Wright & Freeman on First Practice

Competition for the starting quarterback position officially began today with the first day of spring practices. Kyle Wright and Kirby Freeman are the only two scholarship quarterbacks on the roster.

Head coach Larry Coker said the quarterbacks played "pretty well" on their first day of practice and believes the talent is there.

"I'm not concerned about the position because of a lack of talent," Coker said. "I am concerned because of a lack of experience."

As expected Kyle Wright took the first snap under center with the first unit and the two players will rotate who works with the first unit. Tomorrow Kirby Freeman gets his time with the first unit.

Coker is excited about their athletic ability and what they bring to the table as quarterbacks.

"We haven't seen a quarterback like these guys here," Coker said. "Both are more mobile than Brock Berlin and Kenny Dorsey so it'll be exciting."

Offensive lineman Rashad Butler commented on the benefits of having a mobile quarterback.

"It's much better for a lineman because even when you get beat, he can make you look good," Butler said.

In today's practice both players made strong accurate throws. Wright appeared to look more comfortable at times as Freeman lost his touch in a few drills.

Wright is a 6-foot-5, 208-pound sophomore from Danville, Calif. and threw for 30 yards on 5-of-9 passing in 2004. Although he is inexperienced he is ready for the pressure at the position.

"Pressure at this position comes with the job," Wright said. "But I put more pressure on myself than anyone can put on me. I can't stand it when I make a bad throw or a bad read because I know that I know the system and should be making the right decision."

"You can't sit around and talk about earning trust from your teammates," Wright said. "You have to go out there and execute. You have to show them that you can move the ball up and down the field."

Wright changed his jersey number from 16 to number three in the off-season. He made the change because there hasn't been a great quarterback at Miami wear the number three jersey. Wright wore number seven in high school, but did not want it because Berlin had it last year.

Freeman is a 6-foot-3, 195-pound redshirt freshman from Brownwood, Tex. and redshirted in 2004 while leading the scout team.

"Having faced this defense last year on scout team prepares me for the spring," Freeman said. "I knew last year that if I made (defensive coordinator) Randy Shannon mad that day, then I did my job. I am real excited about going against our defense in the spring because I feel I can set them up well for the season opener against Florida State and the rest of the season."

Freeman felt today went well although he was a bit erratic at times.

"It went real good," Freeman said. "It was the first day, which was excited. We went out here as a team and just did what we could do. We got the best out of what we could today and I am looking forward to tomorrow."

Freeman had off-season shoulder surgery on his non-throwing arm after suffering the injury following the Virginia Tech game in December.

"It feels great and I feel 100 percent," Freeman said.

Junior wide receiver Ryan Moore noticed the two quarterbacks were excited on the first day of practices.

"They threw the ball well today," Moore said. "They had a lot of strength on their throws--I think they were pretty excited today."

Of course they were excited, they had plenty of reason to be. Both players look at this opportunity as a life-changing experience, which will help them acheive personal goals with football.

Freeman & Wright address the media after practice

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

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