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1 p.m. UM update; Kiper mock draft; Lazor philosophy; Oden reax; LeBron on state of team; New UM offers

1 p.m. update: Today was the first day coaches could speak with recruits in several weeks, and UM coach Al Golden and recruiting coordinator/receivers coach Brennan Carroll traveled across country to Chaminade High in West Hills, Cal., the school of quarterback Brad Kaaya, a UM oral commitment. UM is trying to stave off UCLA and Boise and hold on to Kaaya, rated the 10th-best quarterback in the country.

Chaminade coach Ed Croson said he expects Kaaya will sign with Miami but also said UCLA and Boise "have a shot at him." Kaaya met with Golden and Carroll for breakfast, and Kaaya reportedly is expected to visit Miami this weekend.

Also, Croson said Golden was scheduled to meet today with senior receiver Brayden Lenius, who's very close with Kaaya. Though he's rated only a two-star prospect by rivals.com, Croson said Lenius is much better than that.

"He's 6-5, has great hands, faster than you can imagine," Croson said. "He went up against the No. 1 rated cornerback in the country, Adoree' Jackson, and beat him deep and drew two holding penalties."

Would luring Croson help Miami's chances with Kaaya? Croson said yes. "That would be a good ploy," he said. "Make sure his buddy is happy."

But Croson emphasized that Lenius can "stand on his own" as a prospect. Lenius has drawn interest from UCLA, Minnesota, Washington State and others.

UM also is recruiting two other Chaminade players --- sophomore receiver Diamond Lee and junior defensive tackle Bar Milo.


Dolphins, Heat and Canes items late on a Wednesday night:

### Mock drafts this early should be taken with a grain of salt (or pepper). As Pro Football Talk’s Michael David Smith noted today, the player who was No. 2 in Mel Kiper’s mock draft last January (Damontre Moore) ended up being drafted 81st last April.

That said, for those curious, Kiper’s first mock draft has Miami using the 19th overall pick to select Alabama left tackle Cyrus Kouandjio, who struggled in the Sugar Bowl. “While he had inconsistencies at the position, he also has the physical tools of a potentially dominant NFL starter at left tackle,” Kiper said.

### The five players Kiper slotted before Kouandjio: FSU defensive tackle Tim Jernigan, Notre Dame defensive tackle Louis Nix, North Carolina tight end Eric Ebron, Alabama safety Ha Ha Clinton Dix and USC receiver Marqise Lee.

The five players Kiper has going after Kouandjio: Notre Dame offensive tackle Zack Martin, Louisville safety Calvin Pryor, FSU receiver Kelvin Benjamin, Notre Dame defensive end Stephon Tuitt and Michigan State cornerback Darqueze Dennard.... By the way, Kiper has Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel going first to Houston, and Louisville's Teddy Bridgewater eighth to Minnesota.... For a lot more on the draft, please see our post from Saturday night.

### Some insight on the new Dolphins offensive coordinator Bill Lazor’s approach as a coach, as shared with Philadelphia media in November:

“We really don’t focus on the stats. Ever,” said Lazor, a former standout quarterback at Cornell who earned praise for his work with Nick Foles as the Eagles’ quarterback coach this past season.

“We just focus on, ‘How did you play?’ We grade on accuracy, not on if it was a completion but if it was in exactly in the right spot. And when the guys in the room are doing it with you and they buy into it – ‘Yeah coach, I should do better than that’ -- you have a chance to keep getting better.

“We focus on: ‘Was the ball one foot in front of the numbers on a crossing route so we can catch it on the move? On a screen pass, was it right on the running back’s front shoulder pad, so he can catch it and turn it right up?”

Lazor, who said today he's excited to work with Ryan Tannehill, said in November: "What you want out of your quarterback is a guy who takes that [bad play], internalizes it, understands it, and that's a part of his
library on that play, and if it comes up again, [he's] not going to make that mistake again."

### NFL Network reported late tonight that the Dolphins have reached out to Vikings GM George Paton about their GM opening, but it's unclear if he will interview. (Pro Football Talk reported something similar earlier.) Paton previously worked for the Dolphins. Miami interviewed Detroit executive and former Broncos GM Brian Xanders on Wednesday.

###  Good to see Greg Oden have success in his first regular season game in four years, one month and a week. He finished with six points (including two dunks) and two rebounds in eight minutes of the Heat’s 114-97 loss at Washington. Miami outscored the Wizards by three points with Oden in the game.

Oden said his surgically repaired knees “felt good.”

Though he would loved to have played sooner, he said he was on board with the Heat’s approach of holding him out the first 2 1/2 months “This is the plan and it’s gotten me this far,” he said. "The big thing now is to have that connection with my teammates."

Erik Spoelstra wasn’t sure he would play Oden tonight, but “as soon as we went down 30, we might as well try to reward him for the work he’s put in. You see the size and activity. He’s a skilled player for somebody that big… We’ll have to see how he feels and responds. He’s been very studious. The next step in the plan is see how he feels [Thursday].”

Spoelstra said he started Oden in the second half so he wouldn’t get stiff.

### LeBron James’ take on Oden: “How do you keep getting a dunk in your first attempt? It happened in New Orleans in the preseason and it happened again tonight. He was very good for us. He has no pressure. Whatever he can give us, with his time on the floor, is a plus. He can block shots. He can clog the paint. He can catch and finish.”

### James, on the state of the Heat after Miami’s third straight loss: “Defensively, we’re just not very good right now. There’s no way we can give up 43 points in the first quarter. It just can’t happen. It’s more mental than anything. Don’t know if it’s mental fatigue or lack of focus. We have to figure this out. It’s a good test for us. We love adversity more than anything. The connection defensively is not there right now. I’m a little bit concerned but not that concerned.

“It looks like we’re mentally fatigued when we hit the floor. I don’t know why we love to do this,… where we’re not that good [for a stretch] and we just click. The say it’s the dog days, but you can’t let that seep into your locker-room. You can have these type of moments, but you have to stop it at some point. It seems like we’re just tired.”

### The Heat hadn’t lost three straight since January 2012, a span of 173 games…. Ray Allen remains in a prolonged slump, having missed 38 of his past 45 shots over the last seven games… Also disturbing: The Heat has nine losses against sub-.500 teams, compared with four all of last season…. The Heat felt one short of equaling the 1961 Celtics’ record for most consecutive division wins (23).

### Even with 28 oral commitments (seven of whom are early enrollees), UM has offered scholarships to a few players in recent days, including Cochran, Ga.-based two-star safety Tavon Ross (a soft Missouri oral commitment who also drew an offer from Georgia) and Tampa Jefferson High athlete Deiondre Porter, a USF oral commitment. Porter played quarterback this season and had a state-best 4683 yards and 53 touchdowns combined passing and rushing.

Ross is planning a visit here in two weeks. UM is trying to get Porter to visit.

UM also is making another push for Louisiana-based Malachi Dupre, the nation’s No. 1 ranked receiver, but luring him will be very difficult; dozens of school are after him.

Please check out the last post, if you haven't already, for an in-depth look at UM's oral commitments and early enrollees on offense.

### UM's offense unraveled down the stretch in a 63-53 loss to Florida State, which went on a 13-0 late run before Miami scored the game's final two points. Donnavan Kirk and Rion Brown each scored 21, but the rest of the team shot 4 for 31, with no other Canes player scoring more than four. UM falls to 9-7, 1-3... UM said 1706 students attended, which is a a Bank United Center record. Overall attendance was 7413.

### Twitter: @flasportsbuzz  


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Bring on the 2-Stars Golden.

Ron Zook Is The Worst Blogger In All of College Football

A 2 star safety when we already have Bush, Jenkins, Jamaal Carter, and now 4 star Kiy Hester in the mix? The only saving grace is that at least two SEC schools have offered him as well. Offering scholarships to guys that only get offers from the lower rung college teams is not a practice that we should make into a habit. That offer to that 2 star WR screams of desperation to keep Brad Kaaya from flipping to UCLA or USC.


Proud of the local UM fans supporting a B-ballers, especially this brand new team. Such support can only boost these guys confidence in the future.
Thanks Canes fans!!!!

The Rock

Golden s plan is to back up Miami s current players with 2 star depth eh?Wow.He really rolled up his sleeves and went for great talented players.He s actually embarrassed that he lost 3 or 4 EXCELLENT commits and now is doing some "hurry-up" damage control to plug the leaking dike.Golden s stock is plummeting and the entire country is watching.A top tier Coach he may never again attain to be.


U losers that bash golden have no freaking clue about what ur talking about. U r the reason our fan base gets bashed. Morons do remember he has upped our wins every yr he has been here. By the way u do remember we were under intense scrutiny and restrictions even though it wasn't brought down on us till the last 4 months. Blow it out ur ass and find another front running team like the criminoles and sit on them. Golden has done amazing things with the depth and talent that randy shannons garbage ass left us


For the uninitiated two stars means a player hasn't been fully evaluated yet. For instance Demetrius Jackson started out as a two star before he was evaluated, now a four star. Admitted some players remain a two star following evaluation but more often than not they haven't been evaluated yet. Just saying......

Powell's move had more to do with admissions ofc than Golden.
Nigel Bethel didn't like defensive scheme and wasn't baby sat to his liking so he goes to that power house of defense Texas Tech, lol!
Trevante Valentine was most likely an academic casualty based on certain courses lacking more than grades but nevertheless was/is being pushed hard by LSU. Not out of reach yet for Canes!

De-commits at many of the major schools so why all the knee jerk reaction. Just negative people, lack of understanding about the recruiting game and how it is played, trolls,

This is a very good class and still highly thought of by recruiting analysts all over the recruiting landscape.


Again for the uninitiated......Brayden Lenius is 6'5 214lbs and if you took time to watch film and find out about the kid instead of your usual knee jerk and uniformed outbursts, you will find out why he was offered.
To no one in particular.....

Demetrius Jackson was virtually unknown when he was offered and became a two star when Miami offered. I believe that is correct so hold the negative when you for the most part don't have a clue!


Gators now showing interest in Alin Edouard a Syracuse commit and guess what now a four star by either 247 or Rivals, that I haven't found out yet but it is what it is? That's how it's done people! Whose interested, especially if it is the SEC and walla! Magical stars appear in the heavens and find their way to SEC recruits, lol!


Do you have any evidence that Powell and Valentine had any problems qualifying academically for UM or are you just saying things to say them?

Reality Bites

Seems like Lazor is a good get for the Fins. Let's hope it translates into improved play by T Hill next season.

Good to see Oden get some PT, need to have him ready to go for the playoffs. Getting rid of Anthony must mean that Oden is coming along just fine. What a great organization the Heat is. And thank God for that, the only Miami team worth a dang. Go Heat!

Golden recruiting 2 star kids? Give him a break, he needs to get what he can. Kaaya will go to UCLA, expect it so U won't be too let down later.

Then we have FSU filling yet another cane venue again. These FSU fans sure do support their teams both in football and round ball. Poor sorry cane round ballers need all the help they can get generating a crowd now that things are back to normal for them. I'm sure Duke and Cuse fans will help fill your sorry arena when they come visit but for the rest of the time it will be crickets as usual.
"NIT or bust and if we are lucky to make it can we at least survive to the second round." The new cane basketball motto.

Go Heat!

Not our rival

No one cares what you think about any Miami sports you miserable troll.

Ouch Reality

FSU is a much larger school with a far larger alumni base, plus the FSU fans that live in Tallahassee have nothing else in Tallahassee to do with their leisure time than attend FSU games.


Why is that stars make up a players attributes with most of you. Stars don't mean crap look at Santrel Henderson and others that really didn't make a impact. Malcom lewis was a 3 star wr, before his injury he was a 5 star impact. A players is no good because he does not have 5 stars next to his name. 1 star florida players well exceed the multitude of players that have 5 stars across the country. Why because talent is plentiful in florida and everyone can't shine in the same area at the same time. FSU rb Freeman was over looked because of his size so was Warrick Dunn but look at there play. Look at Reshawn Scott before he started cutting up, Herb Waters for that matter neither one was five star. Miami needs Db help badly, were are short, but that does not mean these guys won't produce. As fans you guys suck support the guys that are and those that are coming. The only time must of you have something positive to say is when the team gives you something to brag about, the Florida win and the 7-0 start. Be true fans and quit crying. These players have been beat down by the media, others schools and there staff and much worst you has fake fans. These kids read all of this stuff as long as theres and internet the will see it. Give them something to play for other than ungrateful fans living in the past help them create their own legacy, the U that brought Miami back to the top.

Reality Bites

Posted by: Ouch Reality

Reading comprehension anyone?
The venue that was referred to is in Miami, that would be the home of sorry cane basketball. Nothing to do with folks who live in Tally. Everything to do with losers who live in Miami though, like those who were mocked on national TV for leaving early a Heat playoff game, but more specifically those who claim to be cane "fans". You know the ones, fairweather bandwagon types.

Posted by: Not our rival

If you don't care why do you always respond?

Not our rival

Notice I never respond about whatever nonsense you're spewing about UM, just pointing you that you, personally, are a miserable internet troll.


If I lived in Indianapolis or Gainesville sure, I would go to every stupid game and stay until the end because there nothing else to do but sit around the trailer.


Envious people will call us losers but we know better.

Imagine living in a city where I consider everyone else a loser, what a loser I would be.

That's How It's Done

U lose 4-5 Star commits and U replace them with Unranked and 2-Star Duds.

GATORS lose 4-5 Star commiits and replace them with 4-5 Star Studs.

This is how it's done ... It's Called CLOSING, which U won't do.

Florida Gators coach Will Muschamp has flipped an ESPN 300 commitment for the third time in the past week.

Another Florida recruiting win

By flipping Thomas Holley from Penn State, Florida gains a stout defensive tackle while showing that a disappointing season hasn't carried over into recruiting.

The No. 51 prospect in the country, defensive tackle Thomas Holley (Brooklyn, N.Y./Lincoln), switched his commitment Wednesday from Penn State to Florida.

Last week, five-star cornerback Jalen Tabor (Washington, D.C./Friendship Academy) and four-star running back Brandon Powell (Deerfield Beach, Fla./Deerfield Beach) flipped their commitments from Arizona and Miami, respectively, to the Gators.

After Bill O'Brien left Penn State to become coach of the Houston Texans, Holley reconsidered his decision.

"I think it was just kind of hard for me to build a relationship with a coaching staff in two weeks, when I had spent 10 months building a relationship with the previous coaching staff," Holley said. "It really came down to the why between Penn State and Florida. At Florida, I already had a great relationship with the coaching staff, so it made it an easier decision."


And there isn't ONE Top-300 uncommitted kids even considring U.

Not ONE.

So it's more 2 stars for U and exactly why U have ZERO talented depth.


U losers that bash golden have no freaking clue about what ur talking about. U r the reason our fan base gets bashed. Morons do remember he has upped our wins every yr he has been here. By the way u do remember we were under intense scrutiny and restrictions even though it wasn't brought down on us till the last 4 months. Blow it out ur ass and find another front running team like the criminoles and sit on them. Golden has done amazing things with the depth and talent that randy shannons garbage ass left us

Posted by: Larry | 01/16/2014 at 10:04 AM
Ha Ha @ getting mad for bashing, then turn around a bash a former player/coach.. Too funny!

Folks, stop worrying about the stars next to the name. Geesh!


Why are the low life gaytors afraid to play UM? Just like their miserable "fans" they are nothing but mouth.

Not our rival

Posted by: That's How It's Done | 01/16/2014 at 01:38 PM

Why do you care enough about UM to troll their fans on the internet? We don't play you anymore, you're not our rivals and we're not yours.

The Rock

Larry: Too funny YOU of all people bashing Canes who don t care for Golden being rigid and unimiginative by sticking with his loser DC.Like who died and made YOUR opinion the only valid one on this blog.Hilarious.Then you bash Shannon and fans.You re such a hypocrite.


sure U are ... Come Beisbol Season the GATORS will be going for 17 out of the last 18 after kicking Ur AZZZEZ 14 of the last 15. Basketball, well Ur team sucks, but it would be great to smoke U for an 8th. straight time if U happened to join the March Madness Dance by luck. Futbol, Tennis, Golf, Swimming/Diving and any other sport U compete in, ALL BEATDOWNS for U.

Come to think of it, Ur right, we're not Rivals. One team needs to win more than a handful of games out of over 20 in order for it to be a Rival.

Not our rival

Yea, you're obviously not a real Gators fan, just trying to set up UM fans to talk to you on the internet.


#1 SEC  ... and u are still u

247Sports Composite 2014 Top 50 Recruit Commits:
SEC (23)
ACC (8)
B1G (4)
Big 12 (3)
Pac-12 (1)
Undecided (11)

And 8 of the undecided 11 are down to just SEC Schools. And U will get NONE. But there are plenty of unranked 2-Stars that Golden will be handing out schollies to like raffle tickets that will start and be Ur 2-3 deep Depth.

2013 NFL Draft Picks:
SEC: 63
ACC: 31
Pac-12: 28
Big 12: 22
B1G: 22

2 X's as many.

Bowl record, last 5 seasons:
SEC (30-18)
AAC/BE (16-11)
Big 12 (20-19)
Pac-12 (16-19)
ACC (18-23)
Big 10 (15-24)

Yeah, the SEC is "over-rated". Facts are facts. Simply the BEST.

T.H.E. S.E.C.


I hope the SEC is paying you a nice hourly wage. You seem to be an employee.. If not, damn your life sucks! Lol

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