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Miami Hurricanes 2019 Recruiting Notebook: S Keontra Smith

Miami adds an All-American Safety to a rebuilding secondary.

4-star S Keontra Smith will continue Miami’s strong history of players in the secondary.

In this installment of the Recruit Notebook, we meet a tough and physical Safety who is as comfortable making a play on the ball as he is laying the wood to a receiver over the middle: S Keontra Smith.


Keontra Smith is one of the cornerstones of Miami’s 2019 recruiting class. A tough and physical 5’11” 195lbs Safety, Smith has been a standout performer on one of the premier HSFB teams in SoFLA for the last several years.

Smith shows good athleticism and elite skill in both game and 7v7 situations. Smith tested very well in the spring, and was in attendance at Nike’s The Opening, a premier recruit showcase. While there, Smith held his own against some of the top offensive skill talent in the 2019 and 2020 recruiting classes.

For his HS, Hollywood (FL) Chaminade-Madonna, Smith was a cornerstone of a very good defense. He could routinely be seen at every level of the field, making plays and impacting the game. Smith has good instincts, and those usually lead him to the ball, wherever it may be.

In his recruitment, Smith began things by committing to Kentucky in June of 2017. The Wildcats have often pushed for early commitment from some players before their rankings and profile rise, and such was the case with Smith. When Miami began to push for the local standout, however, it was only a matter of time until he flipped to the Canes. Miami offered Smith in February 2018, he decommitted from Kentucky and flipped to Miami in May, and has been locked in with The U ever since.

Recruiting Ranking

On the 247sports composite, Smith is a 4-star prospect, the #15 S nationally in this class, #26 in the State of Florida, and #185 recruit overall.

Smith committed to Miami over offers from Alabama, Auburn, Florida, Kentucky, Michigan, Oklahoma, Oregon, Penn State and many others.

As a Player

Smith is a well-rounded player who makes plays in run support and in the passing game. He lacks ideal height, but has more than enough size for the Safety position. He’s not the same player, but Smith is built very similarly to Canes S Jaquan Johnson, so that should give you an idea of his stature, if nothing else.

Smith played down in the box often at the HS level, often blitzing in run support. He may do that from time to time in College, but likely less than he did in HS. And, since he didn’t have to do it too often, Smith’s coverage skills could use refinement as well.


  • Physical Play
  • Tackling
  • Instincts


  • Average size at best
  • Top end speed
  • Coverage in space

2019 Outlook

Miami needs a bevvy of DBs to replenish that group on the team. With seniors Jaquan Johnson and Sheldrick Redwine graduating this year, there will be plenty of snaps to be had on defense and on special teams.

Chances for a redshirt: 2/10

Much like Al Blades Jr. in 2018, Smith should carve out a big role for himself on special teams, and could work his way into more PT throughout the season

That’s it for this installment of The Recruit Notebook.

Go Canes