The football players that region produces have the attributes he craves.
"The kids down there are different," he said. "They're special. I've seen it year after year after year."
"I love those kids down there," he added. "They're tough, they like ball and they like to compete. That's what it's all about."
"They like ball" is a tried and true Doc-ism, a favorite line of his when he describes what he looks for in a player. In South Florida, though, a high schooler has to love the sport if he wants to succeed. In that area, they don't celebrate one major Division I signing a year. They celebrate four, five or more at each school.
Everyone's fast. Everyone's strong. It's work ethic and drive that sets the better players apart, and Shuler said that starts in the backyard.
"Growing up, just playing street ball, knowing you wanted to win every play and win every down, you wanted to do anything in the street, just knowing you needed to get that last touchdown. Competition is big. We're competitive in everything."
It's not just because those athletes like the cameras and the newspaper clippings and the invitations to the national all-star games. They see college football as a means to an end. In a perfect world, it's their portal to an NFL career. Besides that, it's also the path to a college degree, a nice job and the house with the picket fence and the dog.
"The plan is to get out of the neighborhood," Cato said, "to reach your goals and set your standards high. Not be a follower. Be a leader. Be your own man and be self-motivated. Football and school are a ticket for me, to get a degree and hopefully be a successful man in life."
It's a flooded college football market in South Florida anymore. Programs spring up overnight like strip malls, all elbowing each other out of the way for the same talent. That's no problem for Holliday. He's a stalwart in that region, still winning recruiting battles and hugs from moms and grandmas.
It's the sign of a great closer.
Contact sportswriter Derek Redd at derek.r...@dailymail.com or 304-348-1712. His blog is at blogs.dailymail.com/marshall. Follow him on Twitter @derekredd.