The Wright Tools on Display

The future was on display Tuesday afternoon as Kyle Wright took part in the Hurricanes opening day of spring practice at Greentree Field. But don't think for a second the redshirt freshman quarterback is worried with what might happen down the road. Wright's only concern right now is the present even if UM coach Larry Coker has other immediate plans for the right-handed phenom from Danville, Calif.

"I'm itching to get in there and that's the attitude I'm bringing out here everyday," said Wright. "Coach says he wants me to compete like the job is mine and that's what I'm going to do. If that's good enough to win the job, so be it. I just come out here trying to get better, but that doesn't mean I'm not ready to play more."

Wright's desire to challenge for the Hurricanes starting quarterback position will only turn the heat up on Coker. Coker, who said earlier this month that senior Brock Berlin would be the team's starting QB for the upcoming season, reaffirmed his position after Tuesday's practice session.

"There's no question Kyle is a very talented young man and he's going to help this program at some point down the road," said Coker. "But if we were going to start the season tomorrow Brock would get the call."

But Coker did leave the door open recently by adding that he doesn't want Wright or Derrick Crudup to take it as a final decision because Berlin is starting - for now.

"Like I told you before I want Kyle to push Brock," said Coker. "That can only make us a better team."

Forget pushing Berlin. Most UM fans, if not all, believe Wright is ready to unseat Berlin. Especially after Berlin had his share of ups and downs last season. Although he threw for 2,419 yards and 12 touchdowns, Berlin was intercepted 17 times as he struggled to make reads and deliver the ball under pressure. Berlin lost the starter's role late in the season before completing 14 of 29 passes for 157 yards with two interceptions in Miami's 16-14 victory over Florida State in the Orange Bowl Classic.

"Obviously having a year under my belt makes it more comfortable in this offense," said Berlin. "I just want to go out there and make the least amount of mistakes I can."

But keeping Wright on the bench is going to be tough - no matter what Berlin does. Although he lacks the experience of Berlin and Crudup, Wright has shown the composure of an upperclassman to go with a strong arm, great size and ability to move in the pocket. Wright, 19, didn't take long to display his compete arsenal shortly after arriving before spring practice a year ago, though he was limited to work on the scout team. The only question surrounding Wright seems to be whether he can put it all together in game situations.

"We've all seen what Kyle can do in practice," said UM Offensive Coordinator Dan Werner. "But it's a little bit different when you're in a game situation. I'm sure Kyle is going to be fine, but we don't what's going to happen when he finds himself in those kind of situations."

Said Wright: "It's just a humbling experience. I was trying to stay humble knowing that my time will come."

Wright, who added 15 pounds of muscle during the off-season, admitted to being more mobile than Berlin. However, he views Berlin as a good leader on and off the field. Wright tried picking up some of Berlin's tendencies while he stayed in the background last season.

"Brock is a solid role model," said Wright. "He knows what he's doing out there."

Wright responded like a seasoned veteran - and not a player who has never completed a pass at UM - when asked what he would bring if handed the keys to the Hurricanes offense.

"I think just competitiveness, and the confidence to take this team to another level," said Wright. "I just want the chance to get the ball to the wide receivers and have fun. I want to make plays."

Chances are the kid might not have to wait very long.


Coker said that the offense has plenty of work to do after being slowed by motion penalties during the 90-minute practice. "We're not a good football team yet," said Coker. "I think the thing we're trying to stress is that we're a team. Everybody has to contribute and do their part. I think you put that helmet on with that 'U' and you think you're good - well you're not good. We're not there yet. We have work to do."

Coker did praise the defense for a 'pretty impressive' performance.....Junior Quadtrine Hill, who is listed behind Kyle Cobia at full back, received most of the reps was the featured running back. Hill was bumped up on the depth chart because projected starter Tyrone Moss sat out with a minor illness, according to Coker....Practice resumes Wednesday at 3:30 p.m.

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