2006 Spring Preview: Offense

The University of Miami football team begins spring practice on Tuesday, March 21. Here is a look at the offense and three key players to watch.

TOP OFFENSIVE RETURNERS
Offensive Coordinator: Rich Olson

Quarterbacks
Coach: Todd Berry

Kyle Wright, JR // 2,403 yards, 18 TD, 10 INT
Kirby Freeman, SO // 183 yards, 2 TD, 2 INT

Wright returns after a productive season a year ago. He will look to improve on his consistency under Olsen and develop a deep threat game. He has the arm strength to get the ball down the field, but must throw the ball with better accuracy for his threats to get the ball.

Freeman will be the back-up Wright and put together a pretty good spring a year ago. The former prep star in Texas will look to improve on his accuracy and has great speed in the open field.

Running Backs
Coach: Rich Olsen

Tyrone Moss, SR // 701 yards, 12 TD, 5.1 avg
Charlie Jones, JR // 507, 5 TD, 4.1 avg
Derron Thomas, SO // 150 yards, 3.2 avg
Andrew Johnson, JR // 97 yards, 6.9 avg
James Bryant, JR // 8 yards

Moss is not expected to go through heavy workouts in the spring which leaves the trio of Jones-Thomas-Johnson to battle for carries. Although Jones started at the end of the season a year ago, don't count out Thomas, who was the top spring performer a year ago, and Johnson, who is a threat to go the distance on every carry.

Bryant will assume the fullback duties and continue to provide energy to the offense while improving on his pass-catching skills.

Wide Receivers
Coach: Marquis Mosley

Ryan Moore, SR // 28 receptions, 464 yards, 4 TD
Darnell Jenkins, SR // 25 receptions, 242 yards, 2 TD
Lance Leggett, JR // 15 receptions, 204 yards, 2 TD
Khalil Jones, SO // 2 receptions, 30 yards

Moore (6-3)and Leggett (6-4) are very talented and provide a lot of match-up problems with their hength. Both players enter the spring with plenty to prove this year and should come in excited to be in the new offense.

Jenkins enters his senior season with 49 career receptions, 492 yards, and four touchdowns with a yards per catch of 10.0. There is no reason Jenkins should not be utilized downfield with this speed and big play ability and look for him to get his ypc closer to the 15 mark in 2006.

Tight Ends
Coach: Joe Pannunzio

Greg Olsen, JR // 31 catches, 451 yards, 4 TD
Chris Zellner, SO // 1 catch, 9 yards, 1 TD
DajLeon Farr, SO // 1 catch, 14 yards

Olsen is the only one of the group expected to be an offensive weapon with the other two primarily in blocking packages in a 2-tight end set.

Olsen had a productive year as a sophomore, but will look to improve on his overall consistency as a player. He has good hands and will have his work cut out for him going up against a talented defense in the spring.

Offensive Line
Coach: Mario Cristobal

Anthony Wollschlager, SR // 12 starts at center
Andrew Bain, JR // 10 games, 1 start
Cyrim Wimbs, JR // 9 games
Reggie Youngblood, SO // 8 games
Tyrone Byrd, SO // 6 games
Derrick Morse, JR // 5 games
Alex Pou, SR // 5 games
Chris Rutledge, SO // 4 games
A.J. Trump, FR // redshirt

Wollschlager is the lone starter returning after having a surprisingly productive season. Last spring he was moved from center to tackle in favor of Byrd, but won the spot back in the fall.

Byrd, Youngblood, Wimbs, and Rutledge are expected to compete for the tackle positions with Byrd and Youngblood as the front-runners.

Bain and Morse are expected to start at guard with Pou and Trump looking to get into the mix.

TOP 3 OFFENSIVE PLAYERS TO WATCH

1. QB Kyle Wright, will be expected to adjust quickly in new system

2. WR Ryan Moore, final year to show everyone what he is capable of doing

3. WR Lance Leggett, wants to put 2005 behind him and it starts with a productive spring

SPRING GAME

The annual spring game is on April 15 at 10:00 a.m. at the Orange Bowl. Admission is free.

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

Canes Time Top Stories