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State's Big 3 never will be toppled in recruiting, analyst says

At least one national recruiting analyst believes Charlie Strong and USF never will be on the same recruiting plane with Florida, FSU and Miami.

Times file photo

At least one national recruiting analyst believes Charlie Strong and USF never will be on the same recruiting plane with Florida, FSU and Miami.

30

January

At least one national analyst doesn't believe the state's recent run of splash coaching hires will alter Florida's balance of recruiting power.

The Big Three -- FSU, Florida, Miami -- will remain entrenched at the top, Rivals.com national recruiting director Mike Farrell said Friday. Which isn't to suggest Butch Davis (FIU), Lane Kiffin (FAU) and Charlie Strong (USF) won't snag a four-star Floridian now and again. They will, Farrell said.

Just not enough to topple the state's oldest and most established programs.

"Florida State is still the king right now," Farrell addded. "Miami's No. 2 when it comes to recruiting, Florida's No. 3, and then you have a massive dropoff to the USF, UCF range, and then another massive dropoff to th FIUs and FAUs of the world. That's just life. It's never gonna change."

Less than 48 hours before national signing day dawns, UCF (No. 65) and FIU (No. 83) are the state's only non-Big Three schools with top-100 recruiting classes, according to Rivals.com. But Farrell doesn't expect a quantum rankings leap in 2018, when Strong, Kiffin and Davis have had the benefit of a full recruiting cycle.

"Now does that mean Charlie can't get good south Florida players? It doesn't mean that, because there's so many of them that he's gonna be able to pull a four-star kid here and there," Farrell said. "Maybe an athlete that other schools want to move around, but wants to play quarterback."

[Last modified: Monday, January 30, 2017 10:15am]

    

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