Why Florida Sports are so Dominant

Sawyer Wilson, Staff Writer

Ever since many of the students have been old enough to watch sports, the state of Florida has always dominated in them. Florida sports are dominant in high school, where there are more baseball and football teams ranked in the nation’s top 25 yearly than most, if not all other states, to college, where there is a combined 11 football national championships between the big three schools.
Florida is a sports powerhouse and it begins in high school. For baseball, the state of Florida gets to play year round in a sport that requires great amount training and repetitions to build arm strength. With this advantage the players grow and mature at a much faster rate. Evidence of this can be found in the college baseball programs: FSU has 20 College World Series appearances, UM has four national championships, and UF is quickly becoming one of the best programs in the country with multiple preseason No.1 rankings.
In high school football the areas are so densely populated that in order to play a student has to become a prime athlete in order to earn a spot on the field. In rural areas in the Midwest, or crowded cities in the Northeast, the football isn’t very competitive. But Florida offers the perfect mix of space and density. This is clear at the high school level with schools like Plant, St. Thomas Aquinas, and Armwood, Dr. Phillips, and Miami Northwestern to name a few being consistently ranked in the top 25 in the nation. These students tend to stay local and play in the state. This explains the dominance of the high college programs in the past thirty years with Miami winning six national championship, Florida State with two, and the University of Florida with three. That makes 10 of the past 30 national championships won by the state of Florida. Florida State has 70% Florida residents on their roster, Florida has 78%, and Miami has 63%. Further evidence of the dominance of Florida high school football.

For the same reasons as baseball and football, soccer also leaps forward on the national stage for being one of the best states for soccer in the country, rivaled only by California. The local high school stars who go on to play at the big three schools, with Florida State leading the way being consistently ranked in the top five in national rankings, and the other two following suit close behind.
So while weather plays a crucial role, the beaches and excellent campuses help as well. When it comes to recruiting, many schools aren’t able to offer these prime real estate locations as well as above average academics.
Many factors play a role in sculpting the sports scene in Florida, and pinpointing which ones are the most important would be difficult. But one thing is for certain, that whatever they are, they are working.