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UM names A.D.; UM starter on suspension; UM roster shuffling; Barkley on Heat; Fins, Marlins chatter

Quick Friday morning update: The interim title has been removed, and Blake James is now UM's permanent athletic director. He has impressed president Donna Shalala with his handling of several matters since Shawn Eichorst left for Nebraska in September.

FRIDAY BUZZ COLUMN

Beyond adding 16 players on National Signing Day, a few other roster moves are playing out at UM, with one key player suspended and three changing positions.

Linebacker Eddie Johnson is “suspended indefinitely” for an accumulation of undisclosed issues, coach Al Golden told me. Asked if he would play for the team in 2013, Golden said he is “hopeful” but preferred not to discuss it further.

Johnson needs to starting behaving maturely, because UM needs his speed and skill set, especially after parting ways with Gionni Paul and losing senior Ramon Buchanan.

Johnson – who was fourth on UM’s defense with 59 tackles, including a team-high 7.5 for loss, plus three forced fumbles -- was left home for the Virginia and Duke games last November for violating team rules, prompting Golden to say at the time: “I’m disappointed he’s not doing the things he needs to do.” Tardiness was believed to be an issue.

Defensive coordinator Mark D’Onofrio, asked in general about players who had missteps, said: “We can’t have immaturity. We can’t have guys going into their second and third year not acting and not playing like veterans.”

If Johnson gets his act together, he presumably would continue to start along with linebackers Denzel Perryman and Jimmy Gaines. But D’Onofrio also is excited about Raphael Kirby and believes Devante Bond, who had 17 sacks in junior college last season, is ready to play.  

Tyrone Cornelius, Gabe Terry, freshman Jermaine Grace and others offer depth.

Meanwhile, Golden told me three players are changing positions: Tight ends Dyron Dye and David Perry have moved to defensive end, an area that needed depth. And defensive end Jake O’Donnell, who redshirted, is shifting to tight end.

Dye, a former defensive end, started eight games at tight end in 2012, but the Canes believe they have enough at the position, led by Clive Walford (234 receiving yards in UM’s final two games), Asante Cleveland and two newcomers -- Beau Sandland (the No. 1 rated junior college tight end) and Standish Dobard.

### As for other possible roster moves, Golden told WQAM's Joe Rose on Thursday: "There could be a JC kid still available. There could be a transfer or two."

### Here were some signing day comparisons made by UM coaches: Mario Cristobal compared Sandland to Jeremy Shockey; Micheal Barrow called Grace “a combination of Sean Spence and Denzel Perryman” and running backs coach Terry Richardson (who left for the same job with the Jacksonville Jaguars) likened running back Augustus Edwards to Eddie George.

### Oakland Park Northeast's Donnell Bennett, the former Canes running back, is a possibility to replace Richardson, and Canesport.com reported Miami Central coach Telly Lockette also is a candidate, with both interviewing Friday.

### UM was surprised it didn’t get FSU-bound linebacker Matthew Thomas; some assistants were left with the impression he would pick Miami. Meanwhile, receivers coach Brennan Carroll revealed that UM-bound Stacy Coley told UM at one point that he expected to attend FSU. “Terry Richardson and Al Golden flipped the kid!” Carroll said.

### Former UM offensive line coach Jeff Stoutland left Alabama to join Chip Kelly's Philadelphia Eagles staff as o-line coach.

### Whereas Brandon McGee and Mike James on Thursday were invited to the NFL Combine in two weeks, former Cane Ray-Ray Armstrong - once billed as potential first-round pick by ESPN - was not even invited. Armstrong did not play this past season but his father said he's working with one of Tom Brady's former trainers. Two FIU players were invited to the Combine -- Jonathan Cyprien and Tourek Williams.

 

CHATTER

### TNT’s Charles Barkley said on a conference call Thursday that simply adding Chris Andersen won’t be enough for the Heat. “They need another big guy to repeat,” Barkley insisted. “They need a big guy for this year but also the future. What LeBron James is able to do on a nightly basis to cover up all their flaws is remarkable.”

But the Heat wants to get an extended look at Andersen, who has impressed, before deciding whether it needs any more help. “They’re a very small team and it’s too difficult to win multiple championships when you can’t out rebound teams,” TNT’s Kenny Smith said.

### As much as Reggie Bush would love to stay with the Dolphins, they still hadn’t made him an offer as of midweek…. Impending free agent Chris Clemons said if the Dolphins keep him and 2014 free agent Reshad Jones together longterm --- and Miami wants to keep both -- "we can be the best safety tandem in the NFL." Among all NFL safeties, Clemons allowed the lowest percentage of passes in his coverage area to be completed for first downs or touchdowns, according to ProFootballFocus. Jones was fifth.... Among 57 big cities, only Los Angeles had a worse TV rating for the Super Bowl than Miami-Fort Lauderdale.

### One upshot of the Marlins’ depressing offseason: “Our minor league system is a lot better than it was a year ago,” executive Larry Beinfest said, with the Marlins placing six players among MLB.com’s top 100 prospects: pitchers Jose Fernandez (7), Justin Nicolino (72) and Andrew Heaney (82), outfielders Christian Yelich (13) and Jake Marisnick (70) and shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria (82), the only one of the six expected to open the season in the majors.

Beinfest said the Marlins’ minor league system “was a little unfairly criticized” before the Toronto trade, which netted Nicolino, Marisnick and Hechavarria, among others: “We have players that maybe don’t get the love some other players get, like [outfielder] Marcell Ozuna, who led the Florida State League in home runs.”

And Beinfest said Double A prospect Derek Dietrich, acquired from Tampa for Yunel Escobar, “could be our future third baseman. We love him.”

 

Comments

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Steve B

Good work Barry your reporting has been timely and thorough lately.

Nick

the canes are going to have to outscore people next year. get ready for a lot of shootouts.

Pan con deer antler

I hope Eddie Johnson gets his act together. He could arguably be our best player on D

Clue

Sources told me Johnson was suspended because Michael Barrow snitch to AL Golden about Johnson smoking weed. Johnson then went up to Barrow after practice wanting to fist fight Barrow. This is a true story

Jo jo

Eddie Johnson s Miami football career is looking more and more bleak.The kid is just not stable.No good past Canes demonstrated an inability to remain disciplined.I see him as being pretty much done/finished with his football career as he seems incapable of controlling his demons.Too bad for him and the Canes.

lifetimeCane

call me a dreamer but i think Canes are going to be much better D next season . With the playing time the baby Canes got this year & another year with Swasey were gonna
be stouter than many think ! just saying .

lifetimeCane

D Bush is a beast & reminds me of a young S Taylor !

Clue

D Bush wishes he can walk in S Taylor shoes.

Cane11

I too hope Johnson gets his act together, but it sounds like he is an I person, and there is no room for an I person on the Hurricanes TEAM, which does not have an I in it's spelling.
I think Donnell Bennett wouls be a good replacement at running backs coach, he's been there and done that and he has been developing talent at the high school level.

UMike

Why print what Charles (ASS CLOWN)Barkley has to say?

He's been blasting the Heat for years now.

He's a drunken slob who hated white people, plain and simple.

F**K BARKLEY!

Canester-Nip

Barkley was married to a white woman assclown!!!

rbleigh

Clue, Johnson is lucky he didn't! Barrow is a man and would have kicked his @s$

jim

Barkley being married to a white woman doesn't mean that he can't be a racist. That's just ignorant. That's like a white person saying that they're not racist because they have minority friends. Barkley has made questionable remarks in the past that gives some the impression that he could be a bit prejudice. One of my parents neighbors was married to a white woman and he tried to weasel his way out of getting arrested for domestic violence when he beat her face to a pulp by telling the black officer who responded to the call that "she's not one of us" and that "she's not worth the air that we breathe". This was the guys own "wife" that he was talking about. He gave off the impression that he thought he was better than her because she wasn't black like him. That's almost the definition of racism. Was he saying that because he meant it or did he say it because he was desperate and didn't want to go to jail? Who knows for sure but his remarks don't give him the benefit of the doubt.

jim

BTW, Barrow would have kicked his ( )*( ) but I doubt that story is true. Michael Barrow is his coach, not his friend who's going to be hanging with him in his dorm watching him smoke weed.

sflafan

Eddie Johnson. You might have a bright future. DON'T BLOW IT. Grow up young man. The U can use him. He's a good player.

LifetimeCane correctly said that Deon Bush "reminded him" of Sean Taylor. He specifically said "reminded him". He did not say he's better than Taylor. There will always be only 1 Sean Taylor. Would have been a Hall of Famer. But for "CLUE" to come and say something idiotic like "Bush can't walk in Taylors shoes" was unnecessary. Ok, we get it... nobody can. Sean was special. But don't demean Bush with that uncalled for comment. The truth is that as a TRUE FRESHMAN playing a very difficult safety position, Deon Bush showed that he is a stud, and has all the skills Sean Taylor had. Will he be as good? Will he be an All American? I think he at least has a chance!

Charles Barkley will NEVER relent in his criticism of the Heat. They can win 3 in a row, and he'll still say they stink and can't repeat. It's personal to him. He doesn't like this town or its people, and he has developed a grudge against D Wade. Apparently, they had some sort of falling out after the commercials they did together. Barkley is a caricature. A goofball with little intellect and little credibility. He's just fun to watch because of his idiotic and comical ways. His "insight" into the game is very poor for a Hall of Famer. He could obviously play the game, but he can't think it.

UMike

Canester-Nip: Do your homework before you comment, ASS BREATH...below is a clip from an article in Sports Illustrated about how Charles Barkley gets away with saying things that others would never get away with:


"part of the reason Barkley gets away with outrageous statements and acts -- like the time he responded to a reporter's question by saying, "This is why I hate white people";

Read More: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2008/writers/phil_taylor/05/27/barkley/index.html##ixzz2KKbjMeG9

I don't print BULLSH*T...If I print it, it was SAID and is REAL....you're an embarrassment to Canes fans and knowledgeable sports fans everywhere!

What do you have to say about yourself now, MR. SMART ASS?

Boowalley

Don Solinger should at least get a interview as the running backs coach. All he did was churn out 1st rd. running backs year after year.

Marios

Agree this blog is above anything Barkley has to say.
Also agree Eddie Johnson is a beast of a LB.
And yes, we should find a spot for Soldinger in the U, if not RB coach maybe something made up like we did with Cristobal and "Ice"(or ass) Harris.

Rc

Don is no longer part of our family.

Rc

Charles is a good dude and not anyway racist. Known him for ten years.

UMike

Really, Barkley is a good dude?

The got drunk in Orlando once and threw a guy threw a plate glass window...he's stated that he "hates white people" (IF that were reversed OMG the ramifications would be ENDLESS)...

Rc, maybe you know him and think he's a good dude...based on what I've seen and heard, he's an idiot, but then I don't know him personally, nor do I care to.

Omaximus

What's the over/under on how long this AD sticks around? A few more months working under the 'leadership' of Donna Shalala and I bet Blake James runs for the exits as quickly as the last two. Perhaps he will get 'homesick' like Holcutt..

TK SWAN!!

HEY LET'S PRAY JOHNSON GET'S IT TOGETHER AND IF ANYONE KNOWS HOW WE(CANE FANS) CAN HELP HIM LET'S DO SO HE IS A YOUNG IMMATURE MAN WHICH WE ALL HAVE BEEN AT ONE TIME(EXCEPT FOR OUR FEMALE CANE FANS)WE WANT HIM TO DO WELL ON THE FIELD AND OFF. I THINK HE HAS ALL ACC TALENT AND WITH A GREAT YEAR ALL-AMERICAN POTENTIAL. AS FAR AS CHARLES BARKLEY GOES! F...! HIM AND I DO THINK HE IS RACIST AND I'M BLACK. HE HATES THE HEAT AND I CANNOT STAND HIM! F.....T CHARLES BARKLEY!!!!

rboud

You have to hope the light comes on for E. Johnson because he has a world of talent. Sometimes these kids just stay in the dark. He has a chance to play in the NFL, but he's the one who has to make it happen,

Lt. Lois Einhorn

Both the ADs Shalala hired after Paul Dee left for Athletic Director jobs at bigger universities in their hometowns.

First one made a phenomenal and unpopular decision in hiring Al Golden.

Second made a phenomenal and unpopular decision in hiring Larranga.

Blake James will be every bit as good as Kirby Hocutt and Shawn Eichorst, if he winds up leaving for another AD job at a bigger university Miami will have no shortage of competent candidates to replace him.

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