Ever since I can remember the Miami Hurricanes have made a name for themselves in college football by recruiting heavily within their home base area. Growing up in South Florida I can attest to the fact that I, and everyone who I played football with, dreamed of going on to play for the University of Miami. This wasn't because the program had the best facilities or because it necessarily had the best stadium, but the program had come to represent South Florida and playing there just seemed like the logical next step for those who had the talent to play college football, which I didn't. Still, the dream was always there and as a fan of the Canes I am hoping the efforts to recruit local talent remains strong so the Hurricanes can find their way back to the top.
Beginnings of the State of Miami Philosophy
This was a philosophy that was started by legendary Canes head coach Howard Schnellenberger as he successfully took the University of Miami to their first National Championship in 1983 by making use of the local talent pool in what he called the "State of Miami." Over the years this has been a philosophy that hasn't seemed to be lost on any Hurricanes head coach including current head coach Al Golden. But, the game has changed quite a bit and so too has recruiting.
While the Miami Hurricanes have no lack of history they have run into problems as of late. Along with several lackluster seasons the team has now combined those problems with possible NCAA sanctions to come. When adding in the fact that the Florida Gators and the Florida State Seminoles have also built programs capable of winning National Titles it all equals a harder recruiting task for the Miami Hurricanes coaching staff. But, the philosophy can't be lost.
Success Breeds Success
If there is one sure way to start landing all the South Florida recruits, and even those outside the area, once again it will be to have success. However, a lot of that success will be determined by the players the Hurricanes recruit and while the competition is fierce I still think they hold the advantage in the southern most part of the state.
Hopefully, Al Golden and his staff will continue to recruit at the level they have thus far, but hopefully they will also continue to stay true to the State of Miami philosophy. For the long-term success of the Miami Hurricanes and all of South Florida, who better to help the team get that success back than the players who all grew up dreaming of going to The U?
Jimmy Collins has been a loyal fan of "The U" since he was a child attending games at the original Orange Bowl. Still a resident of South Florida, he attends numerous Miami Hurricanes games each season and enjoys writing about NCAA Football and the Miami Hurricanes in particular.
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- the University of Miami