Head Coach: Joe Mira
2002 Final Record: 7-4
Current Wolfpack Target(s): LB/DE Javier Estopinan
Cobra Overview: The South Miami (HS) Cobras, who in Coach Joe Mira's first season went 7-4, are one of the toughest teams around and are led by Linebacker Javier Estopinan on defense.
"How we finish is something I don't worry too much about this early," Coach Mira told StateFans. "This was my first year here and they hadn't won the district championship in 13 years or beat Coral Gables in 8 years, but we did it last season. I always say that my team will play hard for 48 minutes and give it all they have. As far as how I think we'll do this season… I don't get caught up in wins or losses."
Mira, who in his nearly 25 years of coaching has put over 130 kids in Division-1 programs, has had his fair share of talent. Some notable players that have played under Mira are ex-Colorado State star Cecil Sapp and ex-University of Miami Linebacker Rohan Marley (yes, the son of Bob Marley).
South Miami, which is the smallest public school in the area, plays all their home games at the local Municipal Stadium. Tampa Stadium seats roughly 12,000 fans a game and the South Miami staff expects nearly full capacity for some games.
"There will probably be around 8,000 fans for the Coral Gables game this year. It's a big-time game in the area and the schools are main rivals."
As far as college prospects, the Cobras are low on high-major D-1 kids this season, but are littered with solid D-2 kids.
"Outside of 'Javy' we don't have that many big-time kids because a lot of times schools get caught up in the size of a prospect. But we do have several kids who are going to make some D-2 colleges very happy because they are tough and will give them everything they have."
The May evaluation period brought dozens of coaches through South Miami to check out star linebacker Javier Estopinan.
"We've had around fifty colleges coaches come through here to check him out. Of those fifty, one-fifth have sent him written offers at home. Florida, Florida State, N.C. State, and Ohio State are some of the schools that have offered him."
Coach Mira has known NC State Head Coach Chuck Amato for nearly 30 years and considered the ex-FSU assistant a great coach, but more importantly, a friend.
"Chuck and Doc are some of the best recruiters down here and everyone knows that. I've known Chuck for a long time and he always comes across as 'soft,' as opposed to a hard-sell like some others coaches do. He doesn't try to pressure a kid into going to his school and he lets the kids decide for themselves."
"They know how sincere he is in regards to their players and he lays it on the line when dealing with recruiting. I don't think there's a coach in the county who has one bad thing to say about Chuck. He has that much respect."
South Miami High School
Head Coach Richard Mira
Mr. Estopinan and Assistant Coach Cespedes