Fall Camp Preview: Cornerbacks

Fall camp is about to begin for the Hurricanes so lets take a closer look at the team. This piece focuses on the cornerbacks.

Coach: Paul Williams (2nd season)

The Players:
Brandon McGee (6-0/190/Sr) ... 55 tackles, 4 PBU's and 1 INT
Thomas Finnie (5-10/185/So) ... 14 tackles, 1 PBU
Davon Johnson (6-0/185/Sr) ... 2 tackles
Ladarius Gunter (6-2/195/Jr)
Tracy Howard (5-11/170/Fr)
Deon Bush (6-1/180/Fr)
Antonio Crawford (5-11/180/Fr)
Larry Hope (6-0/175/Fr)
Vernon Davis (5-10/175/Fr)
Nate Dortch (5-10/150/Fr)

Top Returner: McGee has the most experience of the returning players and the best skillset. He has ideal size to go with tremendous speed and athletic ability. He struggled early in his career making the adjustment from being a prep quarterback to a major college cornerback and then he struggled with his work habits since Al Golden got the job. Still, he has a chance to put together a very good senior season for the Canes. The ability is there.

Top Newcomer: Howard is a five-star recruit from Miramar High and was recruited by everyone in America. He doesn't have the size or speed or athleticism of someone like Deon Bush or even some others in this class with him but his cover skills are incredible. His football IQ is off the charts and he has all the tools to be able to make an immediate impact for the Canes. Don't be surprised if he's in the starting lineup early in the season. He is the real deal.

Bottom Line: The Canes really need McGee to step up and have a strong season. He wasn't the leader they hoped during winter conditioning but hopefully that changed over the summer. Finnie is solid. Johnson's been a career backup who spent most of his career as a wide receiver or special teams standout. Gunter is a Juco transfer who played well at times in the spring and should be able to challenge for playing time. Hope went through spring drills as well and should be able to log some minutes. The Canes really need Howard to show up and be as good as advertised. Crawford is now one of the fastest players on the team and could challenge. Bush was recruited to play cornerback but may get a better shot at safety now that Ray Ray Armstrong is off the team, which has caused depth issues there.


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