Canes’ newcomers shine in first Fall scrimmage
Canes’ newcomers shine in first Fall scrimmage
May 22, 2024 10:52 PM

Manny Diaz and the Miami Hurricanes held their first scrimmage on Sunday night with no media or fans present. Afterwards, Diaz provided a lot of key notes, including some freshmen standouts that should excite Canes fans.

Stats and notes on Offense:

– Although it’s still too early to tell, it’s looking like Miami’s answers at QB have finally been answered and D’Eriq King is the savior. King connected on 15 of 26 passes for 178 yards and four touchdowns. “D’Eriq King, his ability to make plays…really, really ignited our offense and really got them going,” Diaz said.

– Don Chaney and Jaylan Knighton impressed and it’s looking they should find roles with Miami’s offense this season. Chaney had 11 carries for 57 yards with a touchdown while Knighton had 10 carries for 126 yards and a touchdown of his own. Diaz added that “they both have had a great camp, so it just made sense and they’d have a great night tonight. Both guys had explosive runs, Chaney had some good, hard runs on some short-yardage stuff and both of them had the ability when they got out in the open field to make things happen.”

– Onto the receivers. This could be junior TE Will Mallory’s breakout season as he led the way with four catches for 71 yards and one touchdown. Senior Mike Harley caught a couple of touchdowns and two of Miami’s freshman receivers in Michael Redding and Xavier Restrepo did some damage. Redding caught three passes for 41 yards and Restrepo caught two for 54 yards while adding a 70-yard touchdown run.

– Diaz added that he was impressed with the offense in terms of discipline. He felt offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee did a great job of preparing the offense while keeping the pre-snap and mid-play penalties limited.

Stats and notes on Defense:

– ICYMI, Miami’s top defensive end and projected first-round pick Gregory Rousseau recently announced that he would be foregoing the 2020 season in preparation for the draft. So does Miami have enough talent to replace him? Well, it sounds like the Canes are still in good hands. Jaelan Phillips, the junior UCLA transfer who sat out last season, was “relentless off the edge.” Along with noting that freshman Cam Williams was very impressive, Chantz Williams also put on a clinic with five tackles and two sacks. Overall, Diaz felt as if the ends created a lot of havoc and “they really did step up and play their part.”

– With Shaq Quarterman and Mike Pinckney no longer with the team, the competition at linebacker is “far from over.”. Diaz felt sophomore Sam Brooks (five tackles), redshirt freshman Avery Huff, and freshmen Corey Flagg (one sack) and Tirek-Austin Cave all left their mark with some big hits. Also notes that juniors Bradley Jennings and Waynmon Steed (five tackles) played well.

– Junior safety Gurvan Hall led all defenders with seven tackles and freshman cornerback Marcus Clarke added an interception.

What to Look for next

What I noticed was that there was no specific mention of the offensive line play, as that had been one of Miami’s shortcomings last season. It is a good sign that false starts were not mentioned as a problem.

Diaz did not mention anything from the defensive tackle position and although Miami’s defensive ends are the last worries for coaches right now, a lot will be expected out of upperclassmen Jon Ford and Nesta Silvera.

Keep it locked to Five Reasons Sports for all of your Miami Hurricanes coverage leading up to their September 10th season opener.

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