3 FOR THURSDAY: Mayo, Reddick & Walters Setting The Tempo

Larry Blustein
August 09, 2018 - 11:20 am

This time next week, we will have already started the 2018 high school football season.

 

With kickoff classics that may not count in the win and loss column, actually mean a lot – and if many of these teams are going to realize their dreams – it will have to start this coming week.

 

Football in south Florida – and around the country – has changed so much over the past 40 years.

 

Football actually changed in south Florida in the 70’s. As schools began to pop up in the suburbs, the talent pool, even for Miami-Dade and Broward, began to thin out. 

 

While the private schools began to get the elite kids, public programs had to scramble and find the right combination.

 

But before you look toward the future, checking out an storied past is what this has been all about – especially for Miami-Dade schools, which dominated for decades. What happened between 1930’s and 1970 was just an impressive appetizer to a meal that would ride into the national spotlight for decades and decades to come.

 

Purple Heart winners, politicians and those who heard that Miami was a swell place to live before, during and after the wars, settled in and the story began.

 

Miami had become a true melting pot of servicemen and their families, settling in for 12 months of summer and the ocean – five miles away. It had become a place where everyone wanted to be.

 

As they flocked in from Ohio, New York and New Jersey, Maryland and Pennsylvania, they brought with them years of watching professional football – and knew how the game was played and could coach, too.

 

Miami had become a mecca for football players. Something that has carried on for over 90 years. And, while we said it many, many times, this sport that we have today – with powers up and down I-95 –would never have been possible for what Miami High, for three decades and numerous national crown, and Coral Gables, which had been the first national champion in the modern era.

 

FOOTBALL IS STILL FOOTBALL

Today, things change in an instant at schools everywhere. The loyalty, in some cases – and for good reason – is swayed by winning and a better chance of exposure.

 

I have been fortunate – in the past 47 plus years to have watched things change around me – and while there are many, many schools, the football that kindled this “mecca” of talent is still very much alive

 

THREE TO WATCH
As we do every week, three new prospects are introduced.

 

2019 – Marlin Mayo, WR. Coconut Creek. One of the fresh, new faces that the Cougars picked up in the offseason – coming in from defending 3A state champion Chaminade-Madonna. Quality football player who just needs the opportunity to sowcase his skills.

 

What Marlin brings to the table this coming season is someone who can run – and create big plays. He adds balance to the passing game – which should also help to open up the offense and a quality running game.

 

TAPE: https://www.hudl.com/profile/5482303/MARLIN-MAYO 

 

2019 – Gregory Reddick, DB, Miami Carol City. If you remember his sophomore year at Booker T. Washington, there is no doubt that this was one of those impressive athletes who was on a fast-track to the next level. 

 

After a year in the northeast, he returns, changes schools and is still among the football players who will impact area play this season. Big time athlete who will hit like a linebacker, but is agile enough to defend the pass.

 

TAPE: https://www.hudl.com/profile/6174200/Gregory-Reddick

 

2020 – Kyle Walters, RB, Plantation. While we have put him out before – it is worth noting that the Colonels stand to have one of the deepest backfields you will find this season. Bellamy is still the center of attention – and will continue to pick up plenty of interest.

 

As he missed the spring game against Coconut Creek, everyone in the district and across south Florida know all about this impressive back who combines power and speed. Remember, he won’t have to do it all – as this team now has three other backs to lighten the work load. 

 

TAPE: https://www.hudl.com/profile/6132114/KYLE-WALTERS

 

Catch the South Florida High School Sports Radio Show each Saturday morning (10-11) on WQAM (560AM - https://wqam.radio.com/media/podcast/south-florida-high-school-sports-radio). For the past 11 years, the players and coazches who are making the headlines, join the program. You will learn a lot about football recruiting!