If you ever sat down and just went over all the talent that this region of the country has, you would be amazed at how many big time collegiate prospects there are throughout Miami-Dade and Broward Counties.
Take any football program and you will find as many as six or seven who have already been targeted by major programs throughout the country. Look at how many 2014 players current juniors who have already made a commitment.
If you were to sit down and choose the best 24 football players, no matter what class or size of the school, it would be a tough assignment. No matter what player you chose for a particular position, there would always be three or four other prospects who could have a valid claim to being one of those 24 athletes. No other place in the country could make that statement.
I have been fortunate all spring and summer to not only see the many athletes locally, but also have been going on the road, comparing many of the top prospects in this region to others throughout the state of Florida. With that in mind, I have come up with my first Larry Blustein 2012 PreSeason All-Dade/Broward team. Just my opinion with players that I have been fortunate to watch from all classes:
WR Ermon Lane, 6-2, 175, Homestead: Big time football talent who has a chance to be one of the nations best over the next two years. Just a junior, this is a football player who makes things happen.
WR Stacy Coley, 6-2, 190, Northeast: If you follow high school football, this is someone you already know. Rated as the No. 1 senior receiver in the state of Florida, this nationally-rated prospect is a difference maker.
OL Denver Kirkland, 6-3, 290, Booker T. Washington: Playing since his ninth grade year, this is one of the most complete offensive line prospects in the state. Following in the rather large footsteps of his older brother, he has made some major strides as heads into his senior year.
OL Sandley Jean Felix, 6-5, 300, Boyd Anderson: Remains one of the most physical and athletic big men in South Florida. A huge year ahead as more and more colleges will get a good look at this strong senior football prospect. The Cobras will rely on him - in a huge way!
OL Jordan Budwig, 6-4, 320, University School: This three-year varsity performer has raised his game every year, making a solid impression for the Suns. Was singled out for his play during the spring buy several colleges who have been watching this senior.
OL Trevor Darling, 6-5, 300, Central: Heading into his second year as a starter, this talented junior is one of the most athletic line prospects in the state. A University of Miami commit, he has two more seasons to get better!
OL Kyle Schafenacker, 6-4, 285, St. Thomas Aquinas: Not one lineman has made the strides that this quality prospect has made. After a solid junior season, his spring and summer watched him elevate his status nationally as he committed to attend UConn next year.
QB Quinton Flowers, 6-1, 190, Jackson: From the day he walked onto campus, this one-time youth football standout in Liberty City, has been nothing short of amazing. Whether its with his arm, where he threw for over 1,500 yards or on the ground a place in which he ignited the Generals during the playoff run, this junior can do it all.
RB Sony Michel, 5-11, 195, American Heritage: Before sustaining a season-ending injury last year as a sophomore, this nationally-rated running back had over 3,400 yards as an eighth and ninth grader. He is bigger, stronger , still blazing quick and the No. 1 prospect in the Class of 2014.
RB Joe Yearby, 5-9, 185, Central: From the time he began his high school career, there was no doubt that this was going to be something special. Another of those Class of 2014 phenoms, this one-time youth football standout has become one of the best in the country. Quick, strong and elusive can change the outcome of a game like that!
PK Emilio Nadelman, 5-9, 180, Central: This three year varsity performer continues to give the Rockets a huge edge when it comes to special teams. Big time leg, he adds a dimension that many teams just do not have.
UT Alex Collins, 5-11, 195, South Plantation: One of the most versatile backs around, this two-year varsity standout begins his senior season as one of the most complete backs in Florida. He committed to the University of Miami.
DL Khairi Clark, 6-3, 310, Chaminade Madonna: Coming up on his third year as a varsity starter, this may be one of the most dominating junior defensive lineman in the nation. Is easily one of the strongest football players who happens to throw his frame around the field at a 4.8 (40) pace!
DL Joey Bosa, 6-5, 270, St. Thomas Aquinas: As he begins his final season, here is one of those quick, athletic and instinctive prospects in the country. Has a chance to be very special as he heads to Ohio State in 2013.
DL Paul James, 6-4, 235, Norland: After two solid seasons at Dr. Krop, this impressive senior comes back to where he started as a ninth grader and with size, speed and the ability to make plays, everyone continues to watch and be amazed.
LB Michael Deeb, 6-2, 240, American Heritage: Another of those quality football players who is coming off a solid junior year, and very impressive off season. Headed to Notre Dame, this is one of the hardest working players in the state.
LB Matthew Thomas, 6-4, 210, Booker T. Washington: They have said that if you put this superb athlete at safety, he will be one of the best in the country. They said that if you put his hand down and rush the passer, he will break all kinds of records. South Floridas best senior prospect can simply do it all.
LB Jermaine Grace, 6-2, 195, Miramar: In a region loaded with athletes, this is one who has more than stepped up and made an impression, So solid was his junior year and off season that every college in the country has been watching and keeping an eye out.
LB Skai Moore, 6-2, 205, University School: Of all the tremendous prospects at this position in South Florida, here is the one that college coaches believe will make the first impact at the next level. A quick, strong tackling machine, here is a player everyone is starting to hear about.
DB Jaquan Johnson, 5-11, 170, Killian: As a freshman last season, there was simply none better anywhere in this nation. Talk about the greats in California, Texas and Ohio all you want, but nobody did more to help his team win than this gifted talent that plays on both sides of the ball, and special teams as well and was an all-state peformer.
DB Jamal Carter, 6-1, 185, Southridge: This recent University of Miami commit has been on the radar screen for three seasons now, and as he begins his final year, this is going to be one of the most anticipated by his teammates and the coaching staff. Unlimited potential.
DB Quincy Wilson, 6-2, 190, University School: If there is a better pure safety prospect anywhere, we would like to see him. The son of former University of Miami defensive back, Chad Wilson, here is another junior who had an amazing off season.
DB Michael Johnson, 5-10, 175, Booker T. Washington: When asked what he did this summer, its a good bet that this quality prospect may not have enough paper to write down everything. Besides a solid spring and a 7-on-7 season that saw his team win a national championship and post a 56-2 record, this senior committed to attend FSU.
UT Artie Burns, 6-1 180, Northwestern: When they talk about the fastest football players in the state of Florida for the Class of 2012, this has to be one of the athletes in the mix. A blazing track standout, this recent University of Miami commit is looking for a huge year on the field for the Bulls.
We are always looking to help promote our area recruits for the current classes of 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016. All you have to do is send a DVD and information about the athlete to: Larry Blustein, P.O. Box 3181, Hallandale Beach, FL 33009.
Have a comment? E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Larry on Twitter at twitter.com/larryblustein.