Friday Stock Report: 3/4

After a week off, I'm back with the Friday Stock Report. Yesterday was Miami's annual Pro Timing Day with NFL general managers and scouts in attendance for the cool afternoon. Spring practices begin Tuesday followed by 13 practices and ending with the spring game on April 9. All practices are closed to the public except the spring game.

UM Pro Timing Day
Yesterday the University of Miami held its annual Pro Timing Day for Miami's NFL Draft eligible players. Miami has only 12 players eligible for the draft this year to be held April 23-24 , but a number of other players from various local schools were there as well. There was not as much buzz this year as there was a year ago when Miami had six first round draft picks. A number of former Hurricanes now in the NFL came back to watch such as Edgerrin James, Clinton Portis, Santana Moss, Andre Johnson, and Jerome McDougle. A few of last year's senior class showed up as well such as Darrell McClover, Jason Geathers, and Jerrell Weaver.

Antrel Rolle
Rolle will be Miami's first guy taken in the draft and could be the first cornerback in the draft. When addressing the media he told reporters he felt he was the best player in the draft. According to Rolle he ran the 40 in the 4.38-4.45 range and had an impressive 38" vertical jump—something that is not stressed at Miami. Overall he was pleased with his performance. After he spoke to his family and close friends, he had a meeting with Lynn Stiles who is the Kansas City Chiefs Vice President of Football Operations/Player Personnel. Stiles talked with Rolle for 15-20 minutes and was very impressed with the character of Rolle and his abilities "reminds me of Ronnie Lott." Stiles went on to mention that Lott also played cornerback early in his career before becoming one of the safeties in the NFL.

Parrish & Gore
Frank Gore was the big news of the day showing up weighing 208 pounds after playing the 2004 season at 234 pounds and it was clear by looking at him that he had lost weight. His mind was telling him one thing, but he couldn't move when he was running during the season—his body wouldn't allow it. Gore's self-reported times were 4.1 in the short shuttle and 6.8 in the L-drill. He ran the 40 in the 4.6 range. He felt he quieted his doubters with being in shape and feels he has always been an underdog. Roscoe Parrish believes he has a "good chance" to be a first-round draft pick and believes wherever he will be drafted it will be a good opportunity for him. A lot of NFL teams have asked him about his return skills and have inquired about kickoff returns, which is something he did not do at Miami. Parrish was one of the few players that worked out at NFL Combine in Indianapolis and again at Miami Pro Day. He ran a 4.34-4.35 yesterday in the 40-yard dash and was satisfied with that time.

Switching Positions
Third-year guys Dave Howell and Willie Cooper have been added to the list of guys switching positions this spring bringing the total up to six players. Howell, a sophomore, has spent the first two seasons as a reserve defensive tackle will now move to the offensive line. Willie Cooper was one of the top safety prospects in the country out of St. Augustine, but has been moved to linebacker. James Bryant (fullback), Terrell Walden (wide receiver), George Timmons (running back), and Chris Zellner (tight end) are the other four players who have switched positions. Bryant appears to be the one with the most upside out of the six and is currently highest on the depth chart at his new position.

Offensive Line
Tony Tella (shoulder) and Eric Winston (knee) are out for spring practices and Anthony Wollschlager is still feeling lingering effects of a toe injury he suffered in the fall, which could force him to miss substantial time this spring. It appears the top five guys heading into spring practices are Rashad Butler, Tyler McMeans, Derrick Morse, Alex Pou, and Andrew Bain. If those five come out on the first unit remains to be seen. Look for freshman Chris Rutledge to make an impact during spring practices at the tackle position with Tyrone Byrd not too far behind. Morse, McMeans, and Bain have all lost needed weight heading into spring practices. Offensive line coach Art Kehoe has never believed weight was a key at the position and wants his players to get under the 315 mark.

Other Notes
Quarterback Kyle Wright addressed the media during pro day after attending the event with linebacker Jon Beason. Wright told reporters that if he isn't ready by now then it is time he switch positions. He is ready to go and doesn't see the competition with redshirt freshman Kirby Freeman, but instead sees the competition with himself. He wants to go out in spring practices and show what he is capable of doing. He also talked about his friendship with LeBron James who he met in high school and still talks to. Beason is also ready to go and will start out spring practices as a strongside linebacker. Eric Winston made an appearance and you cant help but wonder where he would be at in the draft if he decided to leave early. Willie Williams will be allowed to address the media next week after being held from talking to the media since he arrived on campus in August.

Miami Hoops
The Miami basketball team concluded its 2004-05 regular season last night with a loss to Duke finishing with a 7-9 record in their first year in the ACC and first year under head coach Frank Haith. They currently have a 16-11 overall record. Guillermo Diaz leads the team in scoring averaging 18.4 points per game and Anthony King leads the team in rebounding averaging 7.9 per game. Both players are candidates for ACC honors, which will be announced next week. March 10-13 is the ACC tournament and it looks like Miami will be seeded 6-8, which means they will begin play on March 10. Possible first-round opponents are Florida State, Virginia, and Clemson. With a win against Duke Sunday, North Carolina will win the regular season title.

Miami Baseball
The team has an 11-3 record heading into their first ACC series beginning tonight at 7:00 at home against North Carolina State. The Hurricanes picked up their second win all-time against a MLB team on Wednesday against the Florida Marlins in Jupiter winning 9-7 and was their first victory in 23 years. Ryan Braun hit two homeruns last weekend giving him six on the season and is on pace for 23 this year. Jon Jay leads the team in batting average hitting at an astounding .538 clip. He is 28-for-52 on the season. Freshmen Alex Garabedian and Walter Diaz are beginning to find their swing and are more comfortable at the plate. Both players hit their first homeruns as Hurricanes last weekend and are now batting .235 and .233 respectively after a slow start.

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

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