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 9 years ago '04        #4801
Cap Peeler 7 heat pts
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ACORY HARRIS Q&A

Q: How do you think the first team offense did today?

Harris: The one offense did well overall. We came out the first drive and went down and scored. We kind of sputtered a little bit – the invisible man was sacking me (referees whistled plays dead when a defender touched the quarterback since they aren't tackled in the spring). I just back up and the whistle blows and I'm like `What's going on?' But they were just trying to protect me. I can't blame them for that. But at the same time I wanted to go out there and make some plays happen. We weren't given an opportunity to do that sometimes, but it was alright.

Q: How is the shoulder you hurt last year?

Harris: My shoulder only hurts when I go to sleep, when I sleep on it. It feels like it's going to be like this for a while, so I'm used to it.

Q: Were you pleased with the execution of the offense?

Harris: Yes. We didn't have a lot of mental errors. We executed our offense well, went through our script, didn't have that many mistakes if any.

Q: Mike James had some nice runs.

Harris: Mike is somebody that is a hard worker and is somebody that I think will get a lot of playing time this year because of his work ethic and how he just runs the ball. He's a downhill runner, tries to bulldoze you. He's going to make plays happen. He's got real good hands.

Q: The defense was mixing things up?

Harris: The defense mixed it up. They'd drop back eight defenders one play and the next play they'd be blitzing everybody. I love the defensive coordinator. He just threw in a lot of defenses to mess with our heads, mess us up.

Q: There were a couple of real big hits today.

Harris: Randy (Phillips) did k!ll Tommy Streeter. But Streeter got back up, made the catch. That's all that counts – positive yards.

Q: Where is this offense compared to where it was at this time last year?

Harris: The same time last year, I think this offense is season-ready. Last year we were beginning to be spring-ready, were just getting together for the spring. I think we're at the point we were at two-a-days last year.

Q: Why do you think you're so advanced this year?

Harris: because of the fact that coach (Mark) Whipple threw a lot at us. He'll put in like 40 plays in one day, we'll go over it, go through them and put them in our memory. I guess that's what helped us out. Everybody knows the offense. Nobody's messing up, forgetting anything. The only basic things like alignment are (the things) messing up.
 9 years ago '04        #4802
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CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- Adewale Ojomo admits he wasn't very disciplined last year.

Ojomo, a sophomore defensive end, was suspended twice last season and was late to meetings and class.

"I was late for meetings and being late to class," Ojomo said. "I had a lot of off- the-field undisciplined things that I am not doing this year. Coach Shannon has complimented me this year on doing the right things and setting an example."

On the field, Ojomo showed flashes during his redshirt freshman campaign particularly early in the season. He finished with 22 tackles, five for a loss, and three sacks in 11 games, making three starts.

"Last year didn't go nearly as good as I thought it would go," Ojomo said. "I was there for few games, but I was very inconsistent. I think I need to show a lot of consistency this spring and new season."

So far, Ojomo feels he has improved on and off the field.

"I feel I am much more focused this year than last," he said. "I am not wandering off. I have my moments, but for the most part I am focused throughout practice."

Ojomo also admitted that the competition for playing time was different and didn't feel he had a lot of competition.

"Last year I would say Marcus Robinson was young coming into camp. Andrew Smith was young. They weren't competition at all for me. But coming in this year, they have a lot of experience. When I fell of last year being inconsistent, they stepped in and filled my role. They have a lot of experience and can easily play over me if I don't focus and do the right thing."

This spring, Ojomo is working to be more consistent and earn a consistent role on the team. Currently he is the second-team right defensive end behind Marcus Robinson.

"I am working to being an all-around player," Ojomo said. "I am going to class, going to study hall, doing the things on and off the field to be a good player. Last year I had off-the-field distractions that I created for myself."

It is clear that Ojomo is using last year as motivation for himself heading into a new season and wants to be someone that his teammates look up to.

"I want to be a leader on this team," Ojomo said. "I want to set an example and I don't want to go through what I went through last year."

He says he is doing well with avoiding off-the-field distractions.

"I am controlling it better. If you don't, you will be here five or six years. You'll be here a long time if you don't get it right in the classroom and you won't have a degree or NFL contract."

Shannon and the rest of the coaching staff have been on Ojomo about doing the right thing, staying in line, and taking care of his responsibilities with school.

"They come to you every to you every time you make a mistake and correct the issue at hand," Ojomo said. "So you pretty much know that you have a certain amount of times that you can mess up. After a while they will pass you by and give the next guy a chance. It's a motivation factor because once you lose your spot, that's it."

Ojomo, who stands 6-foot-3, is up to 255 pounds after playing at 240-245 last season.

"I want to play the season as big as I can and keep my quickness and speed."

The extra weight and strength is something he feels will help him on the field.

"The extra weight helps you a lot on the field. If you put an F-150 against a Mack truck, the Mack truck is going to win. You need weight, strength, mass, and size on the field."
 9 years ago '04        #4803
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GABLES, Fla. -- Marcus Forston was one of Miami's top signees in the 2008 class as the nation's top defensive tackle prospect according to ESPN.com.

There were high expectations placed on Forston that he would come in right away and be a dominant player.

Instead, Forston had an average freshman year recording 18 tackles in 12 games, making one start.

"He was a freshman," head coach Randy Shannon said. "He made some plays and made some not-so-good plays. It's just the learning process. Now he's got to get better from last year."

Forston's efforts, which also included 4.5 tackles for a loss and three sacks on the season were good enough to garner Freshman All-American honors although he felt he made his fair share of mistakes.

"It went up and down," Forston said. "I made a lot of freshman mistakes. As the year went by, my body started to wear down as a freshman. When I was tired, I would tend to forget things and I had mental errors."

Forston, up to 6-foot-2 and 306 pounds, has been working hard in the weight room to earn more playing time this season and take the next step into being a dominant player like he was at Northwestern.

"This year there is a lot of--I wouldn't say pressure--but there is a job that I have to get done this year and that's being an anchor on the front line," Forston said. "The defense is not going to work without the monsters in the front."

Forston is currently running with the second-team with Josh Holmes behind Allen Bailey and Joe Joseph, who are on the first team.

"He's doing a nice job of running around and picking up the defense and you can see him taking that next step," Shannon said. "But like anything, as a defensive lineman, coaches want more all of the time."

Bailey, who moved to defensive tackle prior to spring practices from defensive end, is adjusting to the position well according to Forston.

"He's been doing great," Forston said. "A guy 300 pounds moving like that, he's very agile and very athletic. That's just a lot of pressure on the guards when we face them."

This spring, Forston is taking a more conscious effort to play at a high level as one of his goals this spring.

"Just taking over every play," Forston said. "Every time I am in there, I am going to go 110 percent and beat up the man that is in front of me."

The Hurricanes have completed six spring practices thus far of their NCAA allotted 15 for the spring.

"Things have been going good right now," Forston said. "Everyone is getting better and just getting back out here is a good feeling."

So is this the year Forston has a breakout season?

"Yes. Definitely this year is going to be the year."
 9 years ago '04        #4804
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CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- It is been no secret that the new offensive system being installed by coordinator Mark Whipple will run through the running backs.

One of Whipple's primary objectives that he says he will work to achieve is getting his running backs in one-on-one situations against linebackers.

That is one gameplan that Miami running back Graig Cooper is confident that he can excel in.

"That is something that we practice everyday," Cooper said. "It is exciting to be matched up with a linebacker because we can shake him and do what we have to do to get past them."

"It is a pro-style offense and it is exciting. Coach Whipple is the type of coach who will put the ball in the playmakers hands."

Cooper finished his sophomore season with 841 yards and four touchdowns while averaging 4.9 yards per carry. He also finished second on the team in receptions (29) while posting 113 receiving yards on the season.

He bettered his freshman year numbers in which he ran for 682 yards and four touchdowns while catching just 13 passes.

This spring will be Cooper's third at Miami. With his role firmly cemented as the team's number one running back, Cooper says his primary goal this spring is to learn the new offense.

"I just want to get the offense down pat so we can go into next season confident and ready to play," Cooper said.

According to Cooper, the offense was tough to pickup at first, but now he is starting to understand the basic intricacies.

"When it first started I thought it was real tough, but then once you get in it more then you just realize that it is about simple concepts and once you get those down then you are going to be good," Cooper said.

Through the course of the offseason Cooper says he would like to gain about 10 pounds by Fall camp so he can weigh about 210 pounds by the beginning of the 2009 season.

"I want to gain ten more pounds," Cooper said. "I have until August to do it, but I need to put on about ten more pounds."

With four offensive linemen leaving after their senior year's Cooper says he is impressed by the new group of offensive linemen that are blocking for him.

"Those new guys coming in are catching on so fast and doing so well," Cooper said. "The offensive linemen who are coming back are doing a good job too. I see them doing good and giving the quarterback time to throw the ball and opening holes for us."
 9 years ago '04        #4805
booie4 
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CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- Today was the seventh day of spring practices. Find out which players stood out, which players were on first and second team, which players were held out, and more in this practice report.

The team was in full pads today.

Former Hurricane and current NFL superstar Ed Reed was at practice.

Other former Canes Derron Thomas and Spencer Adkins were also at practice.

Also, there were a number of coaches at practice, who were at UM for a coaches' clinic.

************************************************** *********

News & Notes

? WR Tommy Streeter caught two 50-yard touchdowns passes from Jacory Harris and Cannon Smith during 11-on-11s. Streeter caught a 50-yard touchdown over the middle as CB Chavez Grant tried to go for the strip, but Streeter broke free and ran towards the end zone 30 more yards for the score. On the second touchdown, Streeter beat CB Brandon McGee, who slipped on the play. Smith's pass was wobbling in the air, but Streeter maintained his focus and came down with the ball, which was thrown near the goal-line.

? S Vaughn Telemaque returned an interception 65 yards for a touchdown. Jacory Harris' pass was intended for Leonard Hankerson, which was tipped by Hankerson and picked off by Telemaque who had been looking for his first big play this spring.

? TE Richard Gordon caught two touchdowns from Jacory Harris, both inside the red zone. He beat JoJo Nicolas on the first play despite a holding penalty on the play. On the second touchdown, Gordon ran a pick play with TE Daniel Adderley and CB Chavez Grant was late on the switch with S Vaughn Telemaque.

? WR LaRon Byrd continued his very solid spring with a pair of touchdowns as he broke a tackle by CB Ryan Hill for a 15-yard score. Byrd showed his game-breaking ability later in practice as he ran a stop-and-go route beating CB DeMarcus Van Dke on the play as Taylor Cook threaded the pass in between Van Dke and Jared Campell during 7-on-7s resulting in a 65-yard touchdown. During two-minute offense, Byrd caught three straight passes from Jacory Harris.

? S Jared Campbell was very active again today in practice and has been a pleasant surprise. Campbell, playing second-team safety, was a forgotten man until this spring where he has taken advantage of his opportunity. Campbell had a pair of picks in a practice earlier this week, but today he really showed his ability to tackle, something last year's safeties struggled with at times. Campbell was very physical making a number of hard hits.

? When working on short yardage runs, the offense reeled off five consecutive touchdowns from the 3-yard line as Graig Cooper and Javarris James each scored a pair and Lee Chambers added another one as the backs went left, right, and up the middle for their scores. S Jared Campbell stopped the streak with a tackle on Lee Chambers. Mike James scored on the next play.

? LB Arthur Brown continues to be around the ball and is not afraid to come up with a big hit. Brown has a lot to prove thisspring to the coaches that he can be counted on and is looking to make a difference. He has a very quick burst and is doing a nice job playing middle linebacker where he can move around more than when he was locked down to one side of the field.

? QB Jacory Harris found WR Kendal Thompkins in the end zone for a 20-yard touchdown pass as time expired during a two-minute drill. Harris bought time by stepping up in the pocket allowing Thompkins to come free in the middle of the end zone. Thompkins jumped up to make the play as Chavez Grant was late in making a play.

? DE Olivier Vernon forced a fumble on QB Cannon Smith and recovered the ball as Smith was about to throw.

? DE Andrew Smith remains a first-team defensive end on the left side replacing Steven Wesley. Also, RT Ben Jones got some reps on the first team with Matt Pipho out.

? DE Adewale Ojomo has gained 10 pounds from last season and is up 255. Ojomo says he was inconsistent last year and is working on being more consistent this year. Also, he talked about being late to team meetings and classes which he vows to change this year.

Freshman Watch

? There are six freshmen who have enrolled early: RB Mike James, OLs Brandon Washington and Jermaine Johnson, DE Oliver Vernon, DT Curtis Porter, and CB Brandon McGee.

? Running backs coach Tommie Robinson constantly was reminding RB Mike James to get his pad level low when running through the pads during drills.

Injury and Status Updates

? TE Tervaris Johnson was wearing a green jersey during practice which means he is a non-contact player.

? WR Travis Benjamin was held out during practice with a minor injury he suffered from track.

? DE Eric Moncur and LB Colin McCarthy are injured players who rehabbed during practice.

? TE Dedrick Epps (torn ACL) and OL Joel Figueroa (right arm surgery) will be out this spring.

Recruits in Attendance

? 2009 UM signees Lamar Miller and Stephen Plein were at practice.

Next Practice

The Hurricanes return to the practice field Saturday morning for their first scrimmage of the spring.
 9 years ago '04        #4806
booie4 
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CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- Today was the first scrimmage of the spring. Find out which players stood out, what the big plays were, and which eight recruits with UM offers were in attendance.

Today was the eighth practice and the team was in full pads today.

There were a number of 2010 recruits at practice, which are listed at the end of the report.

************************************************** *********

Coach Randy Shannon Opening Statement

"Today was a good scrimmage and we had a lot of good things. There were too many turnovers today from the second team offense. When we got in the end-zone though with the first team, you can't turn the ball over. We ran the ball well though on offense and Jacory made some nice throws. Defensively we made some big hits and we got a couple of turnovers which is what you want to see from a defense."

News & Notes

? RB Graig Cooper threw a 45-yard touchdown pass to WR LaRon Byrd after QB Jacory Harris threw it to Cooper on a swing. Byrd beat CB Ryan Hill on the play and was wide open.

? Freshman CB Brandon McGee returned an interception 35 yards for a touchdown and dove into the endzone for the score off of Cannon Smith's errant pass.

? LB Arthur Brown and DB Randy Phillips laid the biggest hits of the spring, which drew quite a buzz around the field. With the offense facing a goalline situation, Brown laid out RB Lee Chambers behind the line of scrimmage with a loud pop. Brown was very active in the scrimmage and continues to excel as the second-team middle linebacker. Phillips popped Streeter on a pass that was over the middle of the field. Streeter got up slow but was ok to continue practice. "Those are big hits that changed the momentum of the game," Shannon said.

? QB Jacory Harris had a very good day. He opened the scrimmage completing his first 17 passes. He moved well out of the pocket, found receivers all over the field, and looked very comfortable with pressure. Harris needed a day like this to a.ssert himself as the leader of the team and a more than capable quarterback.

? The first team offensive line did a good job of giving Jacory Harris time to throw. Harris was sacked very few times during the scrimmage.

? QBs Taylor Cook and Cannon Smith were inconsistent. Smith received the first reps with the second team, but Cook moved the ball better down the field throughout the scrimmage. It appears Cook will firmly cement himself as UM's number two quarterback. "Both of them have a long ways to go to where we want them at as a football team," Shannon said. "We just have to keep pounding away next week and get those guys going."

? S Vaughn Telemaque picked off Harris in the endzone for his second interception in as many days. Telemaque is really starting to come into his own as a first-team safety, which the coaches are very high on.

? DE Adewale Ojomo had a very good day on defense, recording two sacks while going against tackle Jermaine Johnson. He also blocked a 37-yard field goal attempt by Jake Wieclaw.

? WR Kendal Thompkins made a great read on a roll out as he cut in front of a defender instead of running the correct route, which resulted in a nice 15-yard gain. It seems like a simple play, but we have not seen that out of the UM receivers in recent years to improvise and get open. Most receivers would have stayed behind the defender and ran the right route, but Thompkins did a great job of reading the play and making a play. He's having a very good spring and is performing better than WR Thearon Collier, who was second on the team in receiving last year, as a slot receiver.

? TE Daniel Adderley makes catches. It's as simple as that. This is a guy that wasn't expected to be on the team this spring as coach Randy Shannon announced he would transfer. But Adderley stayed and is having a good spring. He made a great play in the middle of the field as he used his 6-foot-6 size to outjump CB DeMarcus Van Dke for a 15-yard gain.

? RBs Graig Cooper and Lee Chambers each had 1-yard touchdown runs.

? K Jake Wieclaw had field goals from 41 and 37 yards out blocked. DeMarcus Van Dke and Adewale Ojomo were in on the blocks. All of Wieclaw's extra-point attempts were good. Matt Bosher continues to be out this spring with an injury.

? LB Sean Spence had his best practice of the spring as he made a number of tough tackles, particularly on Javarris James behind the line of scrimmage. He made one sack on the day and numerous tackles for loss.

? RB Lee Chambers injured his shoulder during one run when he tried to stiff-arm safety JoJo Nicolas. Chambers was screaming in pain after the play.

Freshman Watch

? There are six freshmen who have enrolled early: RB Mike James, OLs Brandon Washington and Jermaine Johnson, DE Oliver Vernon, DT Curtis Porter, and CB Brandon McGee.

? CB Brandon McGee returned an interception 35 yards for a touchdown and dove into the endzone for the score off of Cannon Smith's errant pass.

? RB Mike James had a very good day, picking up yards in consistent 6-15 yard chunks. James looked like a very versatile back that looked comfortable catching the ball out of the backfield and making the tough inside runs. "He doesn't look like a freshman," Shannon said. "He is a smart kid that is picking up the offense well. We have added on some stuff in practice for him, but he is catching the ball well and running the ball good and that is going to make Javarris and Cooper better."

Injury and Status Updates

? TE Tervaris Johnson was wearing a green jersey during practice which means he is a non-contact player.

? WR Travis Benjamin was held out during practice with a minor injury he suffered from track.

? DE Eric Moncur and LB Colin McCarthy are injured players who rehabbed during practice.

? TE Dedrick Epps (torn ACL) and OL Joel Figueroa (right arm surgery) will be out this spring.

Recruits in Attendance

? A number of 2010 recruits were in attendance including ones with UM offers: DT Todd Chandler, CB Lamarcus Joyner, RB Eduardo Clements, WR Chris Dunkley, WR James Louis, OL Torrian Wilson, DE Lynden Trail, OL Shane McDermott, and OL John Ragoo.

? Other key 2010 recruits in attendance: DE Delvin Jones, TE Charles Fashaw, LB Rashad Gaitor, QB Turner Baty, K Michael Palardy, OL Perry Meiklejohn, OL Zachary Soto, and OL Patrick Ready.

Next Practice

The Hurricanes are off until Tuesday afternoon.
 9 years ago '04        #4807
booie4 
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Brandon McGee took advantage of the opportunity to enroll early and it's given him the chance to show that he can be a solid cornerback the University of Miami can rely on in 2009.

The 'Canes hosted their first of threes scrimmages of the Spring in front of the media and plenty of recruits Saturday morning, but for McGee it was his final workout of the Spring as he will have surgery to repair a broken finger on his right hand.

He needs to have two pins inserted into the finger to stabilize it and coach Randy Shannon felt it was best to protect his team's future at cornerback.

"I have to have surgery on my finger so this will be my last scrimmage. I broke it like a month ago doing one-on-ones. I need to have a couple of pins put in my finger. I'll be out about six weeks," McGee said. "I had a spiral fracture between on my right hand. I got to get two pins in it."

Ironically, the teammate that was involved in the injury with McGee was freshman running back Mike James who also happens to be McGee's roommate. However, it didn't stop him from coming up with a huge play that wowed the people in attendance.

"Man, you just do it (catch the bal), you don't think about it. I've been going through the whole spring with a broken finger," McGee said. "It happened in one-on-ones with Mike James, my roommate, he went one way, I went the other and my finger got caught in some UnderArmour gear."

Saturday morning McGee made the most of his final opportunity to impress the coaches. He picked off a Cannon Smith pass on a post that was intended for Tommy Streeter and returned it about 40 yards for a touchdown that he capped with an acrobatic dive over would be tacklers allowing him to score for the defense.

"I just went out and played a.ssignment football. I knew my a.ssignment. I went out and played my a.ssignment football. Before the play, I was just told to watch the down and distance and it's just a matter of getting confidence," McGee said. "I was just hungry to get into the end zone. After getting an interception you just want to make a play."

McGee played a majority of his senior year at Plantation at safety. He was always projected as a corner so this is first extended time at corner. He said the change hasn't been that difficult.

"It's been a smooth transaction being that I was still on the defensive side of the ball. Even though I played safety, I was playing a lot of corner as well as offense so it's been a smooth transaction. I honestly think playing quarterback actually helped me more on the defensive side of the ball than playing safety did," McGee said.

He did enjoy the opportunity to take part in the scrimmage though after having worked out for the past two weeks even though he was in need of surgery.

'It definitely is (fun), in practice you get tired of hitting each other. In the scrimmage, everything is live and it's definitely a great experience," McGee said.

Prior to the scrimmage, McGee was working with the second unit. He has said in the past that he looks up to the older corners on the team and he bares a strong resemblance on the field to the way Brandon Harris carries him.

But those older players like DeMarcus Van Dke and Chavez Grant need to watch out because McGee can just as easily take their spot based on what defensive backs coach Wesley McGriff has told him.

"Playing time, it's totally up to me, Coach McGriff made it clear that the best players are going to play. I look up to those guys. I take a lot of information from them. I'm still learning the game. That's the reason I came here early to learn the game. Playing time is totally up to me," McGee said. "The past couple of days I've been working with the second group."

McGee's improved play is attributable to his comfort level as he's picked up corner fairly quickly for someone who's really never played the position competitively.

"I am definitely getting comfortable. I was talking to Brandon Harris and it was just a matter of me getting more comfortable in my scheme and playing with more swagger. Me and him always talk about playing with more swagger and not being a robot, bringing your own style to it," McGee said.

But for now, McGee will watch from the sidelines and hope that he doesn't fall behind because of missed playing time.

"I talked with coach Shannon about it. I am feeling pretty confident about it. I don't think it will set me back at all," McGee said.
 9 years ago '04        #4808
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CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- According to University of Miami quarterback Jacory Harris the offense is way ahead of where they were at this point last spring.

After today's mid-spring scrimmage held at the Greentree Practice Fields Harris says he feels confident that the team is learning and excelling in the new scheme installed by Mark Whipple.

Harris started the scrimmage completing his first 17 passes and showed a strong command of the offense.

"I think this offense is season ready where as last year at this time we were just beginning to get spring ready," Harris said. "I think right now we are at the point that we were at last year."

"The first team offense did real good. We came out on the first drive and scored. We kind of sputtered a little bit on the next drive. I think the invisible man was sacking me because I just backed up and the whistle blew and I was like what is going on? I just wanted to go out and make some plays happen."

Harris says the execution of the offense was as good as he could have expected. The first team committed very few mental errors even though the defense was throwing a lot of complex schemes at Harris and the first team.

"We didn't have a lot of mental errors today," Harris said. "We came out and executed the offense well. We went through the script and I don't think we made many mistakes if any."

"The defense was mixing it up. They were dropping back eight defenders on one play and then blitzing guys on the next play. I love the defensive coordinator. He is a cool guy and he throws a lot of defenses at us to try and get in our heads but we are going at him."

Harris says he believes the offense has picked up the new scheme so quickly because of the coaching style of Mark Whipple.

"I think because of the fact that coach Whipple throws a lot at us," Harris said. "He will give us 40 plays in one day and then we will go out and practice and put them into our memory. I guess that is what has helped us and basically everybody knows the offense. Nobody is really messing up and forgetting everything. The only thing is alignment and who is supposed to be on the ball and off and things like that."

One player who has impressed Harris this spring is true freshman running back Mike James.

"Mike is somebody who is a hard worker and I think he will get a lot of playing time because of his work ethic," Harris said. "He is a downhill runner. He doesn't try and avoid the defender, he is going to try and bulldoze you. He is going to make plays happen and he has got real good hands."

Harris says he experiences no pain in his shoulder while he is playing football. He says he only feels pain in the morning when he wakes up.

"My shoulder only hurts when I go to sleep," Harris said. "When I wake up in the morning I have to move it around a little bit. I feel like it is going to be like this for a little while, so I am used to it."

Harris started two games for Miami this season and received action in every game. He finished the year completing 60 percent of his passes for 1,195 yards and 12 touchdowns with just seven interceptions.
 9 years ago '04        #4809
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Palm Beach Central offensive lineman Shane McDermott committed to the University of Miami earlier this evening.

After visiting the Canes' scrimmage on Saturday, McDermott decided today that Coral Gables would be his future home.

He talked about why he made the decision so quickly after saying he expected to wait a couple more months before a commitment.

"When I went there (Miami), I just fell in love with it and I met coach Shannon and the offensive line coach, coach Stoutland," McDermott said. "As soon as I met them, we hit it off and he (Stoutland) was a guy I could really relate to. He made me feel right at home and I was excited to become a Cane, once a Cane, always a Cane, I say."

McDermott also mentioned a book he read that was just one of many factors in why he made his decision.

"I read a book called Cane Mutiny, and it was just amazing with the tradition and all the history that has gone through the school," McDermott said. "All the passion for the program just made it seem like home, and there's nothing better out there I believe."

McDermott talked about what he thinks were the biggest factors in his decision and whether he is 100 percent committed to Miami.

"The biggest thing I believe is the relationship with coach Stoutland and that it's an hour away from my house," McDermott said. "I'm done (with other schools), I'm not messing around like that. My parents told me that you make a commitment and you're done, so I'm not going to fool around with anybody."

McDermott went on to talk about how he knew he was ready to make the call so early in the process when many other kids wait until later.

"I believe I was really impressed, and I was just thinking about it driving home from Miami on Saturday," McDermott said. "Just seeing it as the perfect fit and I believe it will not get any better from now on, and it's so close to home."

McDermott talked about how Coach Shannon reacted to his commitment and how Shannon is looking forward to seeing more of McDermott in the future

"He said 'welcome to the family', and he talked about how excited they are and to come down (and visit) as much as you can," McDermott said.

McDermott talked to some of the current Miami offensive linemen at the scrimmage, and he talked about what they told him to expect at Miami.

"I talked to a bunch of the offensive lineman and Coach Stoutland allowed me to come in early and sit in their meeting," McDermott said. "They (the offensive lineman) said that it's a tradition, a pleasure, and an honor that you are just one person going to this school. They play as a team so if one person falls, the whole team falls. They explained how they love Coach Stoutland, and it was a great experience because I got along with the offensive lineman really well."

McDermott talked about his academic situation and his intentions at this point are to graduate early and come to Miami in the spring.

"I'm planning on enrolling early, I just got off the phone with Coach Stoutland about that and he said it would be a great opportunity to allow him to coach me a lot," McDermott. "I have the grades for it, I have a 3.3 (GPA), so it would be a great opportunity to have a spring under my belt coming into freshman year."

McDermott had a brief message he wanted to send to all the Cane fans out there.

"I'd say that I'm part of the Cane family now, and I'm staying," McDermott said.

McDermott (6-3, 281) chose the Hurricanes over offers from West Virginia, Cincinnati, Vanderbilt, Stanford, Colorado State, South Florida, Central Florida and Florida International.

He is Miami's fourth commitment for the 2010 class joining defensive tackles Todd Chandler and Louis Nix, and wide receiver Quinton Dunbar.

************************************************** *********************

ESPN Evaluation: McDermott is a very solid offensive lineman that has the versatility to play any of the interior positions but is best suited for center or guard. He is a little undersized but has good toughness and athleticism. Really gets after down linemen and linebackers. Comes out of his stance with a flat back and good leg drive. Consistent at maintaining power angles throughout the block and demonstrates excellent leg drive. Gives excellent effort downfield and backside of the play. Sometimes finds it tough to finish blocks against bigger defenders but really is a f!ghter. Uses hands well but pack a more jolting first blow delivery. Does show the ability to lock the hands into the frame of the defender. Good lineman in space; slips to linebacker depth with ease, moves well and can adjust his course to level two and three defenders. McDermott has the chance to be a very solid offensive lineman at the next level but will need to add some bulk and overall strength to go along with his active feet. He is a very good technician and has real toughness. His effort and overall mobility is what coaches look for in a lineman. He can develop into a major contributor at the next level.
 9 years ago '04        #4810
booie4 
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CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- Redshirt freshman wide receiver Tommy Streeter may have missed the 2008 season, but he surely has made up for the lack of field time with plenty of bumps and bruises already in the Spring.

In Saturday's practice he was the recipient of probably the most vicious hit of the day when safety Randy Phillips decleated him on a crossing route over the middle. Phillips put his helmet right on Streeter's chin sending the redshirt freshman to the ground and unable to get up for a few seconds.

But even before that hit, Streeter had a nice welt on his forehead from practice on Friday.

"That's from yesterday," Streeter said of the welt that was very visible on his head.

Although it took him a few seconds to get up following Phillips' hit which sent the crowd in attendance into a ruckus, Streeter confirmed he was okay.

"I feel good. I am just still learning trying to get feel getting better everyday. I had a delay crossing route. I had to cross the field. I seen Randy in my rearview, I seen him pressing his defender and kind of he didn't follow him, he dropped in a zone. I checked back at the quarterback, he was throwing me the ball, I knew I had to hold on to it just get prepared to brace myself for the hit, just had to hold on to the ball," Streeter said. "I just had to gather myself, kind of got rattled up or shaken up a bit, but I was alright."

But Streeter did feel the hit even though he didn't want to admit it in front of the mass of reporters. He was more frank with InsideTheU.com.

"Yeah you know, he hit me. I held on to the ball so once it was time to get up I didn't have all my energy to do so, so I had to take a moment, I knew it would be a little second for me to gather myself. Once I found the strength I just got back up," Streeter said.

Phillips admitted after practice that after a second he felt bad about it because Streeter is his teammate and the last thing he wants to do is hurt a teammate in a Spring practice or any practice for that matter.

"There's no need to feel bad about it. It's a job. My job is to catch the football and hold on to it," Streeter said.

And he did hold on to it which is the key. He showed the ability to take a big hit on a crossing route, something that coaches have to be pleased with.

Streeter felt his day was okay overall.

"I kind of got frustrated here and there cause I was taking bad angles on blocking plays. Other than that I felt pretty good," Streeter said.

But being back on the field is something he's enjoying every second of.

"Every practice it feels good to be out there being that I missed the whole season so everyday I am out there I have an opportunity to get better you know to compete for a starting position, just being out there with my teammates feels good," Streeter said.
 9 years ago '04        #4811
booie4 
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CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- Redshirt freshman right tackle Ben Jones just wants to use this spring as an opportunity to get comfortable on the football field again.

Jones sat out the majority of the 2009 season because of surgery he had on a knee injury he sustained during his 11th grade year.

Now Jones says he feels 100 percent healthy and he is ready to compete for the starting right tackle job with senior Matt Pipho.

"The biggest challenge has just been bouncing back from my injury and still showing that I can play," Jones said. "It feels good to be back now and off injury. It is good to be playing alongside Brandon Washington in this new offense, so everything is coming along well."

Jones has always been a natural at right tackle. That was the position he played as a senior for the 2007 Northwestern team that won the National Championship.

He has all the physical tools to be a very good right tackle for Miami early in his career, but Jones knows he will need to improve his technique and mental approach to the position.

"I feel extremely comfortable there because I played there in high school and I just feel right there," Jones said. "I just don't want to make any mental errors. That is always my goal. I love competing so I come out here focused and ready to play hard and win."

"You can never stop getting better. You can always improve on everything. You can improve your hands, steps, and technique. You can improve on everything."

During goal-line situations, Jones often works with the first team offense at right tackle because he is considered a very strong run-blocker.

Even though he sat out the majority of the 2008 season with an injury, Jones says he still managed to improve his body. According to Jones, he has managed to drop weight and gain strength since he arrived at UM during the summer of 2008.

"When I came in I was at 320 and now I am at 305," Jones said. "I lost some of the fat though and put on muscle so I have gotten stronger."

One player who Jones says he is really paying attention to and listening to is senior left tackle Jason Fox, who is the unquestioned leader of the offensive line after starting at that position for the past three season.

"He is like a mentor to us," Jones said. "He shows us right from wrong and corrects us with the playbook and stuff like that."
 9 years ago '04        #4812
booie4 
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CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- Of all the freshmen who decided to enroll early from the 2009 recruiting class, running back Mike James shined the brightest during Miami's recent scrimmage on Saturday.

James looked like he belonged in the first scrimmage of his Miami career. He ran the ball with a lot of confidence and looked very versatile at times catching the ball out of the backfield.

Even Miami head coach Randy Shannon, who doesn't like to heap praise on his players during the spring, was impressed by James during the scrimmage.

"He doesn't look like a freshman," Shannon said. "He is a smart kid that is picking up the offense well. We have added on some stuff in practice for him, but he is catching the ball well and running the ball good and that is going to make Javarris and Cooper better."

Following the scrimmage, James said that he felt good about his performance.

"I think I did fair," James said. "There is still room for improvement. I had two mental errors that were two too many. For me to help out my team I am going to have to eliminate that, so I did ok out here."

The play of the scrimmage that James was most proud of was inside the red-zone when he took a screen pass at the 15-yard line down to the four-yard line while picking up a critical first down and setting up an eventual touchdown for the offense.

"When I got the first down by the end-zone on the screen was the play that helped my team out most," James said of his favorite play of the scrimmage. "I feel like I contributed a lot on that one."

While his performance in Saturday's scrimmage will undoubtedly help his position on the depth chart, James says he isn't worried about that right now. He just wants to see the field any way he can.

"Right now I am not worried about depth chart," James said. "I just want to help my team out right now. Wherever I land up on the depth chart, I just hope that I can make a difference at that spot. It doesn't matter if I am third or first or fifth on the depth chart I just want to help the team."

"I think I have a good chance to get on the field and do some things."

James says his primary goal of the spring is to just get comfortable with football at the college level so he will legitimately be ready to compete during fall camp.

"I am working on my maturity and adapting to the speed of the game," James said. "I want to just try and adjust as quickly to how things will be in the game as much as I can before the season. I am doing a good job of getting used to the speed, but I don't feel like I am there 100 percent right now."

"[Enrolling early] helps a lot. I can adapt to the game and the speed and learn the plays. I can take the hits and see what that feels like in college. I am glad I came in early."

James ran for 1,200 yards and 12 touchdowns as a senior at Ridge Community High School.
 03-10-2009, 10:47 AM         #4813
The Lefty  OP
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Wellington (FL) Palm Beach Central High School OL Shane McDermott says he grew up dreaming of playing for Miami.

And now that dream will be coming true.

McDermott received a Hurricane offer three weeks ago, and today he took that offer.

"I committed to Miami this morning," the 6-foot-3, 265-pounder said. "I talked to the offensive line coach, coach (Jeff) Stoutland. I called coach Stoutland and said that I want to be part of the Cane family. He was very excited.

"The reason I committed so early is I was there during the Saturday scrimmage and I believee it doesn't get any better than that. I figure I'll be happy there, and I can't wait to be part of the Cane nation."

He may be part of that nation sooner rather than later: McDermott says he's working to graduate early. He's extremely bright - he has a 3.3 grade-point average.

"Coach Stoutland said that would be great," McDermott said. "I like coach Stoutland a lot. When I got there I related to him. He's a great guy, and I love the way he coaches. He seemed like a guy I could get along with."

McDermott got in touch with Randy Shannon this afternoon.

"He said `Welcome to the family,'" McDermott said. "He talked about me getting back down there as much as possible. We had a 45-minute talk on Saturday about things. He's just a great guy, and I think he's going to be there a while because he's an alumni and that's his dream job."

McDermott says the Canes are recruiting him to play center. He played left tackle last season and was a center as a sophomore.

"He's the perfect fit for Miami," Palm Beach Central coach Rod Harris said. "He has the frame to be a 300-pound center for them. He'll be a leader for them,a hard worker. He's one of e finest student-athletes I've been around. On the field he's mean, and I mean that in a good way - he has a k!ller instinct.

"He told me when he started this that when he found a place he liked he was going to commit."

McDermott lists eight other offers: West Virginia, Cincinnati, Vanderbilt, Stanford, Colorado State, USF, UCF and FIU.

He says now that he's committed, he's done with other schools.

"I talked it over with my parents, and they said once you're done, you're done," McDermott said. "I believe in being loyal. So I'm not taking any visits, going anywhere. I'm committed to the Hurricanes. Once a Cane, always a Cane."

McDermott says he decided to make the quick commitment after watching the scrimmage because "when I went down there I finally got to see all the facilities, meet some of the players.

"I spent a lot of time with the offensive linemen. I went there early (on the day of the scrimmage), hung out with them."

McDermott says he got compared to a former Cane player by Stoutland.

"He said I remind him of K.C. Jones," McDermott said.
Solid OL pickup. Im hearing he'll be a 4 star..

 9 years ago '04        #4814
booie4 
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wide receiver Leonard Hankerson is now the veteran of the wide receiving corps. Hankerson is entering his junior season at Miami and the only upperclassman at the position on the UM roster. "It is hard to believe," Hankerson said. "The years have gone by so fast and all the young guys have been here a year now and they are a good group of guys. We all try to work hard and lead each other every day." As a sophomore in 2008, Hankerson totaled 140 yards and two touchdowns on 11 receptions. His freshman year, he caught six passes for 63 yards and one touchdown. This spring Hankerson says he is just looking to become a more consistent receiver for Miami. Throughout his career at UM, Hankerson has been a enigmatic at times as he would show flashes of great talent and then at other times he would struggle with catching the football. "I am just working hardest on consistency and catching the ball every day," Hankerson said. Hankerson says his primary problem as a receiver is not looking the ball into his hands before he looks to make a run after the catch. "I just want to come out here and look balls in and make the catch," Hankerson said. "I need to not worry about running with the ball before I make the catch. I just need to worry about catching the ball." This spring alone, Hankerson has looked very good on some days and then struggled with dropping the ball on very catchable passes. Despite his inconsistent play this spring, the coaches have shown their faith in Hankerson's ability by giving him the start with the first team offense alongside Aldarius Johnson in UM's recent scrimmage on Saturday. "The practices have always been kind of up and down for me, but that is what I am trying to change and keep things up always," Hankerson said. Hankerson says that he and his teammates have done a good job of adjusting to the new offensive playbook through the first two weeks of spring. "The offense is going pretty well," Hankerson said. "We are working hard to get to know the offense and try and understand it so we can make a lot of plays. That is the main goal of the offense for us this spring is to just make some plays." Two players in particular who are helping the offense make some plays are redshirt freshman receivers Kendal Thompkins and Tommy Streeter--both of whom had to sit out last season with injuries. "They are a big help to us," Hankerson said. "They can come out here and make more plays for the offense. Just to have them out here is good to keep the entire offense going."
 9 years ago '04        #4815
booie4 
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CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- Missing a majority of the 2008 season redshirt senior safety Randy Phillips couldn't have known where his college career was going, but with the available redshirt season to him, Phillips is back for a fifth year. Saturday was his first real live action since getting hurt against Texas A&M last year and it was his hit of wide receiver Tommy Streeter on a crossing route over the middle that made Phillips feel like he was finally back. 'Oh it feels great to be out there, running around out there having fun. It feels so good," Phillips said. "The hit was alright. I kind of feel bad after the scrimmage. I don't know, that's my teammate, but I gotta start getting back used to it you know, gotta start getting back to it, that's my first real competition since I've been hurt so just to run around, it feels good. Oh yeah, it was a nice hit you know, could have been better." Phillips said hits like that do motivate him and his teammates and that his job is to make sure he is sure with his tackling. "Of course, it gets the team motivated by just making for sure tackles and taking good shots when I get a chance, but mostly making good tackles and doing my a.ssignments, just taking my time and getting back out there," Phillips said. He also had another thumping hit when he drilled Daniel Adderly on an interception by Vaughn Telemaque. "I am just trying to be physical for the team," Phillips said. "It was alright, he didn't see, I seen him, it was a great read." Phillips felt the defense performed fairly well, but has room for improvement. "We did good, we missed a lot of tackles, but that's natural for the first live scrimmage, if it would have been any better it would have scared me, you know. The offense too, they ran the ball real good, Jacory threw the ball real well. It was a great day out here," Phillips said. One of the things that Phillips took notice of was the play of the young players. "Mike James ran the ball real well. Brandon McGee played corner real well. Damien Berry, he's not a freshman, but he ran hard, he ran tough. Arthur Brown played really good," Phillips said. "He's (James) like a bigger version of Emmitt Smith, the way he cuts, his vision, he runs really tough, him and Damien Berry, they came in and did a great job for the offense running real, real tough and getting up field breaking tackles." Watching Berry perform well Saturday was exciting for Phillips because of his close relationship with the junior from Glades Central especially after watching him battle injuries his first two years. "It's really nice especially when I get to tackle him, really nice to see him out there cutting and making plays and running hard, I know he got it so it's good to see him out there doing it," Phillips said of Berry. And trying to tackle him and James proves to be tough. "Oh yeah, when you see it coming you load up or you cut them low, one of the two, depending on who the guy is, but one thing for sure you have to make that tackle, but as long as you get them on the ground they got to line up and play another down," Phillips said. This year is a year of change though for Phillips, a year of leadership and he started it by chopping off his dreads which he feels shows a level of maturity and growing up. "Getting my grown man on, taking another stage, being a good father, leader for the team, a good face for the university and just trying to do everything coach Shannon expects of me," Phillips said.
 9 years ago '04        #4816
Cap Peeler 7 heat pts
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From ESPN's inside the U:

Top defender Alec Ogletree names a top five and a leader
ESPNU 150 Watch List safety / outside linebacker Alec Ogletree told affiliate Web site NoleInsider.com, "My top five right now is Miami, Florida, Georgia, Alabama and Florida State, and Miami is my leader."

He added, "I'm going down to Miami on March 28th for their spring game. Miami was that team that I grew up watching, and I started when I was about six or so. I remember watching Sean Taylor, Ed Reed, Ray Lewis, Frank Gore, and (Clinton) Portis. (What got me on Miami was) just how they played the game of football when I was younger, so when I got older and was playing contact football, that just stayed with me."

Despite the Hurricanes position as Ogletree's early leader, the 6-foot-3 prospect does not have a timetable for his decision.

Taken from CanesTalk.com:

Read what he has to say about Miami!

“Things changed for me like overnight,” said Jeff Luc. “I was getting a little attention at first and I had offers from schools like Florida International, Western Kentucky, and South Florida, and then I started getting offers like every day from top schools.”

“I am not sure how many I have now, but I have between 15-20. I did not expect anything like this, I am learning about the process now, and I just can’t believe this is happening to me to be honest.”

It is easy to see why this is happening to Luc because his film is about as impressiv as it gets. Schools started seeing that and the offers started to come in at a fast pace.

“My most recent offers are from schools like Michigan, Syracuse, North Carolina, and Southern Cal. Before those offers, Georgia, Notre Dame, Miami, Florida, Florida State, and some others offered me. It has been very exciting.”

The 6-foot-1, 240 pound explosive linebacker talks about some of his new offers. He offered thoughts on the nine schools he just mentioned.

Michigan: “I don’t know a lot about them, but I have always loved their colors and their helmets.”

Syracuse: “I don’t know much about them yet either. I know of them, but not much about them. I know Donavan McNabb went there.”

North Carolina: “Butch Davis is there and I think he is going to do what he did at Miami and make UNC a big program. I think they are an up and coming team.”

USC: “They put a lot of linebackers in the league and I really liked the defensive coordinator when I talked to him. Pete Carroll knows what it takes put guys in the league and I like that.”

Georgia: “I have family in Georgia and I have watched a few games on T.V. I like their defense and they win a lot of games.”

Notre Dame: “They have a lot of tradition and they are in national T.V. every week, so you can’t help but to like that.”

Miami: “I grew up around Miami and I have always been a Miami fan, so I like a lot of things about them. I like their defense and the players they have produced.”

Florida: “I went there for their Junior Day and I like the way they treated me. They had their arms open as soon as I got there. I built a good relationship with Charlie Strong.”

Florida State: “Some of my family are big FSU fans, so I have seen a lot of them. I would want to play for Bobby Bowden if I went there. I want to get to know him.”

Even though things are happening quickly and schools are trying to make a big impression, the Fort Pierce native is not getting caught up in the attention.

“I am just listening to my coach and taking everything in right now. I am taking it slow because this is very new to me. It is amazing how everything has happened so quick for me and I am waking up every day not knowing who is going to offer next. It is exciting, but I am just taking advice from my coach on how to handle all of this.”

Just about every school that has offered has invited the dominant backer to visit for Junior Day. He has three visits lined up as of now.

“I will be going to Miami this weekend and then to Georgia and Florida State in March. I would like to visit every school that has offered me, but I know that is not possible. I just want to see what different schools have and see what I like about them. I think the visits will help me when I need to make my mind up.”

When could that be? Luc says it will not be soon.

“Things are changing just about every day, so I want to take my time, see who all offers me, talk to my coach about everything, take some visits, and then look at things,” explained Luc. “I am going to take everything really slow.”

He may be prepared to take the recruiting process slow, but like the growth of his offer list over the past few weeks, he plays extremely fast. He was all over the field in 2008 when he finished with 125 tackles, 22 tackles for loss, 9 sacks, 4 blocked field goals, 3 forced fumbles, 2 interceptions, 2 fumble recoveries, ad 2 blocked punts.

Luc is polite, easy to talk to, and a nice guy on the phone, but not on the field.

“I play like I always have something to prove when I am on the field. I never intend to hurt anyone, but when I hit someone, I want them to know I am there. I just play hard and I feel like nobody can stop me out there.”

That style of play combined with his speed, agility, and instincts have helped him rack up close to 20 scholarship offers. He has also been invited to play in both the U.S. Army All-American Bowl and UnderArmour All-American Bowl next January.
 9 years ago '04        #4817
Playnogames305 
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Edgerrin James, Javarris James hoping for rebound in '09


Buy PhotoUniversity of Miami running back Javarris James stretches during spring practice. NISSA BENJAMIN / MIAMI HERALD STAFF
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By BARRY JACKSON

Hurricanes running back Javarris James and his ex-Canes cousin Edgerrin James are waiting and hoping -- Javarris for an injury-free season, Edgerrin for a divorce from the Arizona Cardinals.

After a terrific freshman season (802 yards, 4.7 per carry), Javarris battled injuries and mustered 582 yards (3.7 per carry) in 2007 and 286 yards (4.2) in nine games in 2008.

Javarris thought he would be at UM for three years and admits that turning pro was ''tempting, but I didn't have a healthy season and I didn't really accomplish nothing here.'' James said his freshman year was ''good,'' his sophomore season ''average'' and ``last year was my downfall year.''

Coach Randy Shannon has challenged him to rebound. ''He had early success and everything was so easy,'' Edgerrin said. 'You've got to continue to have that hunger. The hunger is more than just showing up and putting in the workout. . . . Life is challenging him. I was working out and I said, `Man, you see what I'm doing? I'm working without someone telling me I have to be here.' I told him he's got to work much harder than in the past.''

Javarris said, ''Maybe I need to work out harder. I don't know how that's possible.'' He said Mark Whipple's offense ''is going to be fun,'' with more chances in the passing game.

Edgerrin said, 'Whipple understands the type of player he's dealing with. I never thought Javarris' style was shotgun and gadget stuff. His thing is line up like the pros do.''

Competition is fierce, with Lee Chambers, Mike James, Damien Berry, and eventually Lamar Miller pushing James and Graig Cooper. ''My job is to make sure they don't take my job away,'' Javarris said.

Edgerrin, the NFL's active rushing leader and 11th all-time, wants out of Arizona after losing his starting job in November, despite postseason playing time. Though many expect Arizona will cut him instead of paying him $5 million in 2009, general manager Rod Graves told The Arizona Republic that until ``we feel it's prudent to release him, he's here. He's still very effective.''

Said James: ``The sooner the better. That's not what I came there for [to be a backup]. I may never get the credit, but I've only been involved in one losing season. I've carried myself the right way. To run for 1,200 yards in Arizona -- that's not easy. [Some] say I'm average. It's a joke. I'm 30, but I take care of myself. I'm going to come out on top.''

• One concern this spring: at least a half dozen drops by receiver Leonard Hankerson, who says he must stop ''trying to run before I catch it.'' . . . Determined to gain speed, Aldarius Johnson is losing 20 pounds (he's already down from 225 to 214): ``I couldn't move as I wanted to last year.''

• Adewale Ojomo, who replaced Marcus Robinson at first-team end (opposite Steven Wesley), said he has nearly a dozen spring sacks. ''At some point, you have to grow up,'' Ojomo said, citing his tardiness to class last year. ``I've done a complete turnaround.''

• Robert Marve's father, Eugene Marve, said Oklahoma State told Eugene it stopped recruiting Marve because of negative feedback from UM. (UM denies criticizing Marve.) ''Robert was very hurt,'' Eugene said, adding that his son will choose among Michigan, UCLA, Oklahoma, Purdue, Texas Tech and USF.
 9 years ago '04        #4818
Playnogames305 
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UM's Jared Campbell lifting his game, inch by inch
Jared Campbell, always in the shadow of big brother Calais, is eager to make a mark of his own with the Hurricanes.
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Edgerrin James, Javarris James hoping for rebound in '09
BY SUSAN MILLER DEGNAN

Last Saturday, when University of Miami strong safety Jared Campbell tackled tailback Lee Chambers for a goal-line loss during the first spring scrimmage, you could hear the approving roar of Campbell's fellow defenders -- and Campbell -- reverberate through Greentree Practice Field.

''This year, I've been a lot more enthusiastic,'' Campbell said. 'That play was third down. It felt good. Arthur Brown had made a play like that, and I thought, `I've got to make a play like that, too.' ''

Campbell, practicing this spring behind Randy Phillips, knows all about following.

It's tough being six feet tall when you have four older brothers who tower above you. It's tougher when one of those brothers, Calais Campbell, was drafted 50th overall in 2008 and played in the Super Bowl this past season -- his first in the NFL.

''He stole my inches,'' joked Campbell, 19, three years younger and eight inches shorter than 22-year-old defensive end Calais of the Arizona Cardinals. ``Calais is 6-8. I have another brother who is 6-5, another one 6-4 and another one 6-3 ½. [Calais] stole my four inches. I always say that.''

Jared Campbell originally was offered a scholarship to play for the University of Washington but opted to join his big brother. The two are close and talk whenever possible, but the younger brother -- warm and friendly like Calais -- was not as gifted athletically.

``It was always competitive, and it was me trying to be better than my brothers -- but they set the bar.''

Jared played in two games on special teams as a freshman in 2007. Last year, he played sparingly on special teams against Charleston Southern and Florida State. He has yet to make a tackle.

''I messed up a little bit,'' he said. ``But I'm trying not to worry about the past by moving on and making sure I'm fundamentally good and giving a lot of effort.''

He knows he has never been alone in his accomplishments.

'My career has been different. It was always, `There's the little one. He's pretty good.' Then, when I came out here, Calais was the man and he got to the pros and there was a lot of, 'You've got to be just like that.' Calais works hard and hard work pays off. I've been doing that lately, but I guess I didn't put in enough effort in at first.

``That was a big shadow to follow. Still is.''

His goal for 2009? ''Do what I can to get on the field, contribute and help us win games,'' he said. ``I'm going to continue to work hard.

'Calais says, `Keep working hard. You're not starting now, but your time is going to come. If you keep working hard, you'll be ready when it does.' ''

• Adewale Ojomo has been elevated to first-team right defensive end after a dominant, two-sack scrimmage and another two sacks Tuesday.

• Tailback Graig Cooper is practicing with a splint on the ring finger of his left hand.
 9 years ago '05        #4819
Deeangoe 2 heat pts
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$13,042 | Props total: 639 639
MIAMI, Fla. -- Defensive end Steven Wesley recovered three fumbles, linebacker Sean Spence intercepted a pass, and defensive tackle Marcus Forston recorded a safety as the defense dominated the scrimmage on Thursday night in front of 4,000 fans at Traz Powell Stadium.

Senior linebacker Darryl Sharpton led the defense with eight tackles while youngsters Vaughn Telemaque, Ramon Buchanan, Arthur Brown, and Joe Wylie also had a good showing in the scrimmage.

"The defense did a lot of good things for us like creating turnovers," coach Randy Shannon said.

The defense held the offense out of the end zone for their first eight drives from the 35-yard line before Javarris James had a 6-yard touchdown run.

The offense finished with 366 total yards on 77 plays, only 4.8 yards per play.

"As a defense, they were very active as far as creating turnovers and putting pressure on the quarterbacks," Shannon said.

************************************************** *

Defensive Line Breakdown

The first team defensive line was: LE Steven Wesley, LT Allen Bailey, RT Marcus Forston, and RE Adewale Ojomo.

Wesley had a very impressive night recovering three fumbles, one sack, and two tackles. He was promoted to first team this week after playing on the second team for a while. Wesley needed to have a good night and he got it as he turned in one of the best spring practices for a lineman.

Bailey had a solid day as well although he didn't have the stats Wesley had. Bailey is adapting well to defensive tackle and provides solid pressure up front even though tackles are hard to come by.

Bailey played alongside Forston, who filled in for Joe Joseph, who was not at the scrimmage due to class obligations. Forston got to quarterback Jacory Harris in the end zone to record a safety and also did well up front.

Ojomo is playing very well as of late and didn't slow down tonight. Ojomo also recorded a sack against LT Jason Fox. Ojomo is quick off the line of scrimmage, plays with intensity, and goes after the ball. He has the chance to be a very good player if he plays with more consistency and a sense of urgency.

Second-team defensive ends Gavin Hardin (two tackles) and Marcus Robinson (four tackles, one sack) were very productive on the stat sheet. Robinson got most of his work in late during the scrimmage as he's trying to show he can be solid against the run and pass.

When healthy, Eric Moncur still appears to be the team's top defensive end, but Adewale Ojomo is making a case to being a regular starter, again, he has to stay consistent.

Defensive tackles Josh Holmes and Micanor Regis were on the second-team. Regis had three tackles.

Linebackers Breakdown

There were a few shake-ups at linebacker with first-team WLB Kylan Robinson out due to class obligations.

Ramon Buchanan filled in for Robinson and played strongside, moving Sean Spence to weakside with Darryl Sharpton still in the middle.

Buchanan had four tackles including one for a loss as he showed very good quickness in getting to the ball. Buchanan is showing excellent lateral speed this spring and is making a case for being counted on this fall. He's more than capable of playing at a high level in his career.

While Buchanan's burst is great, so is MLB Arthur Brown's. Brown had four tackles, but was around the ball a lot all night long. He plays with a lot of downhill speed when attacking a ball carrier and is a sure tackler.

Sharpton is starting to step up like coach Shannon wanted him too during his senior year. Sharpton had eight tackles and popped Richard Gordon to free up an interception for Sean Spence. Sharpton could be a big key to the defense this year if they are going to be successful. Sharpton doesn't have great speed outside of the tackles, but inside the tackles, he's very active and not afraid to go after the ballcarrier.

Spence had an interception he returned 20 yards before getting pushed out of bounds and also had three tackles.

Walk-on freshman Sean Goldstein (6-0, 225) from Dresher, Pa. played strongside linebacker tonight on the second team and recorded a pair of tackles. Goldstein has not received a lot of reps this spring, but took full advantage of the time tonight.

C.J. Holton, who was playing safety throughout the spring, switched to strongside linebacker tonight. I talked with Coach Shannon after the scrimmage to see if this was a permanent move and Shannon said it could be, but they needed someone to play linebacker with a few players out.

Defensive Backs Breakdown

DeMarcus Van Dke and Brandon Harris were paired on the first team to start the scrimmage with Ryan Hill and Sam Shields as the second-team cornerbacks.

Randy Phillips and Chavez Grant were the nickel backs on the first and second teams respectively.

Harris followed up a strong practice on Wednesday with three tackles and a pass breakup. He had another strong showing.

Hill gave up a 43-yard reception to Leonard Hankerson deep down the sideline and Phillips allowed a 25-yard touchdown reception also to Hankerson. The junior wideout would have torched another defensive back for a big play, but dropped a pass against Van Dke.

Telemaque had five tackles and did a good job of tackling the ballcarrier low. Miami needs a safety to make tackles so this was definitely a bright spot. JoJo Nicolas started alongside Telemaque although the job could be swaying towards Phillips, who also was active against the run and can make big hits.

Jared Campbell and Joe Wylie were the second-team safeties. Wylie had three tackles and a pass breakup.
 9 years ago '05        #4820
Deeangoe 2 heat pts
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$13,042 | Props total: 639 639
MIAMI, Fla. -- The University of Miami learned one thing in Thursday night's scrimmage - the offense needs work.

Quite frankly, it was a performance that looked all too similar to the past two years. At least one coach told me we were just vanilla following the scrimmage. The fans are looking for 31 flavors and something to get excited about and Thursday failed to provide that excitement.

To sum it up shortly, the 'Canes had 22 offensive drives. Jacory Harris was the quarterback in ten of those drives. Taylor Cook was the back up quarterback and he ran the offense in six of those drives. Cannon Smith was the third quarterback and he ran the team in six drives also.

In the offense's first eight drives, they got two first downs and went three and out three times, went four and out once, had an interception and two fumbles. The other drive lasted four plays.

In all, outside of Graig Cooper's 38-yard run to the 23-yard line in the fourth drive, the 'Canes amassed a sad 42 yards on 26 plays. Include Cooper's 38-yard run and that's 80 yards on 27 plays, not exactly numbers that make fans jump out of their seats.

It wasn't until the ball was fed to Javarris James on six of seven plays against a defensive line that had three second stringers on the field that the offense finally got going.

In all, the 'Canes scored only once when taking the ball from the 35-yard line, a James 6-yard touchdown run to cap the ninth drive. The drive was led by Harris, but he threw only one pass on the drive, a seven-yard completion to Richard Gordon.

Harris later threw a 25-yard touchdown pass to Leonard Hankerson on a post corner when the 'Canes took possession at the 25-yard line. Hankerson beat Randy Phillips to the corner. Hankerson left another chance at a big play on the field when he dropped a perfect pass from Harris on a bomb down the field. Hankerson had a couple of steps on DeMarcus Van Dke, but simply dropped the ball, something that's become too common with him.

Harris was also the quarterback when freshman Mike James came up with a 33-yard touchdown run on a draw play. The 'Canes started that drive at the defense's 35.

The other two scores came on field goals by Jake Wieclaw from 20 and 28 yards. Cook led one drive and Smith led the other. In both situations, the 'Canes started the possession at the 50-yard line.

Cook hit Hankerson on a 43-yard bomb giving the offense possession at the seven. Hankerson beat Ryan Hill on the play, but the 'Canes stalled after that. The next possession a 29-yard run by Cooper set up a 20-yard field goal by Wieclaw when Smith's foot was stepped on by an offensive lineman on third-and-goal from the one.

Overall, the 'Canes offense turned the ball over almost as many times as it scored in 22 possessions. Scores - 5, Turnovers - 4.

There were a few bright spots. Cooper was one of them. He led the offense with 14 carries for 112 yards, had runs of 38, 29 and 17 yards. He ran with some vigor and broke tackles on runs, something he's not done before too often.

Freshman Mike James battled hard. His first run went for 14 yards. Then he was back and forth between positive and negative runs until breaking a 33-yard run up the middle. What he showed on that play was the ability to read the blocking and use it to his advantage as he cut back on a draw play, burst up the middle and beat the defensive backs to the end zone for a touchdown. James finished with 13 carries for 46 yards and a touchdown.

Javarris James looked real good on the one drive he led, but other than that, he didn't get many other opportunities. He rushed eight times for 55 yards and a touchdown.

Junior Damien Berry rushed 10 times for 34 yards and a long of 18.

Harris finished the scrimmage 8 for 12 for 63 yards, a touchdown and an interception, but it was a far cry from his performance in last Saturday's scrimmage at Greentree when he completed his first 17 passes. He simply didn't look sharp and still clearly growing accustomed to quarterbacking from under center.

There is a major drop off though between Harris and Cook who is the 'Canes back up right now.

The offense finished with 366 total yards on 77 plays, only 4.8 yards per play. Hopefully, there will be more reasons to get excited at CanesFest March 28th at Lockhart Stadium when the 'Canes play their annual Spring Game.

Rushing

Graig Cooper 14 carries, 112 yards
Javarris James 8 carries, 55 yards, 1 TD
Mike James 13 carries, 46 yards, 1 TD
Damien Berry 10 carries, 34 yards
Jacory Harris 4 carries, -8 yards
Taylor Cook 1 carry, -2 yards
Cannon Smith 5 carries, -9 yards

Passing

Jacory Harris 8 for 12, 63 yards, 1 TD, 1 Int
Taylor Cook 4 for 8, 62 yards
Cannon Smith 2 for 4, 13 yards

Receiving

Leonard Hankerson 2 catches, 68 yards, 1 TD
Aldarius Johnson 2 catches, 21 yards
Richard Gordon 2 catches, 10 yards
Graig Cooper 1 catch, 9 yards
Mike James 2 catches, 5 yards
Javarris James 1 catch, 2 yards
LaRon Byrd 1 catch, 9 yards
John Calhoun 1 catch, 4 yards
Davon Johnson 1 catch, 8 yards
Patrick Hill 1 catch, 7 yards
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