Miami football expected to add one or two linebackers in next few months

Oct 17, 2020; Morgantown, West Virginia, USA; Mandatory Credit: Ben Queen-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 17, 2020; Morgantown, West Virginia, USA; Mandatory Credit: Ben Queen-USA TODAY Sports /

Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald reported on Tuesday that “people around the program expect a linebacker or two to be added in the months ahead.” The Miami football team has had inconsistent play at LB over the last two seasons. LSU transfer LB Josh White who Miami was pursuing just committed to Baylor.

Miami returns most of its LBs from the 2021 roster and signed four-star Wesley Bissainthe in the Class of 2022. Bissainthe is expected to challenge for first-team on the depth chart. Corey Flagg Jr., Keontra Smith and Waymon Steed who were the three primary LBs in 2021 continue to receive the majority of first-team snaps.

There are several LBs in the transfer portal who have not committed to a new program yet. Former West Virginia LB Josh Chandler is the top transfer LB in 2022 according to On3.Com. Chandler played with Darryl Porter Jr. who transferred to the Miami football program from West Virginia earlier this offseason.

The On3 list has several players that were graded as four stars when they signed out of high school. In addition to Chandler, former Maryland LB Demeioun Robinson was a 2021 signee with the Terapins who is ranked the eighth-best freshman by On3. Robinson is listed as a defensive end by some sites.

Several transfer LBs have ties to Florida and South Florida more specifically and bear watching. Miami also needs to develop from within. Sam Brooks has been injury-plagued throughout his Miami career. Avery Huff was highly touted when he signed with Miami in 2019 but has primarily played on special teams.

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Chase Smith was a striker last season. Smith could play the star position that replaced striker or LB depending on what new LBs coach and co-defensive coordinator Charlie Strong and DC Kevin Steele decide he will be suited to the best. Tirek Austin-Cave, Tyler Johnson and Deshaun Troutman add depth.