Jamal is the kinda kid, he's a very coachable young man. He's one of those guys, you better tell him how you want it done the first time. He's a high effort guy, will give it everything he's got. He's been studying a lot of film. I'm real happy with his progress. It's a little ahead of what I thought it'd be because redshirting and being on the scout team all year gets you behind a little bit in terms of being sound in your technique and assignments. He's done a great job preparing himself for spring ball, studying film. He's been doing a great job on the field.
On Jamal saying he had a big head:
If Jamal had a big head, he kept it to himself. When he's around us, he's one of the most mild mannered guys you'll ever wanna see. He probably had an internal big head, like most freshmen do. They think they will come in and be the man. They were superstars in high school and they get to college and think they should start but it's all a process.
On Jamal's big hit Wednesday:
I hope he doesn't try to get the big hit award because he needs to add weight for that. He's a good open field tackler and one thing Jamal does is he brings a lot of athleticism to the safety position becahse he ran run, he's fluid, very athletic, can match up man to man with receivers. Every player has a weakness and his right now is he's gotta prove he can tackle. If you tell him he has weakness, Jamal is gonna go work on it. I wanna see his tackling improve but I don't wanna see him going head on with Mike James too many times because he probably won't win too many of those battles.
On the competition at safety:
The competition at every position is wide open and safety is no exception. The one thing we have at Miami is we have quality depth at positions. Like I told guys in a meeting the other day, you make a mistake and you'll end up on the second team, you may never get back on the field. It's definitely wide open. We're a long ways away from kicking off and they gotta do things right on and off the field before they prove to us they can help us win a ball game.
On Demarcus Van Dyke:
It's amazing the difference between a ball player when he's 16 to when he's 18, when he's a freshman to a junior. DVD going into his senior year, I always tell him it's time to step up. He's accepted that challenge. Being a year older, it's really gonna help. He knows I have to lead by performance. He's really stepped it up. We're happy with his progress this spring.
On Vaughn Telemaque:
I think the biggest difference between Vaughn Telemaque now and last season is his whole attitude. You hate to use the term but he's evolved into learning the scheme and buying into what we're doing. He's like a different guy out there right now. He's not the same guy you have to coach every play. He now realizes when he makes mistakes. He's preparing to be a leader by example. He's vocal when necessary but he's a good football player.
On Ray Ray Armstrong:
He's getting better. The thing that's making all of them better is the competition around them. Talking about DVD getting better, Jamal Reid, Vaughn Telemaque, when they look over their shoulder and see the next guy getting better, they have no choice but to get better.
On where he can improve:
He's got a lot of room to improve. The biggest thing is being disciplined with their eyes and being in the right spot and not peaking at the quarterback. He can get better with his footwork and his speed. And keep in mind, this is spring ball. We haven't played against anybody yet. You like to see the progress but we wanna see him do it when the lights come on.
On Brandon McGee:
He's improved. The one thing he has to improve on now is he has to learn how to finish the play. He's always in great position, he's a great athlete, has tremendous speed. Now he has to learn how to finish at the top of the routes. You wanna see him put it together but I have to remind myself all the time that he's a true sophomore. As he gets older, he'll get better but I'm in the generation now where I want it instantly. I wanna see him finish the play and be at the top of the route when the play is over with.
On their position coach:
He's still a slappy. The biggest thing I try to do is be positive. I try to encourage them. I never try to leave the field. If I tear them down, I never leave the field with them torn down. I never want them walking away thinking that my coach was personal. I'm here to get you better. When you come on the field, tell me I'm ready to get better. I try to challenge them. A lot of them has the physical ability. My challenge is mental ability. I need it to match up. I'm constantly challenging them so hopefully it'll make them get better.