Randy Shannon Q&A

Miami returns nine starters on defense for 2005 including leading tackler Greg Threat who was the first safety to lead the team in tackles with 136, in over 20 years. The defense also returns Kelly Jennings, Orien Harris, Thomas Carroll, Baraka Atkins, Anthony Reddick, and Devin Hester.

Randy Shannon has been the defensive coordinator at Miami for the past four seasons including the 2001 National Championship team.


Scoring Defense - 13th in the nation (17.00) - 3rd ACC

Total Defense - 28th in the nation (328.08) - 8th ACC

Rushing Defense - 67th in the nation (155.00) - 8th ACC

Pass Defense - 9th in the nation (173.08) - 4th ACC

Pass Efficiency Defense - 18th in the nation (107.55) - 6th ACC

This spring the defense has been very productive in stopping the run and pressuring the quarterback in passing situations. The defensive line has been relentless and guys are making big plays.

The top seven guys in the secondary have recorded interceptions this spring. The linebackers are improving particularly against the pass. The middle of the field against the pass still remains a weakness for the defense.


What are your thoughts on the performance of the defense so far this spring?

We still have to work on some things that we need to fix from last year. We are getting better at it. My thing is that we have to keep the pressure on them and not get relaxed. On Saturday we gave up three big plays. We had a good scrimmage, but two or three plays can cost you in a game. Last year we would be playing well, but then we would go into a sleep mode. That is something we have to work on this spring.

Are you concerned with the big plays the defense has given up this spring?

We have some weapons on offense. Don't think that we don't. We recruited those guys on offense so they have to be playmakers. They are making more plays than I think they should. Every day there will be some big plays. Some daysbigthey are going to have big plays and some days we will have big plays.

When the defense is dominating in practice, do you keep the pressure on the offense?

Every day in practice there is something I want us to work on. One day we might just play basic defense and be good at that for the day. Some days we might just work on blitzing. It won't work unless we keep working on it.

How is the secondary coming along?

Pretty good with the limited guys we have. We went from having 12 down to just seven. There are a lot of injuries that we are dealing with. But if the game was today, we would have to play with what we have.

Is there anyone in particular that has stepped up this spring?

The defensive front. They have done a good job of getting in a number of plays. If our defensive line can continue to put pressure on people then it makes everything else easier.

Practices resume today at 3 pm.

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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