Freshmen Update

A number of freshmen are expected to contribute this season for the Hurricanes.

K Matt Bosher

Bosher is expected to handle the kicking duties the next four years, but with senior Jon Peattie as the kicker Bosher will likely redshirt this season.

TE Dedrick Epps

Epps is the most physically imposing freshman that started that arrived at UM this fall. He will most likely see playing time at receiver this year if he is not redshirted. Head coach Larry Coker is very high on Epps as a player.

OL Joel Figueroa

At 6-foot-5, 335-pounds, Figueroa is a huge prospect at guard for UM. Figueroa has taken reps with the second team at guard this fall camp. Like most freshman offensive linemen, Figueroa needs to perfect his technique.

OL Jason Fox

Fox has by far been the most impressive freshman offensive lineman during the fall camp. Coach Cristobal has said that Fox will line up at both tackle positions for UM and could soon be in the mix for significant playing time at right tackle. Fox will be a great tackle for UM by the time he leaves, but at 6-foot-6, 270-pounds, he needs to add bulk to his frame.

TE Richard Gordon

Because of injuries to Chris Zellner and DajLeon Farr, Gordon received a lot of reps as the number two tight end during the spring. But, with Zellner and Farr healthy Gordon appears to have fallen down the depth chart. It appears that Gordon has not progressed as one would expect since the spring. However, Gordon is too good of an athlete to keep off the field and should see playing time at some point this season.

CB Chavez Grant

Grant has proven to be the most polished defensive back in the 2006 recruiting class. Coker has said Grant will see significant playing time this season in the nickel and dime packages.

WR/CB Ryan Hill

Hill was recently moved from cornerback to receiver, where he will bolster a unit in need of depth. During his second practice at receiver, Hill turned a short slant pass into a 48-yard touchdown. Hill will most likely be the fifth receiver on the offense and Coker said he will definitely play this season.

DT Josh Holmes

Holmes will likely redshirt this season and be in the mix for playing time in 2007. He has good size and has done some positive things in practice this fall.

RB Javarris James

James has impressed the coaches enough to receive significant reps in practice. James has great vision and feel for the game for a player his age. James will no doubt see game action at some point of the season.

CB Tervaris Johnson

At 6-foot-2, 220-pounds Johnson is playing cornerback in a safety's body. The coaches at UM always try freshmen defensive backs at corner first; if they succeed the coaches know the player can play safety or corner. Johnson must be impressing coaches at corner, because he is still working at the position. During the open practice on August 22, Johnson had a nice pass breakup on a deep ball thrown to Darnell Jenkins.

LB Colin McCarthy

McCarthy is working as the second-team strong-side linebacker. He has impressed the coaches with his ability to digest and pick up the defensive scheme. McCarthy could see time this season on special teams.

WR George Robinson

The receiver from Miami Central has the speed to be a good receiver for UM, but he must perfect his route-running ability. Robinson played in a ball-control offense that ran the ball in high school, so he is very raw. Robinson will be redshirted this season. The coaches must feel Robinson needs to learn the finer things of the position, because they switched Hill to receiver.

RB Kylan Robinson

Robinson has all the physical tools to be a successful running back, but he is very raw. Robinson has been playing running back for only a year now. Barring any injuries, Robinson will probably be redshirted this year.

WR Sam Shields

Shields has without a doubt been the most impressive freshman this fall. Shields has blazing speed, reportedly running a 4.32 40-yards in the summer. Shields has slowly made his way up the depth chart. Don't be surprised if he starts a few games for UM this season. Shields may also return kickoffs this season.

OL Ian Symonette

The giant 6-foot-9, 340-pounds tackle will be sidelined for at least the next four weeks due to a knee procedure. Symonette had screws placed in his knee after a surgery in high school and he had those screws removed after they caused some irritation. Cristobal has said that all of the freshman offensive linemen could play this season, but for Symonette that could depend on how fast he can recover.

DT Chaz Washington

Washington is the furthest along of any of the freshman defensive linemen. At 6-foot-4, 305-pounds, Washington has the prototypical size to be a successful defensive tackle for UM in the years to come. Washington will likely be redshirted this season.

DE Steven Wesley

Wesley will likely be redshirted this season and be an important factor on the scout team. Wesley has good size at the end position and will learn a lot from defensive line coaches John Palermo and Clint Hurtt.

David Lake can be reached at lake@canestime.com

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