2. Miami has a substantial lead in recruiting.
All three schools have a lot of work to do to keep the top talent in the state. There was a time that each school had the right of first refusal in the state. As they lost their foothold in the state, Alabama, Georgia, and Clemson (among other schools) began taking the best talent in the state. Two of the top ten players in the state during this last cycle are going to school in Florida (Miami and Florida State).
2022 was even worse. Just one of Florida’s top ten players went to school in the state. Five of the top ten players in the state are committed to the 2024 class; none are committed to a Florida school. Two players have crystal balls; Miami has one of them.
That said, the Hurricanes have out-recruited the Gators and Seminoles since Cristobal has been in Coral Gables. The Hurricanes had the 16th-rated class in 2022 and the 7th-rated class in 2023. Florida’s classes were 18th and 16th, respectively; Florida State’s classes were 20th and 19th.
Florida football and Miami lost out on Cormani McClain, and Florida lost Rashada. Florida State lost out on Travis Hunter in 2022.
The Seminoles have found a cheat code in the transfer portal. First, with Georgia transfer Jermaine Johnson, then with Jared Verse and Johnny Wilson. Is that model sustainable? Schools that contend for National Titles use the portal to plug holes, not build rosters. If there is one criticism of Norvell’s tenure, it is the lack of juice in recruiting.
Florida has been solid but has to up the ante in recruiting to catch Georgia, who is out-recruiting all three schools in Florida right now.