Spring Preview: Quarterbacks

Spring football starts March 3rd at the University of Miami so lets take a closer look at what the team will look like. Today, we look at the quarterback position.

Coach: Jedd Fisch returns for his second season as quarterbacks coach/offensive coordinator.

Lost: Jacory Harris started for three plus seasons for the Hurricanes and had an up-and-down career. He finished his career 703-of-1170 (60 percent) with 8,826 yards, 70 touchdowns, and 48 interceptions. Harris had a career winning percentage of just over 50-percent against BCS opponents. Spencer Whipple, the son of former UM offensive coordinator Mark Whipple, is also gone. He was 6-of-12 for his career with 54 yards, 0 touchdowns, and two interceptions. Whipple may return in some type of coaching role for the Canes in 2012.

Coming Back: Junior Stephen Morris is the only quarterback returning with any previous experience at Miami. Sophomore Ryan Williams, a Memphis transfer last year, sat out the 2011 season with a redshirt.

The Players:
Morris (6-2/210) returns as the top guy on the depth chart heading into spring drills. In two seasons, he's started five games (2-3 record) and played in a few others. He's completed 108-of-190 (57%) for 1,523 yards, seven touchdowns, and 11 interceptions. He also provides a running threat the Canes have been missing for several years at the quarterback position, with 72 net rushing yards over the last two seasons.

Williams (6-6/220) started 10 games (1-9 record) at Memphis as a true freshman in 2010. He transferred to Miami in the early part of 2011 and sat out as a redshirt for the Canes. During his freshman season he completed 165-of-290 (57%) for 2,075 yards, 13 touchdowns, and 10 interceptions.

Gray Crow (6-3/230) is an incoming freshman who just graduated high school in December. He has a live arm and led his team to the state playoffs two seasons in a row. As a senior Crow completed 56-percent of his passes for just over 1,600 yards, 12 touchdowns, and 11 interceptions.

Preston Dewey (6-2/205) is another incoming freshman who is at Miami for the first time. Coached by Ty Detmer in high school, Dewey is considered a strong student of the game. He finished his junior season with 1,500 yards passing, 13 touchdowns, and five interceptions. He also added more than 200 on the ground. As a senior, Dewey played in just five games because of injury (broken non-throwing arm) but had around 800 yards and eight touchdowns.

What to Expect: The quarterback competition will be wide open going into the spring. Look for Crow and Dewey to spend most of the spring trying to learn the offense and providing some competition for the main two guys. Morris has the edge in experience at Miami, while Williams has more overall experience at the Division 1 level. They both have the same amount of time in Fisch's offense. Williams is the bigger of the two and they both have very strong arms. Morris has the edge in athleticism. A lot will depend on how each one performs in the spring and how quickly they grasp any new wrinkles in the offense. This is a quarterback competition that will likely go deep into fall camp before a starter is named.


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