Miami football top WRs asserted themselves during spring

Sep 3, 2022; Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 3, 2022; Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports /

The top wide receivers in the Miami football program asserted themselves during spring practice. A top rotation of Jacolby George, Xavier Restrepo and Colbie Young on the first time and Isaiah Horton, Nathaniel Joseph and Brashard Smith on the second team became apparent throughout the spring for Miami.

Joseph, Restrepo and Smith are all slot receivers. New offensive coordinator Shannon Dawson could have to get creative occasionally to play his best receivers. George had three receptions for 48 yards and two touchdowns in the spring game. Restrepo had four receptions for 79 yards and Young four for 86.

Horton had a 32-yard reception on a contested catch versus transfer cornerback Terry Roberts. Smith who provides experience and speed had a nice catch for a score on Friday. Joseph had at least three receptions for 100 yards including a 79-yard TD reception. Joseph and Smith will compete in the slot behind Restrepo.

The modified air raid led by Dawson should give Miami a more explosive offense in 2023. At times in the spring game on Friday night that showed. David Lake of Inside the U recorded at least eight plays for 20 yards on Friday. George, Restrepo, freshman TE Riley Williams and Young had the receptions on 20-plus yards thrown.

The explosive plays are encouraging for  Miami. Miami tied for 101st nationally in 2022 with only 33 pass plays that went for 20 yards or more. With Dawson as their offensive coordinator in 2022, Houston finished 19th nationally with 55 pass plays of 20 yards or more. Dawson had a proven big-play receiver at Houston.

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Nathaniel Dell finished eighth nationally for Houston in 2022 with 20 receptions of 20 or more yards. Horton, Joseph and Young all have the potential to be big-play receivers for the Miami football team in 2023. Joseph has exceptional elusiveness and speed. Horton at 6’4 and Young at 6’5 provide elite size on contested receptions.