In my opinion

Gifted coaches are producing outstanding talent


One of the most overlooked parts of the recruiting process has to be the high school coaches.

When you think about it, signing up to be a football coach in South Florida these days really means you are ready to do everything possible to keep up with your competition.

Miss a summer or offseason event and you fall behind. Hold your players back from competing in year-round events, and you may lose them.

Being a football coach in this region of the country dictates that you wear many hats and do not get the compensation that other parts of the nation does.

Somehow it never made sense that Miami-Dade and Broward counties turn out triple the amount that areas of Texas and Georgia do — and those coaches reap the rewards that come along with strong fan and alumni support.

What our coaches have done for as long as I can remember is have the chance to groom and fine-tune some of the greatest high school football talent in the country.

We have some of the best coaches you will find anywhere. It shows in the way they teach and discipline. It shows in the way the successful ones make it to the next level — and beyond.

As we are now heading toward the middle of spring, this is the time when many should value the high school coaching we have down here.

I, for one, have been fortunate to have watched icons such as Nick Kotys, Lambert Reed, Walt Frazier, George Smith and others work their magic. I also have watched generation after generation of top-flight athletes get that coaching to get them ready for that next step.

Look up and down NFL rosters and you will see the handy work of a Mark Guandolo (Cypress Bay), Ice Harris (Booker T. Washington) and Roland Smith (Central and formerly of Northwestern).

This is indeed a place where stellar coaches such as Damon Cogdell (Miramar), Rocco Casullo (St. Thomas Aquinas), Darryle Heidelberg (Norland), Mike Sonneborn (Dade Christian) and Roger Harriott (University School) continue that path upward.

South Florida is also home to many coaches who work around the clock to place their athletes with colleges and this time of year is certainly a time to sell.

Veterans such as Mark Berman (Hialeah), Jeff Bertani (NMB), Doug Gatewood (South Plantation), Bill Hobbs (Nova) and Greg Magner (Curley) are always waiting to get their prospects into college.

With more college coaches pouring into Miami-Dade and Broward this time of year, this is indeed when high school coaches have the opportunity to showcase their prospects.

“I have been around this game for a long time, and I can tell you that no other part of the country can offer colleges what we do,” Berman said. “Just in the two-county area alone, we have over 100 [Division I] level players.”

Football camp

For a student-athlete, it’s all about training harder, playing better and getting noticed. World of Sports and Speed Trainer (formerly Cris Carter Speed Program) have partnered to present the first annual premier training football event — the Technique Football Camp. This two-day event will be held June 1-2 from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. (9 a.m. check-in) at Mullins Park in Coral Springs, 10000 NW 29th St., 33065.

The World of Sports Technique Football Camp is open to entering high school football players graduating in 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018 (recently graduated seniors are not eligible).

The fee for participants includes an Evapor Performance T-shirt and shorts, insurance and a recovery shake.

For more details, visit or contact: Joshauwa Brown, Camp Director: 954-478-9117

We are always looking to help promote our area recruits for the current classes of 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017. All you have to do is send a YouTube or Hudl link and information about the athlete to: Larry Blustein at Follow Larry on Twitter at

Read more Larry Blustein stories from the Miami Herald

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