

Amazingly the Miami recruiting classes accumulatively ranked first in the ACC over the last 20 seasons. Clemson who had dominated the ACC since 2015 came in 16th. The Tigers didn’t emerge as an ACC Power until 2011 and national power until losing to Alabama in the College Football Playoff Title Game after the 2015 season.

Miami had an average class ranking of 14.7 over the last 20 seasons per the Rivals rankings. The Hurricanes were one spot ahead of Notre Dame whose average class ranking was 14.9. Clemson was 16th with their average recruiting class finishing 18.25 per year. Georgia with an average class of 6.45 topped the rankings.

The Bulldogs were led by former Miami quarterback and head coach Mark Richt for 14 of those 20 seasons that evaluated the recruiting rankings. Richt was also the Miami head coach for the Hurricanes recruiting classes from 2016 through 2019. Shortly after the early signing period in December 2018, Richt retired.

Return of DL coach Jess Simpson keeps recruiting strong in Georgia. light. Related Story

Alabama finished third on the Rivals list with an average class of eighth. Those numbers have to be broken down before and after Nick Saban left the Dolphins for Tuscaloosa. Alabama signed the 30th, 48th, 15th, 18th and 11th ranked classes in the five seasons prior to Saban under Mike Shula and Dennis Franchione.

The Crimson Tide’s first class under Saban in 2007 ranked 10th. Since then, Alabama has signed the top-ranked class nine times, finished second twice and has never been lower than seventh. Those are numbers nearly impossible for other programs to reach other than Clemson, Georgia and maybe LSU.

Manny Diaz has done a good job in the last two recruiting cycles. The Hurricanes were 10th in the Rivals rankings in 2021 and 13th in 2020. The 2019 class which was primarily signed by Richt in the early signing period in December finished 35th. For his first two full classes, Diaz has thrived by signing top 15 classes.

Four-star quarterback Jacurri Brown is the only commit Miami has for 2022. Diaz said earlier this spring to expect June to be manic for commitments. The NCAA dropped the moratorium on official visits beginning June 1 for the first time since March 2020. Miami begins the month with a cookout on June 1.

Paradise Camp will occur on the weekend of June 26. Recruiting is returning to a sense of normalcy. Diaz has returned the emphasis to signing the best players in South Florida. In 2021, Miami signed 10 of the top 24 players from Dade, Broward and Palm Beach Counties combined.

Next. Miami football aiming big with safeties. dark

If Miami averaged signing the 11.5 best recruiting class as they have under Diaz for the 20-year span examined by Rivals, they would have been three places higher in the rankings ahead of Auburn, Tennessee and Michigan. Diaz and his staff are adding talent to the Miami football roster. It needs to translate on the field.