Practice Report: August 15th

On Sunday, the team was given time off in the morning and the ability to sleep in a bit after a tough first week of practice. Practice only lasted one hour and 40 minutes mostly consisting of a lot of walk through activities, but did spend time working on the two-minute drill at the end of practice.

HEAD COACH LARRY COKER

"We did a little bit of a two-minute drill at the end today," Coker said. "Our guys have shown signs of improvement. Our veteran guys have really been stepping up and that is certainly what you look for."

WEATHER REPORT

Temperature: 89°F
Humidity: 61%
Heat Index: 97°F
Wind: 3 mph
Cloud Cover: Mostly Cloudy

QUARTERBACKS

Kyle Wright had an impressive day showing good accuracy and strength with his throws. He threw a deep ball to Roscoe Parrish which was impressive with how well the throw was timed and the velocity of the pass—two key components needed in the deep ball.

"I felt pretty good today," Wright said. "I got in there during nine-on-nine and made a couple of throws. I just want to go out there and prove every day."

He knows the team was excited to start fall practices after tough summer workouts.

"I think everybody was waiting to get out here and get things started," Wright said. "Especially with the summer we had—we put in a lot of time and hard work. We are anxious to see how it pays off."

There have been encouraging signs for the offense in the first week of practice and Wright talked about the main goal they have.

"There are definitely some encouraging signs," Wright said. "We are coming out here and proving every day. The defense was getting us the first couple of days especially the first day in pads. We just want to keep coming out and improving—that is our main goal."

All of the quarterbacks felt a lot of heat in the pocket today as the offensive line had a hard time proving ample time to make throws.

RUNNING BACKS

Tyrone Moss practiced today after taking a hit in pass protection on Thursday causing a sore shoulder and missing the last two practices. He showed good vision and ability to bounce outside for extra yards. Not known for his spectacular speed he is able to bounce outside when needed. He could surprise people this year with his speed and ability for the big run.

Talib Humphrey is still working with the first-unit as the fullback and is doing a very good job. He has good speed and athleticism out of the backfield.

The freshmen running backs did not get the reps they had in previous practices because it was a walk-through day.

Kyle Cobia was sick today and did not practice.

WIDE RECEIVERS

Roscoe Parrish was back practicing today after missing practices with a sore knee and he made a number of catches.

"He did look good today," Coker said. "He is a little bit fresher than the other guys after we kept him out the last few days. He is looking good."

Not only did he look good out there, but also he felt good.

"It felt good getting back with the offensive guys and make some plays today," Parrish said. "My knee did not give me any problems."

This past week a number of receivers have been in the mix making a number of catches.

"The receivers are coming along pretty good," Parrish said. "Coach C.J. has been correcting our mistakes out there and the next day we are trying to correct those mistakes."

Freshman Lance Leggett has good size, deceptive speed, and good hands. He has impressed the coaching staff after making a number of catches especially against his freshmen peers.

"Lance Leggett has shown some special things at the wide receiver position," said Coker.

The wide receivers were a unit hoping to improve on last season with a year of experience under their belts. With only seven receivers on scholarships practices can be tiring.

"They have definitely stepped up," Wright said. "We are running thin there especially with the running those guys do in practice. They cramp up pretty easily and other guys have been forced to step up and doing a great job."

TIGHT ENDS

Greg Olsen made some very nice catches today in traffic and did a good job of holding onto the ball. He has been used quite a bit now with Kevin Everett nursing a hip flexor. As a young player he has impressed the upperclassmen with his work ethic in the off-season and it has continued in fall practices.

"It has been my first experience for two-a-days since I did not participate in them last year," Olsen said. "So far things are going well—I am just trying to pick up the offense and trying to fine-tune everything."

Last year Olsen was released from Notre Dame and transferred to Miami arriving on campus the day after the season opener against Louisiana Tech.

"It is hard out here," Olsen said. "Fall practices are the roughest time of the year because you really find out how your team is going to be. So far it has been tough, but I really think the team is coming along doing some positive things."

Olsen, Everett, Buck Ortega, and Brandon Sebald are the four tight ends for the Hurricanes. They have been a very formidable group making a number of catching. All four are extremely athletic and have shown the ability to take the ball up field for extra yards.

"I think we have a real talented group of tight ends," Olsen said, "led by Kevin Everett who I think will be one of the better tight ends in the country. We just have a lot of guys that are getting better and I think we are going to do a lot of good things."

OFFENSIVE LINEMEN

Today's First Unit: LT Winston LG Morse C Rodriguez RG Myers RT Wimbs
Out: Butler (ankle), Tella (knee)

Redshirt freshmen Derrick Morse and Cyrim Wimbs filled in on the first unit with two upperclassmen out and coach was happy with their progress.

"They are inexperienced," Coker said. "But we are going to make that a good thing because we are going to get them more ready to play. They are certainly not ready to play against Florida State, but I have been very pleased with both of those guys."

Depth amongst the offensive line has been an area of concern especially with the defensive line being ahead in their progress. It makes the second and third units hard to function with a line not able to give ample time to the quarterbacks or holes for the backs to run through.

Tyler McMeans and Andrew Bain have been impressive on the second unit.

DEFENSIVE LINEMEN

Probably the deepest unit on the team and they have done well the last couple of days.

"I don't talk about them anymore because they have been so consistent and have been force," Coker said. "Especially the upper level guys—they are special. I think they are going to be a force to be reckoned with."

Tackle Orien Harris is ready for a huge season and ready to take his game to the national level. So far he is getting done in practice.

"We can't block Orien Harris," said Coker.

Coker also pointed out a defensive end who has been impressive as of late.

"Bryan Pata has really stepped it up," said Coker.

The defensive ends are playing with a lot of speed and making a lot of plays.

"They put a lot of pressure on the edge when we cut them loose," said defensive line coach Greg Mark. "One thing they can all do is run. The good thing and fortunate thing as coaches is we have about four guys that can help us win games and be in the rotation. When we get into the season that will catch up with the offensive linemen keeping up with our rotation."

Not only do they have good speed, but also they are also powerful.

"The other thing that gets overlooked they are also powerful," Mark said. "They have been blowing up power-o's and pulling guards. If you ask an offensive guard if they like pulling on our ends they know they have to bring their lunch pail because they know it will be an all day's work."

"I am pleased with them right now and we are still learning and trying to get better every day," said Mark.

LINEBACKERS

The guys were still getting it done today against the run. Assuming everything goes as planned the front seven will be tough to run against this season. One thing the linebackers need to continue to improve upon is their pass defense. A number of passes have gone to the tight ends over the past week and defending the pass is generally the toughest thing for linebackers to learn.

Who is supposed to cover who? When to jump routes? Do you go after a delayed pass rush?

As soon as they feel comfortable with this they could be very strong group this season.

DEFENSIVE BACKS

Kelly Jennings has been guarded this fall after having off-season knee surgery, but practiced today. He recorded an interception after jumping the route. It was a very encouraging sign for the junior starting corner who typically does not put himself in the right spot to record interceptions.

Anthony Reddick was the only freshmen moved up to work out with the upperclassmen during the summer weight-training program. Now during fall practices he is the only freshman currently on the two-deep as the second-team free safety.

"It has been hard and a bit confusing in there because the speed of the game is very fast," Reddick said. "You have to learn more here and pick it up not only when they tell you, but when you get on the field too—that is one of the hardest things so far."

Known as a very hard worker he talked about why he came in during the summer.

"I just came in trying to get an advantage over everyone else so I could get a good chance of playing this year," said Reddick.

Devin Hester is still at cornerback and is playing more under control and appears to be more comfortable.

"Devin Hester continues to improve at the cornerback position," said Coker.

INJURY REPORT

FB Kyle Cobia was sick today. He was here for the meeting in the morning, but the trainers sent him home.
Status: Day-to-day

TE Kevin Everett was held out of practice today with a hip flexor. He also has been dealing with sore shoulders.
Status: Day-to-day

OL Rashad Butler sprained his left ankle on Thursday and has not practiced the last three days.
Status: Out 1-7 days

OL Tony Tella hurt his knee on Friday and did not practice today. He attempted to practice today, but was unable to go. It does not appear to be serious, nor will it require surgery. He will attempt to practice again tomorrow.
Status: Day-to-day

CB Terrell Walden did not practice due to a torn ACL he suffered during spring practices. He will not practice anytime soon and is a long shot to play this season.
Status: Out two to five months

NEXT PRACTICE

Monday, August 16th, 8:30 a.m. (shells) & 3:30 p.m. (pads) – They are open to the public.

Christopher Stock is a Staff Writer for CanesTime and can be contacted by emailing him at stock@canestime.com.

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