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Monday afternoon UM and Dolphins quick hits; Heat signs point guard

Some quick Canes hits  (Please see below for 1:30 p.m. updates with Heat and Dolphins notes):

### UM said Stephen Morris threw during UM’s light practice today -- he wasn't a full participant in practiced -- and Al Golden indicated he expects him to play Saturday against USF.

“He looks good,” Golden said, noting this is not as serious as the ankle issue that forced him to miss the end of last year’s North Carolina game. (Morris was able to start the next week.)

### The perception of Ryan Williams around the program has improved. Golden noted that he has improved by changing his mechanics and using his feet more to escape pressure. “He doesn’t have an arm [as strong as] Stephen’s, but that doesn’t preclude him from being a very good quarterback,” Golden said.

### People who have watched UM’s closed practices during training camp have said they’re impressed with how freshman quarterback Kevin Olsen threw the ball. But in some pointed remarks, Golden made clear Monday he expects more. A lot more.

“He has to improve the mental aspects,” Golden said. “He hasn't owned the process. He can't waste this year. He's got to get better. When we're not throwing, he's got to be throwing anyway... [and] watch how Steve and Ryan conduct themselves....”

In other words, don’t get too comfortable, kid, and think you don't have to work harder at this. Golden sent the message he clearly expects more. (Susan Miller Degnan will have more of Golden's comments on Olsen and the quarterbacks in a story to be posted later.)

### Malcolm Lewis, who has essentially fallen to sixth on UM’s receiver depth chart before Rashawn Scott was injured late in the opener, is close to the player he was before his gruesome ankle injury against Georgia Tech last season, Golden said.

“Is he 100? No,” Golden said. “Will he be this year? I don’t know yet. He was playing faster.”

### Defensive coordinator Mark D’Onofrio smiled when noting that freshman linebacker Jermaine Grace not only thanked him after Saturday’s blowout win for putting him in the game but also reminded him that he had six tackles.

### Artie Burns wasn’t able to seize a starting cornerback job (he was listed as a possible starter last week, but not on Sunday’s depth chart), and that’s not a surprise because he’s got quality older players ahead of him. But Burns remains firmly entrenched among UM's top four corners and coaches love the upside.

"He played over 30 plays and graded out pretty well," Golden said. "We have to get more production from him in pass breakups and tackles, things of that nature.”

### UM is pleased with tight end Beau Sandland’s emergence.

“He's gifted athletically, he has loose hips, soft hands,” Golden said. “The things we didn't know was how good he'd be with run after catch.”

### Game time for the Oct. 5 home game against Georgia Tech will be decided next Sunday.

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The Heat, looking to fill out a training camp roster, signed undrafted 6-2 rookie point guard Larry Drew III, who averaged 7.5 points and 7.3 assists and shot 44.6 percent for UCLA last season and 43.3 percent on threes. The son of the Milwaukee Bucks and former Atlanta Hawks coach, Drew impressed the Heat during workouts earlier this month.

Drew, who started his college career at North Carolina and then transferred, broke Pooh Richardson's UCLA single-season assists record last season and was named first-team All Pac-12.

The Heat has 13 players signed to guaranteed contracts and five to non-guaranteed deals (centers Jarvis Varnado and Justin Hamilton, forwards Michael Beasley and Eric Griffin, Drew). The Heat has told agents it might not keep the maximum 15 players, so it's highly questionable whether any of the fringe roster contenders will make it, Beasley notwithstanding.

The Heat can bring as many as 20 players to camp, with former FSU guard Von Wafer among those continuing to get a look during informal workouts with the Heat.

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A few Dolphins notes from Monday:

### Joe Philbin said he's "delighted" by Ryan Tannehill's progress. "It's great to see, no question about it." But he said Tannehill "has to do a better job with the football."

### What especially irked Philbin about Sunday's win was "too many missed tackles."

### The Dolphins have committed only two penalties in the past two games (both yesterday). Conversely, the Jets committed 20 penalties in their win against Buffalo on Sunday. Offensive coordinator Mike Sherman said Philbin deserves credit for the Dolphins' lack of penalties because he emphasizes that.

### What pleased Philbin with the running game is "we're not having as many negative yardage plays" as the opener against Cleveland.

### He blamed a scheme error and a running back (clearly Daniel Thomas) for two of the five sacks allowed. "We're averaging almost five sacks a game," Philbin said. "That's not acceptable."

Meanwhile, Sherman blamed himself for two of the five sacks.

### Sherman said Tannehill's game-winning TD pass to Dion Sims was a play they ran at Texas A&M when Sherman was the coach and Tannehill was the quarterback.

### Defensive coordinator Kevin Coyle said Dion Jordan played well in his 30 defensive snaps, including a key run stop (with Reshad Jones) near the goal-line.

### Coyle said he's eager to see what rookie cornerbacks Jamar Taylor and WIll Davis can do and believes they are close to contributing.

### Philbin said the fact that 75 percent of 3-0 teams have made the playoffs since 1990 is "meaningless." 

### NFL Network's Deion Sanders threw water on the Dolphins' start, noting their defensive rankings don't impress him. OK then.

 

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