Just when many thought it couldn’t get better for the Miami Hurricanes, the Division I council has chosen to extend the recruiting dead period in all sports through August 31.
While at first glance it seems to take a toll on all programs, the Hurricanes’ ability to recruit the South Florida pipeline will generate commits during the dead period.
Since the original dead period began on April 15 — and extended four more times: first on May 31, next to June 30, July 31, and now to August 31 — the Canes have garnered verbal commitments from Lamar Seymore, Allan Haye, Malik Curtis, Ryan Rodriguez, Elijah Arroyo, Deshawn Troutman, Jacolby George, and Romello Brinson.
Ironically, seven of the eight players — aside from Elijah Arroyo — are from the Sunshine State, six being from South Florida.
Because out of state teams won’t be able to bring any of the local players on a visit, the Hurricanes will have a major advantage in pursuing the well-known Florida hotbed until September. And with some hometown stars expected to commit soon, Miami is bound for a top ten 2021 recruiting class.
While the Hurricanes seemed out of the picture, their case for one of the nation’s top recruits continues to improve.
In a recent interview with Rob Cassidy, a Rivals analyst, five-star Miami Palmetto defensive tackle Leonard Taylor pointed out that Florida and Miami are the leaders in his recruitment process. “It’s just them [Florida] and Miami at the top,” Taylor said.
The Palmetto star has been filmed wearing Canes gear in his workouts recently, noting his interest in Manny Diaz’s squad.
The 6-foot-4, 255-pound prospect is the nation’s No. 3 defensive tackle and No. 27 overall recruit in the 2021 class, according to the 247Sports Composite score.
Taylor recorded 11 sacks, 26 tackles for loss, and 68 tackles in 2019, alongside UM commit Savion Collins. He would be the Canes’ first 5-star signee since Lorenzo Lingard in 2018.
At one point in time, Miami’s chances of acquiring James Williams were slim to none, especially when the Hurricanes weren’t listed in the recruit’s ‘Top 3’ back in February.
However, Manny Diaz’s Hurricanes were kept in consideration for the nation’s No. 1 ranked athlete in the country as he cataloged the Canes in his ‘Final 2’ on June 18th.
The Opa Locka, Florida native, listed at 6-foot-5, 220-pounds, utilizes his physical attributes to haunt quarterbacks and receivers all night long. Although the 247Sports’ Composite Rankings lists Williams as an athlete, the best player in Florida thrives at the secondary position, being a threat to any pass that goes up in his sight.
Williams was a former Miami commit but the lack of competent play led to his decommitment from The U. Many analysts have Williams siding towards Georgia. However, the dead recruiting period allows the Hurricanes to persuade Williams to stay home.
Corey Collier Jr.
Similar to that of Leonard, Palmetto defensive back Corey Collier Jr. has seemed more interested in joining the Hurricanes.
The 6-foot-2, 170-pound DB is the son of Cornelius Collier, who played at FSU from 1999 to 2002. As a junior, he was a Miami Herald All-Dade 8A-6A first-team selection. He intercepted four passes, collected 54 tackles (4 TFL) and broke up 13 passes.
Collier is a four-star prospect according to 247 Sports, ranked as the No. 3 safety in the 2021 recruiting class and the No. 83 overall player.
Back in May, the local star listed Clemson, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, LSU, and Miami as his final choices in the lead up to his college decision. Because of the dead recruiting period, it won’t be surprising to see the Hurricanes make a greater effort in grabbing Collier from the market.
Smith is the third Palmetto stud that could quite possibly end up wearing the U on both sides of his helmet.
One of Dade County’s most versatile prospects released his ‘Top 5’ in May, listing Miami (FL), Florida, Auburn, Oregon, and Tennessee.
The 2019 Miami Herald All-Dade 8A-6A first-team selection recorded 36 receptions for 628 yards (17.4 yards per catch) and 13 touchdowns as a junior for the Panthers.
Although Smith — 5-foot-8, 190 pounds — is short in stature, he makes up for it with speed and agility as he runs a 4.34 40-time. The three-star can develop into an electric play-maker as a slot receiver under Rhett Lashlee’s spread offense.
Committing on July 11, Kamren Kinchens is a heavy favorite to become a Hurricane.
Kinchens, 5-foot-11, 190-pounds, is one of the top defensive backs and return specialists in the nation. Last season, he notched 74 tackles, 11 interceptions, three tackles for loss, and a punt return touchdown. His electric season was key to Miami Northwestern’s Class 5A State Championship run. He’s ranked as the No. 16 safety (No. 289 overall) in the 2021 recruiting class by 247Sports’ Composite rankings.
In May, the four-star safety announced his ‘Top 5’ schools, listing the Miami Hurricanes, LSU, Texas A&M, Nebraska, and Auburn.
Miami has held a close relationship with the star safety ever since they offered him back in February. He attended the Canes’ Junior Day in late January.
Kinchens told 305Sports that his strong connection with Miami’s safety coach Ephraim Banda was the biggest factor in putting the Canes in his final five. “[My] relationship with UM is great,” he said. “My relationship with coach Banda puts them in my top 5.”
The possibility of reuniting with his Northwestern teammates: Romello Brinson, Tim Burns, Kahlil Brantley, and Ja’Corey Hammett at UM has been hinted throughout the past weeks.
Following the commitment of Brinson in early June — which made it a total of four players from ‘The West’ pledging to play for the Canes — Kinchens’ teammates implied the possibility of having another future Hurricane coming soon.
Kinchens holds two crystal balls leading towards The U, and with Brinson’s commitment, Miami may have sealed the deal for the safety.
Will the Miami Hurricanes complete the five for five sweep at Northwestern and ‘Make The Crib Great Again’?
William Hernandez contributed to this article.