The Blueprint (Offense)

The Blueprint (Offense)

DMoney
Recruiting is an inexact science. Fans don’t have the answers, but we can try to identify trends both nationally and at Miami. Below is one attempt to collect these trends by position and see how they apply to the Canes. The defensive list is here.

QB

THE TRENDS: The last three Heisman winners played multiple sports in high school. So did the best QBs in the league. Recruiting services overlooked these prospects in favor of specialized passers with private coaches. But multisport kids compete year-round instead of just training. This leads to mental and physical development. Butch Davis fell in love with Ken Dorsey watching him on the basketball court.

Multisport athletes have untapped upside. Urban Meyer said Dwayne Haskins came in way ahead of Joe Burrow, but Burrow (Ohio’s Mr. Basketball) improved at a more rapid pace. Of all the sports, baseball players tend to make the best QBs. Mahomes, Wilson, Brady and Murray are just a few examples. At the plate, they learn to deal with failure and move on to the next at-bat. On the mound, they make 100 decisions every game. Both experiences translate well to QB.

Texas is hands-down the best state for quarterbacks. D’Eriq King is the latest example. We always need to be aware of the Texas crop. What people may not realize is that Florida actually produced the second-most NFL QBs for the past decade. South Florida alone produced seven pros. South Florida QBs have the unique advantage of throwing to D1 WRs and competing against D1 DBs. And like multisport kids, they have untapped upside once they receive college coaching.

The local prospects with NFL size and arm strength—Lamar Jackson, Teddy Bridgewater, Jacoby Brissett, Geno Smith—should be no-brainer offers. And there is a long list of G5 types who put up huge numbers in college, including Winky Flowers, Brandon Doughty, Mike White, Rakeem Cato and Buckshot Calvert. Those prospects are perfect to take as a second QB in a class, as they won’t scare off the big names and can produce in a spread offense.

HOW DOES MIAMI STACK UP: Tyler Van Dyke checks every box as a multisport QB. He played basketball, baseball and football. He was the best pitcher in his region and an excellent hitter. For 2021, the two names we know (Jay Allen and Jake Garcia) represent opposite sides of the coin. Allen is the raw three-sport athlete from Florida, Garcia is the polished California recruiting darling. South Florida has been in a QB slump for a few years, with only five schools starting local QBs (Michigan, FSU, Texas Tech, Tulane, Central Michigan). However, the next three classes appear loaded with talented passers.

RB

THE TRENDS: This gameplan is simple: sign the best backs in South Florida. There are ten local backs in the NFL right now, including five starters. Dalvin Cook is the best running back in the NFL and Khalil Herbert of Virginia Tech (via American Heritage) is one of the premier backs in the country. There is no need to look elsewhere unless it is an Adrian Peterson-type freak.

HOW DOES MIAMI STACK UP: Miami has mostly taken care of business and produced pros. The major exception is 2014. FSU won the Dalvin Cook battle and controlled the state for the next three years. Last year, Miami signed the best backs in Dade and Broward with Don Chaney and Jaylan Knighton. Both are already major contributors. Thad Franklin is the prize this year and he’s committed to the Canes.

WR

THE TRENDS: Wide receiver is quickly becoming the second-most important position in college football. Alabama and LSU revolutionized the SEC with their passing games, and Clemson has a claim as the WRU of this era. Amari Cooper, Calvin Ridley, Jerry Jeudy, Henry Ruggs, DeVonta Smith, Jaylen Waddle, Ja’Marr Chase, Jarvis Landry, Odell Beckham Jr., Sammy Watkins, Mike Williams and DeAndre Hopkins were all blue-chip, highly recruited wide receivers. It has become an arms race.

In addition to landing blue-chip talent, we should focus on intangibles. Miami has signed a ton of HS All-American WRs since 2001, but too many have lacked the necessary work ethic and love for the game. The few guys that have succeeded (like Allen Hurns) have had the right attitude. Wide receiver is a craftsman’s position, and with current NCAA rules you need to work on your game away from the coaches. Competitive demeanor is also important. DK Metcalf and Chase Claypool are freaks, but they outplayed their second-round grades because they compete. Metcalf made the hustle play of the year and Claypool is a demon on coverage units.

Elite WRs come from everywhere, but South Florida continues to be a pipeline. Elijah Moore (STA) and TuTu Atwell (Northwestern) are two of the best receivers in the country. One trend with successful South Florida sleepers (Antonio Brown, TY Hilton, John Brown, Marquise Brown) is that they have punt return ability, which translates to clean releases, running after the catch, making sharp cuts and tracking the ball.

HOW DOES MIAMI STACK UP: Poorly. Miami’s local signees have disappointed, and its national signees have left. This was not an attractive offense for recruits. Dugans also made some bad evaluations. The ’20 and ’21 classes look improved but someone needs to emerge as a true #1. Success breeds success. Amari Cooper was the next Julio Jones, Calvin Ridley was the next Amari Cooper, Jerry Jeudy was the next Calvin Ridley, and now Jacorey Brooks is the next Jerry Jeudy. As for sleepers, Malik Rutherford of Champagnat (GT commit) and Vinson Davis of American Heritage fit the mold of quick, tough local ballers.


TE

THE TRENDS: Tight end is the most unique position in recruiting. Two of the most prolific players in the history of the position didn’t even play college football. Many played different positions in high school. It requires a unique skillset and body-type. Six of the eight first-round TEs since 2014 were three-stars or below. All six of those three-stars weighed 220 pounds or less in high school (Hockenson, Fant, Hurst, Engram, Njoku, Ebron). Tight ends often make major physical leaps in college. George Kittle, barely recruited out of Norman, OK, measured at 6’4, 205 out of high school with a 4.86 forty and 27.5-inch vertical. He ended up at 6’4, 247, 4.52 with a 35-inch vertical.

HOW DOES MIAMI STACK UP: Miami should recruit nationally and expect to sign the best guys. Elijah Arroyo is a great example, as are Jordan and Mallory. It’s also a great position to land late-bloomers with a second schollie. Analysts and interns can earn their stripes by identifying every 6’4+ athlete with receiving skills. Because body type and growth potential are so critical at the position, in-person evaluations are key. Many of the future first rounders looked undersized on grainy HUDL tape. Get them down here and size them up. That’s how we got Herndon.

OL

THE TRENDS: Jeff Stoutland already showed us the formula: recruit the big cities and focus on NFL body types. Small towns produce great linemen, but the good ones aren’t always a culture fit at Miami. They’re much more likely to sign with Big 10 and SEC schools. Signing linemen from Iowa doesn’t help if you’re getting Zach Dykstra and Matt Pipho.

In addition to attacking the cities, we need to sign every UM-caliber OL close to home. Believe it or not, Miami has produced NFL OL at a Top 5 rate since 2004. Of those drafted linemen, 77% of them came from South Florida. The local crop will only improve now that there are no weight limits in youth football.

When you look at high school measurables for Day 1- 2 picks, the traits that keep coming up are height and shuttle times. Recent three-star success stories like Chris Lindstrom, Cody Ford, Jonah Jackson, Matt Hennessy, Ezra Cleveland and Erik McCoy averaged a 4.78 shuttle between them. Some of these NFL sleepers are converted basketball players or oversized skill guys like Tytus Howard (QB) and Garrett Bradbury (TE). As with TE, a good recruiting assistant should be on top of these jumbo athletes to get them on campus for further evaluation.

It goes without saying that OL need to be smart and tough. That’s why it’s so important to identify intriguing kids early and evaluate them at camp. James Pogorelc’s freakish measurables (6’7, 270, 4.68 shuttle) and Opening film were public record for months before he got an FBS offer. Butch Barry ignored my emails about him. Once his senior film came out, Pogorelc got a Stanford offer and became a 4* on 247. The time in between was an opportunity to get him on campus.

HOW DOES MIAMI STACK UP: We’re getting better. Jalen Rivers (Jacksonville) and Chris Washington (Nasvhille) are tackle bodies with quality shuttle times. Garin Justice has also done well in South Florida after his predecessor allowed LSU and Clemson to poach the region.

One area where we are lacking is body types. We have three centers on the interior right now and potentially two more in this class (Seymore and Rodriguez). An intriguing option is 6’7, 310 Austin Barber of Jacksonville. The best recruit might be a healthy, conditioned Navaughn Donaldson. His high school size and shuttle (6’6, 345, 4.78) are comparable to 2020 first-round picks Jedrick Wills (6’5, 318, 4.75), Andrew Thomas (6’5, 326, 4.61) and Tristan Wirfs (6’5, 290, 5.03).
 

Comments (40)

1. Not sure why we can't seem to prioritize Jay Allen.
2. Basketball, basketball, basketball. Find tall, skinnier hoopsters, turn them into WRs. Find tall, medium-sized hoopsters, turn them into TEs. Find tall, bulky hoopsters, turn them into OLs and DLs. There's only 5 starters on a basketball team, and 22 starters on a football team. Show these kids the pathway forward.
 
Recruiting is an inexact science. Fans don’t have the answers, but we can try to identify trends both nationally and at Miami. Below is one attempt to collect these trends by position and see how they apply to the Canes. The defensive list is here.

QB

THE TRENDS: The last three Heisman winners played multiple sports in high school. So did the best QBs in the league. Recruiting services overlooked these prospects in favor of specialized passers with private coaches. But multisport kids compete year-round instead of just training. This leads to mental and physical development. Butch Davis fell in love with Ken Dorsey watching him on the basketball court.

Multisport athletes have untapped upside. Urban Meyer said Dwayne Haskins came in way ahead of Joe Burrow, but Burrow (Ohio’s Mr. Basketball) improved at a more rapid pace. Of all the sports, baseball players tend to make the best QBs. Mahomes, Wilson, Brady and Murray are just a few examples. At the plate, they learn to deal with failure and move on to the next at-bat. On the mound, they make 100 decisions every game. Both experiences translate well to QB.

Texas is hands-down the best state for quarterbacks. D’Eriq King is the latest example. We always need to be aware of the Texas crop. What people may not realize is that Florida actually produced the second-most NFL QBs for the past decade. South Florida alone produced seven pros. South Florida QBs have the unique advantage of throwing to D1 WRs and competing against D1 DBs. And like multisport kids, they have untapped upside once they receive college coaching.

The local prospects with NFL size and arm strength—Lamar Jackson, Teddy Bridgewater, Jacoby Brissett, Geno Smith—should be no-brainer offers. And there is a long list of G5 types who put up huge numbers in college, including Winky Flowers, Brandon Doughty, Mike White, Rakeem Cato and Buckshot Calvert. Those prospects are perfect to take as a second QB in a class, as they won’t scare off the big names and can produce in a spread offense.

HOW DOES MIAMI STACK UP: Tyler Van Dyke checks every box as a multisport QB. He played basketball, baseball and football. He was the best pitcher in his region and an excellent hitter. For 2021, the two names we know (Jay Allen and Jake Garcia) represent opposite sides of the coin. Allen is the raw three-sport athlete from Florida, Garcia is the polished California recruiting darling. South Florida has been in a QB slump for a few years, with only five schools starting local QBs (Michigan, FSU, Texas Tech, Tulane, Central Michigan). However, the next three classes appear loaded with talented passers.

RB

THE TRENDS: This gameplan is simple: sign the best backs in South Florida. There are ten local backs in the NFL right now, including five starters. Dalvin Cook is the best running back in the NFL and Khalil Herbert of Virginia Tech (via American Heritage) is one of the premier backs in the country. There is no need to look elsewhere unless it is an Adrian Peterson-type freak.

HOW DOES MIAMI STACK UP: Miami has mostly taken care of business and produced pros. The major exception is 2014. FSU won the Dalvin Cook battle and controlled the state for the next three years. Last year, Miami signed the best backs in Dade and Broward with Don Chaney and Jaylan Knighton. Both are already major contributors. Thad Franklin is the prize this year and he’s committed to the Canes.

WR

THE TRENDS: Wide receiver is quickly becoming the second-most important position in college football. Alabama and LSU revolutionized the SEC with their passing games, and Clemson has a claim as the WRU of this era. Amari Cooper, Calvin Ridley, Jerry Jeudy, Henry Ruggs, DeVonta Smith, Jaylen Waddle, Ja’Marr Chase, Jarvis Landry, Odell Beckham Jr., Sammy Watkins, Mike Williams and DeAndre Hopkins were all blue-chip, highly recruited wide receivers. It has become an arms race.

In addition to landing blue-chip talent, we should focus on intangibles. Miami has signed a ton of HS All-American WRs since 2001, but too many have lacked the necessary work ethic and love for the game. The few guys that have succeeded (like Allen Hurns) have had the right attitude. Wide receiver is a craftsman’s position, and with current NCAA rules you need to work on your game away from the coaches. Competitive demeanor is also important. DK Metcalf and Chase Claypool are freaks, but they outplayed their second-round grades because they compete. Metcalf made the hustle play of the year and Claypool is a demon on coverage units.

Elite WRs come from everywhere, but South Florida continues to be a pipeline. Elijah Moore (STA) and TuTu Atwell (Northwestern) are two of the best receivers in the country. One trend with successful South Florida sleepers (Antonio Brown, TY Hilton, John Brown, Marquise Brown) is that they have return ability, which translates to clean releases, running after the catch, making sharp cuts and tracking the ball.

HOW DOES MIAMI STACK UP: Poorly. Miami’s local signees have disappointed, and its national signees have left. This was not an attractive offense for recruits. Dugans also made some bad evaluations. The ’20 and ’21 classes look improved but someone needs to emerge as a true #1. Success breeds success. Amari Cooper was the next Julio Jones, Calvin Ridley was the next Amari Cooper, Jerry Jeudy was the next Calvin Ridley, and now Jacorey Brooks is the next Jerry Jeudy. As for sleepers, Malik Rutherford of Champagnat (GT commit) and Vinson Davis of American Heritage fit the mold of quick, tough local ballers.


TE

THE TRENDS: Tight end is the most unique position in recruiting. Two of the most prolific players in the history of the position didn’t even play college football. Many played different positions in high school. It requires a unique skillset and body-type. Six of the eight first-round TEs since 2014 were three-stars or below. All six of those three-stars weighed 220 pounds or less in high school (Hockenson, Fant, Hurst, Engram, Njoku, Ebron). Tight ends often make major physical leaps in college. George Kittle, barely recruited out of Norman, OK, measured at 6’4, 205 out of high school with a 4.86 forty and 27.5-inch vertical. He ended up at 6’4, 247, 4.52 with a 35-inch vertical.

HOW DOES MIAMI STACK UP: Miami should recruit nationally and expect to sign the best guys. Elijah Arroyo is a great example, as are Jordan and Mallory. It’s also a great position to land late-bloomers with a second schollie. Analysts and interns can earn their stripes by identifying every 6’4+ athlete with receiving skills. Because body type and growth potential are so critical at the position, in-person evaluations are key. Many of the future first rounders looked undersized on grainy HUDL tape. Get them down here and size them up. That’s how we got Herndon.

OL

THE TRENDS: Jeff Stoutland already showed us the formula: recruit the big cities and focus on NFL body types. Small towns produce great linemen, but the good ones aren’t always a culture fit at Miami. They’re much more likely to sign with Big 10 and SEC schools. Signing linemen from Iowa doesn’t help if you’re getting Zach Dykstra and Matt Pipho.

In addition to attacking the cities, we need to sign every UM-caliber OL close to home. Believe it or not, Miami has produced NFL OL at a Top 5 rate since 2004. Of those drafted linemen, 77% of them came from South Florida. The local crop will only improve now that there are no weight limits in youth football.

When you look at high school measurables for Day 1- 2 picks, the traits that keep coming up are height and shuttle times. Recent three-star success stories like Chris Lindstrom, Cody Ford, Jonah Jackson, Matt Hennessy, Ezra Cleveland and Erik McCoy averaged a 4.78 shuttle between them. Some of these NFL sleepers are converted basketball players or oversized skill guys like Tytus Howard (QB) and Garrett Bradbury (TE). As with TE, a good recruiting assistant should be on top of these jumbo athletes to get them on campus for further evaluation.

It goes without saying that OL need to be smart and tough. That’s why it’s so important to identify intriguing kids early and evaluate them at camp. James Pogorelc’s freakish measurables (6’7, 270, 4.68 shuttle) and Opening film were public record for months before he got an FBS offer. Butch Barry ignored my emails about him. Once his senior film came out, Pogorelc got a Stanford offer and became a 4* on 247. The time in between was an opportunity to get him on campus.

HOW DOES MIAMI STACK UP: We’re getting better. Jalen Rivers (Jacksonville) and Chris Washington (Nasvhille) are tackle bodies with quality shuttle times. Garin Justice has also done well in South Florida after his predecessor allowed LSU and Clemson to poach the region.

One area where we are lacking is body types. We have three centers on the interior right now and potentially two more in this class (Seymore and Rodriguez). One potential option is 6’7, 310 Austin Barber of Jacksonville. The best recruit might be a healthy, conditioned Navaughn Donaldson. His high school size and shuttle (6’6, 345, 4.78) are comparable to 2020 first-round picks Jedrick Wills (6’5, 318, 4.75), Andrew Thomas (6’5, 326, 4.61) and Tristan Wirfs (6’5, 290, 5.03).
So based off this, 6-1 is legit. We check most boxes.
 
I'm going to just quickly respond in this thread to both Blueprints.

First...good posts.

Secondly...the four position groups that are paramount to success in college football from a recruiting perspective...QB, WR, DL, and CB.

Miami has struggled getting up-to-standard quarterback play for a long while. Finally getting D'Eriq King has changed Miami's outcomes in games I feel they would have traditionally lost under Shannon, Golden, Richt, Diaz. You always need to recruit HS seniors here, but more and more, we need to be grinding the portal for QBs. King's success should help us out here.

Miami has done very well on the defensive line, but I can't help but point out that at the college level, there is a distinct difference in the quality of Miami's DL and Ohio State-Alabama-Clemson. There is a level of savagery and athleticism the latter teams have that we do not. I don't believe its in Miami's budget to close that gap, but we've done well enough here lately, its not as big of a deal. It should be noted, that our two starting ends are transfers and we are lacking a little bit as a team this season getting to the QB.

WR and DB are simpatico. Its an arms race that we simply do not have the budget to keep up with. We couple it with really poor evaluation and player development. Likens is a nice step forward. You can see some of these guys getting better. But we need a talent infusion, too. We need to get back to the point we can get Jacorey Brooks and Marcus Rosemy to stay home. Cornerback is a mess. We don't need to get'em all, but we need to hit on some of these big time players and then get them into the NFL.
 
1. Not sure why we can't seem to prioritize Jay Allen.
2. Basketball, basketball, basketball. Find tall, skinnier hoopsters, turn them into WRs. Find tall, medium-sized hoopsters, turn them into TEs. Find tall, bulky hoopsters, turn them into OLs and DLs. There's only 5 starters on a basketball team, and 22 starters on a football team. Show these kids the pathway forward.
JHH
 
Two what ifs:

1. How would the football landscape would look today if Miami had landed Dalvin Cook and FSU got Joe Yearby?
2. If Golden had managed to keep Teddy Bridgewater in the class, is anything different?
 
Two what ifs:

1. How would the football landscape would look today if Miami had landed Dalvin Cook and FSU got Joe Yearby?
2. If Golden had managed to keep Teddy Bridgewater in the class, is anything different?
Bridgewater may have delayed things
 
Agree 100% on WR's, due to the evolution of the game being about tempo & heavy passing, it's essential you load up on big play WR's. That's what's separated LSU last year from everybody, was that they literally had 4-6 NFL caliber wide outs that made them an uncoverable historic offense. Same with Bama & Clemson during their championship runs.

Miami has to get back to being WRU, we have to identify early the track star athletes that will play WR once they hit HS & entrench ourselves in their recruitments, luckily for us we've wised up & finally brought in offense that's conducive to productivity & can be attractive to top flight WR's.

Obviously, our current crop of WR's has struggled for most of the season, but with the loss of spring reps it really affected the ability to build continuity with King. However, I think as the season progresses you'll see better WR play down the stretch.

As for the recruiting aspect, I like Keyshawn Smith & Michael Redding from the 2020 crop to fit the mold of big time down field playmakes, I think Restrepo with more physical development can be a good college Slot, Worsham was a bad eval by Stubblefck IMO, but the 21 group looks to be an explosive bunch, while they don't have the huge prototype 6'3 & up size you'd like to see, they make up for with great speed, lateral footwork & natural playmaking ability, as route runners they are all fairly polished as well when you look at Brinson, George, Smith & Curtis.

You're also spot on with QB, people get enamored with the high ranked QB's who look great with a pristine pocket, but the trend in both college & the pro's has been kids who weren't necessarily that high ranked coming out HS & were multi-sport athletes who had athletic upside & exponential growth in college.

Zach Wilson (who is the highest graded QB in the nation & arguably one of the top 2) was a mid-tier 3-star in HS, but he was also a dual sport athlete that played Basketball & was a 2-Guard that averaged just under 11 points a game. He wasn't a glass case statuesque QB specialist, he was a lanky athletic kid with Basketball feet, raw traits & plenty of room to grow.

IMO that's what we need to be looking for in every class for our HS QB recruiting, obviously, if a dynamic baller like King hits the portal you take'em every time, but always be looking for an athletic QB with upside & not get too complacent just chasing after the High ranked one dimensional type QB's.
 
Really appreciate the write up. It's clear from this post that recruiting and evals are hard, and even if you nail the evals you can't get the top guys unless you're already winning, which is why this season is so encouraging.

The transfer portal is a huge hack for us - our 5ish best players (King, Roche, Phillips, Bolden, Williams) are all from the portal. Does this also speak to years of poor recruiting? Sure, but its obviously a lot easier to just pick out kids that have already balled in D1 than go through the exercise above. You still have to recruit traditionally for most of the roster spots but being Portal U gives us a lot more cushion to not recruit perfectly for some of the tougher SFL positions, and should prove to be a big advantage going forward.
 
1. Not sure why we can't seem to prioritize Jay Allen.
2. Basketball, basketball, basketball. Find tall, skinnier hoopsters, turn them into WRs. Find tall, medium-sized hoopsters, turn them into TEs. Find tall, bulky hoopsters, turn them into OLs and DLs. There's only 5 starters on a basketball team, and 22 starters on a football team. Show these kids the pathway forward.

Not every basketball player despite his athleticism and body type is gonna turn into a good football player.
There's a toughness needed to play the sport.
 
24/7 had a great article talking about teh arms race of stockpiling explosive wr and how teams like Bama, LSU, Clemson, Osu and okla are basically trying to hoard as many top guys as possible. Bama changed their formula of just feeding a julio and Amari to having multiple 1st round talents on field at same time and them having game breaking speed to stretch the field even more. LSU had 5 star talent as their 3rd wr there was no way you had enough DB to cover them one on one..
 

2021 Commits

S
6'5"
220
Fort Lauderdale, FL
DT
6'4"
255
Miami, FL
OG
6'2"
295
Miami, FL
WR
5'9"
190
Miami, FL
DE
6'5"
210
Miami, FL
WR
6'2"
180
Miami, FL
RB
6'0"
225
Hollywood, FL
TE
6'4"
210
Frisco, TX
STR
6'3"
190
Melbourne Senior, FL
S
5'11"
200
Miami, FL

Latest Predictions

by whoopingcane
Certain
by Andrew
High
by whoopingcane
Certain
by under67ty
Medium
by whoopingcane
Certain
09/10 vs
UAB
Win 31 - 14
09/19 @
LOU
Win 47 - 34
09/26 vs
FSU
Win 52 - 10
10/10 @
CLEM
Loss 42 - 17
10/17 vs
PITT
Win 31 - 19
10/24 vs
UVA
Win 19 - 14
11/06 @
NCST
Win 44 - 41
11/14 @
VT
Win 25 - 24
12/05 @
DUKE
12/12 vs
UNC
12/19 vs
GT
Top