Miami football: 4 wide receivers separating themselves

Sep 1, 2023; Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 1, 2023; Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports /

Jacolby George, Isaiah Horton, Xavier Restrepo and Colbie Young have separated themselves from the rest of the wide receivers on the Miami football roster. Those four combined for 152 snaps and 21 of the 25 targets from Tyler Van Dyke and Emory Williams in the 38-3 Miami win over Miami (Ohio) on Friday night.

George led the Miami football team with seven targets and six receptions for 56 yards while playing 44 snaps. Restrepo had five receptions on six targets for 68 yards while leading Miami WRs with 48 snaps. Young had four receptions for a team-leading 79 yards and the sole touchdown reception in 29 snaps.

Horton had one reception for five yards on four targets and played 31 snaps. The other Miami WRs who received snaps versus Miami (Ohio) per Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald are “Brashard Smith 17, freshman Ray Ray Joseph 15, Harrell 13 and Frank Ladson 4.” Shermar Kirk, Michael Redding and Robby Washington did not play.

The rotation at WR can evolve throughout the season. It is clear George, Horton, Restrepo and Young are the top receivers after week one. George, Restrepo and Young being the starting WRs, three most targeted pass catches and leading Miami in receiving was expected entering the season.

Miami will face a Texas A&M defense that held New Mexico to 16-28 for 131 yards, no TDs and one interception on Saturday in a 52-10 win. The top two receivers for New Mexico had 42 yards. Expect Tyler Van Dyke to look for matchups each week to determine the go-to receiver.

When he is healthy, Restrepo has been the go-to receiver for Van Dyke out of the slot. Horton and Young provide Van Dyke and the Miami quarterbacks with an excellent catch radius on the outside. George can play outside or in the slot and excels in making difficult catches. Miami will have to challenge Texas A&M downfield.

Restrepo had two receptions of 20 yards or more versus Miami (Ohio). Young had two receptions of at least 15 yards versus the Redhawks. Freshman tight end Riley Williams had the other Miami reception of at least 15 yards from freshman QB Emory Williams. Texas A&M allowed only four pass plays of 10 yards or more versus UNM.

Tyler Van Dyke efficient, can improve versus Texas A&M. dark. Next

Miami did not have Restrepo in a 17-9 loss at Texas A&M in 2022. The Miami WRs had 12 receptions for 126 yards in the loss at Texas A&M last year. George has three receptions for 41 yards versus the Aggies in 2022 leading the WRs on the 2023 Miami roster. Miami needs the WRs to produce on Saturday.