Practice Report: 9/21

CORAL GABLES, Fla. - The Hurricanes returned to practice after a day off yesterday.

The team practiced for two hours in shells beginning at 3:20 p.m. An interesting note about practice featured the offense in the orange jerseys as opposed to their typical white jerseys, which the defense wore today.

"I think we are right on schedule. We pushed pretty hard today and we will have a little bit lighter practice today, get rested up and get ready for a tough game against Colorado."

"This is an exciting game against Colorado. It is one of those games that is not a league game, but it is kind of a national game. They are a somewhat power from the Big XII. It should be an interesting matchup."

· With RB Tyrone Moss picking up the majority of the yards for the offense, Miami is starting to develop an indentity as a power team, which surprises Coker "a little bit". "With the teams we have played, it is hard to set the tone that you want," Coker said.

· Offensive coordinator Dan Werner decided to go with the unbalanced offensive line last game and it was successful. With the unbalanced line, Eric Winston moves over to the right side with Rashad Butler and TE Greg Olsen becomes the left tackle. It is something they have done over the past few years, but not to this extent. In the game against Clemson they used the unbalanced line four times in the first half and 24 times in the second half. It gives defenses trouble because they are not used to seeing it and they are typicall unsure of which players are eligible.

· SS Greg Threat took a lot of heat from the coaches against Clemson after a mental that allowed the quarterback to pick up a long gain on a run. The coaches made up their mind prior to the season on Threat despite leading the team in tackles last year with 136 and any mistake hurts his chances even more in hopes for regaining his position. It will be interesting to see his role for the rest of the season and despite the coaches decision to limit his role after the aforementioned play, Coker anticipates using him on Saturday.

· SS Lovon Ponder took advantage of the coaches decision to not play Threat after the mistake as he was inserted in. Ponder has quietly put together a solid fall despite a lot of talk surrounding the rest of his safety mates.

· DE Calais Campbell is the only player on the roster from Colorado. In fact, Campbell grew up a a big Colorado fan, but they did not offer him a scholarship until it was too late in the process. Campbell knows some of the guys on the team from his days at Denver South High School. One player on the the national level that Campbell played with at South is USC RB LenDale White, who is a year older that Campbell.

· WR Lance Leggett has just one catch on the season for minus-eight yards, however that doesn't mean Coker has given up on him. In fact, he believes Leggett has the makings of a number one receiver this season and was not very positive about the possibility of Ryan Moore being the number one guy this season. "I don't know who is going to be the number one guy, but the guy I could see is Lance Leggett." Rarely does Coker discount a player's success to the media like he did with Moore.

· DT Baraka Atkins is being worked back into the lineup and is expected to start Saturday after not getting a lot of reps last week against Clemson due to a sore knee.

· RB Andrew Johnson returned to practice Monday and did a nice job today. Coker anticipates him playing this year and although he does have a redshirt year, Coker is "not planning on that right now".

· Following a victory the coaching staff awards game MVP's on the offense, defense, and special teams. Last week's winners were: RB Tyrone Moss (offense), FS Kenny Phillips (defense), and WR Darnell Jenkins (special teams).

· The coaches also choose MVP's from the scout team and the winners were: DE Courtney Harris, OL A.J. Trump, OL Matt Pipho, OL Reggie Youngblood, and OL Dave Howell.

· LB Tavares Gooden practiced today on a limited basis and wants to play Saturday against Clemson. Coker is not so sure he will play. At this point he has to be considered questionable at best. "We'll see how he feels tomorrow," Coker said.

· OL Derrick Morse is still out with a fracured shoulder. He is expected to miss 2-4 more weeks after suffering the injury on August 11.

· FS Anthony Reddick, DT Teraz McCray, CB Glenn Sharpe, and CB Carlos Armour are not practicing and are still recovering from ACL injuries. All four will miss the 2005 season.

Thursday, September 22 at 3:20 p.m.

Christopher Stock is a Senior Writer & Assistant Editor with CanesTime and can be contacted by emailing him at

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