Miami Holds Major Experience Edge Over FSU

Over the summer I profiled Miami's program and concluded that the Canes are really falling off in recruiting after dominating FSU on the recruiting trail in 2007 and 2008, and that they have a two-year window to really make some noise nationally thanks to some excellent recruiting two and three years ago.  If you haven't read those two pieces yet, please do.  One | Two.  Miami's talent is found in its juniors and seniors, while FSU's talent (with a few exceptions) is found in its young guys.    Miami's players are physically mature and experienced and are not getting acclimated to new schemes.  FSU's are not.  Let's take a look.

Below is the roster of guys who actually play in the games for both teams.  Things like backup offensive linemen aren't included because teams typically do not rotate offensive linemen.  But teams do use multiple receivers, multiple backs, and multiple defensive players.  Players who are not healthy and will miss the game are not included in the lineups.  Here they are:

Offense
Miami FSU
WR 3 Travis Benjamin (5-11, 176, Jr.) X 83 Bert Reed 5-10 175 Jr.
or 47 LaRon Byrd (6-4, 215, Jr.) 82 Willie Haulstead 6-3 213 So
LT 74 Orlando Franklin (6-7, 312, Sr.) LT Andrew Datko 6-6 307 Jr.
LG 66 Harland Gunn (6-2, 315, Jr.) LG 62 Rodney Hudson 6-2 288 Sr.
C 63 Tyler Horn (6-4, 295, Jr.) C 60 Ryan McMahon 6-1 285 Sr.
RG 72 Brandon Washington (6-4, 330, Soph.) RG 79 David Spurlock 6-4 300 Jr.
RT 77 Seantrel Henderson (6-8, 355, Fr.) RT 77 Zebrie Sanders 6-6 307 Jr.
TE 84 Richard Gordon (6-4, 265, Sr.) TE 88 Beau Reliford 6-6 254 Jr.
9 Chase Ford (6-6, 245, Jr.) 85 Ja’Baris Little 6-3 237 Jr.
WR 85 Leonard Hankerson (6-3, 205, Sr.) Z 8 Taiwan Easterling 5-11 200 Jr.
or 4 Aldarius Johnson (6-3, 200, Jr.) 84 Rodney Smith 6-6 222 So.
QB 12 Jacory Harris (6-4, 200, Jr.) QB 7 Christian Ponder 6-3 222 Sr.
HB 20 Damien Berry (6-0, 215, Sr.) TB 38 Jermaine Thomas 5-11 192 Jr.
5 Mike James (6-0, 217, Soph.) 23 Chris Thompson 5-8 185 So.
FB 30 Patrick Hill (5-9, 255, Sr.) FB 24 Lonnie Pryor 6-0 213 So.

Seniors
5- Miami
3- FSU

Juniors
7- Miami
8- FSU

Sophomores
2- Miami
4- FSU

Freshmen
1- Miami
0- FSU

Both offenses are both fairly veteran, with Miami being slightly more experienced.

Where the Canes really have the edge, however, is on the defensive side.  This makes sense given FSU's awful defensive staff over the last few years.  

Defense
Miami FSU
LE 57 Allen Bailey (6-4, 285, Sr.) LE 98 Markus White 6-4 265 Sr.
56 Marcus Robinson (6-1, 240, Jr.) 95 Bjoern Werner 6-4 273 Fr.
LT 92 Josh Holmes (6-0, 280, Sr.) DT 93 Everett Dawkins 6-2 285 So.
93 Luther Robinson (6-3, 295, R-Fr.) 97 Demonte McAllister 6-2 280 Fr.
RT 54 Micanor Regis (6-3, 305, Jr.) NG 99 Jacobbi McDaniel 6-0 298 So.
99 Marcus Forston (6-3, 305, R-Soph.) 92 Anthony McCloud 6-2 302 So
RE 35 Olivier Vernon (6-4, 250, Soph.) RE 49 Brandon Jenkins 6-3 250 So.
or 97 Adewale Ojomo (6-4, 260, Jr.) 58 Dan Hicks 6-4 260 Fr.
SLB 45 Ramon Buchanan (6-1, 220, Jr.) SLB 16 Mister Alexander 6-3 237 Sr.
or 36 Kylan Robinson (6-1, 235, Sr.) 7 Christian Jones 6-4 228 Fr.
MLB 44 Colin McCarthy (6-2, 240, Sr.) MLB 29 Kendall Smith 6-0 242 Sr.
WLB 31 Sean Spence (6-0, 220, Jr.) WLB 13 Nigel Bradham 6-2 240 Jr.
LCB 13 Ryan Hill (6-0, 205, Sr.) BC 27 Xavier Rhodes 6-1 210 Fr.
Nickel 8 DeMarcus Van Dyke (6-1, 185, Sr.) NCB 1 Michael Harris 5-11 183 Jr.
RCB 1 Brandon Harris (5-11, 195, Jr.) FC 5 Greg Reid 5-8 185 So.
SS 29 JoJo Nicolas (6-1, 205, R-Jr.) FS 10 Nick Moody 6-2 228 So.
26 Ray Armstrong (6-4, 215, Soph.)  
FS 7 Vaughn Telemaque (6-2, 207, Soph.) SS 4 Terrance Parks 6-2 218 Jr.

Note that Miami rotates its strong safety while FSU does not (unless the game is out of hand).  

Seniors
6- Miami
3- FSU

Juniors
7- Miami
3- FSU

Sophomores
4- Miami
6- FSU

Freshmen
1- Miami
5- FSU

That's 13 upperclassmen contributing on defense for the Canes, and only 6 for the 'Noles.  As I profiled throughout the entire off-season, this is a young defense for the 'Noles and a very good veteran defense for the Canes.

Putting it all together, you can start to see the gaps.  

Two-Deep By Year
Seniors
TE 84 Richard Gordon (6-4, 265, Sr.) C 60 Ryan McMahon 6-1 285 Sr.
LT 92 Josh Holmes (6-0, 280, Sr.) QB 7 Christian Ponder 6-3 222 Sr.
or 36 Kylan Robinson (6-1, 235, Sr.) SLB 16 Mister Alexander 6-3 237 Sr.
MLB 44 Colin McCarthy (6-2, 240, Sr.) LG 62 Rodney Hudson 6-2 288 Sr.
LCB 13 Ryan Hill (6-0, 205, Sr.) MLB 29 Kendall Smith 6-0 242 Sr.
LT 74 Orlando Franklin (6-7, 312, Sr.) LE 98 Markus White 6-4 265 Sr.
WR 85 Leonard Hankerson (6-3, 205, Sr.)  
HB 20 Damien Berry (6-0, 215, Sr.)  
FB 30 Patrick Hill (5-9, 255, Sr.)  
LE 57 Allen Bailey (6-4, 285, Sr.)  
Nickel 8 DeMarcus Van Dyke (6-1, 185, Sr.)  
Juniors
LG 66 Harland Gunn (6-2, 315, Jr.) X 83 Bert Reed 5-10 175 Jr.
C 63 Tyler Horn (6-4, 295, Jr.) Z 8 Taiwan Easterling 5-11 200 Jr.
or 97 Adewale Ojomo (6-4, 260, Jr.) 85 Ja’Baris Little 6-3 237 Jr.
SS 29 JoJo Nicolas (6-1, 205, R-Jr.) LT Andrew Datko 6-6 307 Jr.
WR 3 Travis Benjamin (5-11, 176, Jr.) RG 79 David Spurlock 6-4 300 Jr.
or 47 LaRon Byrd (6-4, 215, Jr.) RT 77 Zebrie Sanders 6-6 307 Jr.
or 4 Aldarius Johnson (6-3, 200, Jr.) SS 4 Terrance Parks 6-2 218 Jr.
QB 12 Jacory Harris (6-4, 200, Jr.) TB 38 Jermaine Thomas 5-11 192 Jr.
56 Marcus Robinson (6-1, 240, Jr.) TE 88 Beau Reliford 6-6 254 Jr.
RT 54 Micanor Regis (6-3, 305, Jr.) WLB 13 Nigel Bradham 6-2 240 Jr.
SLB 45 Ramon Buchanan (6-1, 220, Jr.) NCB 1 Michael Harris 5-11 183 Jr.
WLB 31 Sean Spence (6-0, 220, Jr.)  
RCB 1 Brandon Harris (5-11, 195, Jr.)  
9 Chase Ford (6-6, 245, Jr.)  
Sophomores
99 Marcus Forston (6-3, 305, R-Soph.) DT 93 Everett Dawkins 6-2 285 So.
RG 72 Brandon Washington (6-4, 330, Soph.) FS 10 Nick Moody 6-2 228 So.
5 Mike James (6-0, 217, Soph.) 23 Chris Thompson 5-8 185 So.
RE 35 Olivier Vernon (6-4, 250, Soph.) 82 Willie Haulstead 6-3 213 So
26 Ray Armstrong (6-4, 215, Soph.) 84 Rodney Smith 6-6 222 So.
FS 7 Vaughn Telemaque (6-2, 207, Soph.) FB 24 Lonnie Pryor 6-0 213 So.
  FC 5 Greg Reid 5-8 185 So.
  NG 99 Jacobbi McDaniel 6-0 298 So.
  RE 49 Brandon Jenkins 6-3 250 So.
  92 Anthony McCloud 6-2 302 So
Freshmen
RT 77 Seantrel Henderson (6-8, 355, Fr.) 58 Dan Hicks 6-4 260 R-Fr.
93 Luther Robinson (6-3, 295, R-Fr.) 97 Demonte McAllister 6-2 280 R-Fr.
  BC 27 Xavier Rhodes 6-1 210 R-Fr.
  7 Christian Jones 6-4 228 Fr.
  95 Bjoern Werner 6-4 273 Fr.

Lots of gaps there.

Here it is graphically.  Miami's average player on its two-deep is above a junior, while FSU's is about a half-year behind.

Fsu_miami_age_medium

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