Fall Camp Analysis: DT

Fall Camp is coming to an end at Miami and CanesTime's Mike Bakas takes a close look at the defensive tackle position now.

Miami plays with two types of interior defensive linemen -- nose tackles and defensive tackles.

Calvin Heurtelou was the starter at the nose position last year while playing next to Olsen Pierre. After coming to Miami in January overweight and out of shape, he got it together and turned in a solid junior season. Unfortunately, he missed the spring with an injury but has returned to solid form. He ends fall camp as Miami's best interior lineman.

Ufomba Kamalu, another former Junior College transfer, has the inside track to replace Pierre in the starting lineup. The most athletic of all the interior linemen, Kamalu has turned in a solid fall camp and coaches have even talked about how he's expected to stay on the field when UM goes into its pass rushing (or "speed") package. He had more sacks last season than every other interior lineman combined so he's shown flashes of being able to make plays.

Mike Wyche, yet another former Junior College transfer, also showed up to Miami last summer out of shape. It prevented him from getting into the rotation early in the season. The one-time USC commitment has turned in a solid offseason and has made a strong push at Heurtelou's starting spot in recent weeks.

Courtel Jenkins gives Miami a third solid option at the nose. He came in here last fall as a lightly recruited player from New Jersey and worked his way into the rotation right away, turning in a solid freshman season. He's had a solid fall camp and is expected to be heavily in the mix.

Anthony Moten has been impressive lately, including a two-sack performance in the most recent scrimmage. A former four-star recruit, Moten is very talented and is pushing Kamalu for a starting spot. Whether he ends up starting or not, Moten is expected to receive a good amount of playing time.

Earl Moore has been around awhile and is now a fifth year senior. He's expected to be a player who provides depth and could see action late in games.

The Canes have two true freshmen on the interior -- Kendrick Norton and Ryan Fines. While Fines is expected to redshirt, Norton - a one-time Florida State commitment - has been the most impressive freshman defender in fall camp. At 6-foot-3 and 320 pounds, he's been very active inside and has made a strong push over the last few weeks to receive quality playing time early in the season.

Gerald Willis, a former five-star recruit and transfer from Florida, has been practicing but must sit out this season due to NCAA transfer rules. He has a bright future here, though.

The key here is that the last few weeks have proven that this is, by far, the deepest Miami's been at this position in several year. Being strong at the nose - something that this group has the potential of being - will only help the rest of the defense, especially in the scheme Miami uses.


Canes Time Top Stories