« Wed. 6 p.m. Heat schedule update; Obstacles surface, but interest remains, in UM/MLS stadium; Fins, Marlins | Main | Muschamp visits S. Florida, addresses state of UF program; Dolphins announcer change; Heat, UM, Marlins »

8 p.m. Thursday update: UM in mix for big player; Mayock on Dolphins, draft; UM rejects offer; Heat

8 p.m. update:

UM, trying to find an experienced transfer with size, hosted 6-8 power forward TaShawn Thomas on Wednesday, as ESPN first reported. Thomas would be a huge get if he picks UM.

He averaged 15.4 points, 8.1 rebounds and 2.7 blocks last season and shot 59 percent from the field but just 59.5 percent from the line. Houston granted his release after a coaching change. He has one season of eligibility left.

He also plans to visit Oregon and Alabama.

UM is talented and deep at the wing positions but wants to add another big body, preferably one with college experience.

### UM will host Illinois on Dec. 2 in the ACC/Big 10 challenge. UM beat Illinois in the 2013 NCAA Tournament.

MAYOCK MUSINGS 

Snippets from NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock’s conference call today:

### On the Dolphins' first-round pick, he said there’s “no way in the world” Notre Dame offensive tackle Zack Martin “gets close to 19.”

Mayock said “the last first-round tackle I’ve got is Alabama’s Cyrus Kouandjio. I’ve got him later in my board. He’s the guy they probably have to take at 19. They’ve got to make over that offensive line, and he would be the highest guy left.”

And if not, what else would Mayock consider at 19?  “I think a receiver would pique my interest there. At that point, an Odell Beckham [LSU] or Brandin Cooks [Oregon State] you would have to look at those two players and say, 'Is he significantly more highly-rated than Kouandjio is?' And if so, you pull the trigger on a wideout.”

Two problems with Kouandjio: He reportedly has had issues with an arthritic knee condition. (He had a torn ACL and MCL in 2011.) And his play was uneven last season, including a poor performance in the Sugar Bowl.

NFL.com’s Nolan Nawrocki sums him up this way: “Inconsistent, overhyped left tackle whose sheer dimensions, raw tools and high ceiling are far more appealing than his snap-to-snap performance at this stage of his development.”

### Mayock said of the tackle class: "It's not as deep a tackle run as some people might have you believe. I have four guys in the [second/third round] and then there's a big drop: Joel Bitonio of Nevada, Morgan Moses of Virginia, Jack Mewhort from Ohio State and Ju'Wuan James from Tennessee, who I think is a starting right tackle. Those are the second day guys and then I think there's a significant dropoff."

The Dolphins have spent a lot of time with James and also like Bitonio.

"At first I didn’t like [Virginia’s] Morgan Moses because he’s got average feet," Mayock said. "But sometimes those long right tackles with average feet end up being pretty good players. He’s long, difficult to get around.

“I love Bitonio. Most teams assume he’s a guard. I watched him handle Anthony Barr of UCLA. I watched him against Florida State. I think he can start Day 1 at right tackle.”

Miami’s second round pick is 50th.

### Mayock said not only is Martin his No. 4 offensive tackle, but “he would be my No. 1 center or No. 1 guard. He will be the fourth offensive lineman off the board, somewhere between 9 and 13. He’s too good, too safe, and there are too many teams with offensive line needs. About as safe a player as there is in this draft.”

### On receivers: “Sammy Watkins and Mike Evans are my first two. Odell Beckham and Brandin Cooks the next two; they’ll be gone plus or minus 20. And Kelvin Benjamin and Marqise Lee come into play after that.”

### He said Clemson receiver Martavis Bryant’s “physical skill set is so awe-inspiring he’s probably going to go in round two. He has some maturity issues that have to be addressed.” The Dolphins brought in Bryant for a visit.

“Paul Richardson from Colorado; he flies. [LSU’s] Jarvis Landry is one of my favorite players in the draft; not [very] fast but one of toughest players in this draft, a value in the third round.”

Mississippi's Donte Moncrief, who visited the Dolphins, "drops the ball too much" but "teams that focus on West Coast offenses make the most sense for him." (The Dolphins will have some West Coast elements.) Mayock calls Moncrief a third- or fourth-rounder.

### Forget getting North Carolina tight end Eric Ebron at 19. Mayock expects him to be drafted between seventh and 13th.

### On Louisville and former Miami Northwestern star Teddy Bridgewater: “I’m struggling myself internally with Teddy Bridgewater, because I liked him on tape. Then I saw him throw live and I didn’t like it at all. I’ve talked to teams who are unnerved by that.

“Then I watched three or four more games, and it’s through a different prism of: I am questioning arm strength and accuracy. I saw him take three sacks consecutive against South Florida. He took three sacks I couldn’t stand. He’s a narrow-framed guy, didn’t think he was athletic. I don’t see an ‘it’ factor. I don’t know that he’s ready to be the guy. I’d be surprised if he goes in the first round.”

### Mayock has first-round grades on five cornerbacks: Virginia Tech’s Kyle Fuller, Michigan State’s Marqueeze Denard, Oklahoma State’s Justin Gilbert, Ohio State’s Bradley Roby and TCU’s Jason Verrett. “Verrett is special; the only knock is he’s 5-9.

### He has 10 quarterbacks with first, second and third-round grades --- his most ever. He has three first-rounders: Texas A&M’s Johnny Manziel, UCF’s Blake Bortles and Fresno State’s Derek Carr.

### Please see Susan Miller Degnan's UM blog for Mayock's comments on several UM players, including Seantrel Henderson (whom he considers a fourth rounder).

############################################################################################### 

### The Dolphins are spending the final week before the draft getting a final look at a few prospects that intrigue them.

According to a source, the Dolphins dispatched linebackers coach Mark Duffner to Louisville on Wednesday for a private workout with Preston Brown, a middle linebacker that has piqued their interest.

Brown was the Cardinals’ leading tackler for the second straight season, with 98 tackles (including 12 for loss), with a pass breakup, three forced fumbles and a 48-yard fumble return for a touchdown.

NFL.com's Nolan Nawrocki (author of NFL Draft: 2014 Preview) calls him a third- or fourth-round pick and said he has “outstanding size, physical tackler, good instincts, delivers some pop on contact and strikes with force. Good football intelligence – makes the calls and lines up a defense. Average coverage instincts. Struggles to match up with athletic tight ends in man coverage…. Aggressive, high-collision ‘Mike’ linebacker best paired with a demanding position coach who will extract the most from him.”

UM REJECTS SHOWTIME

UM has declined an offer from Showtime to appear on a reality show modeled after HBO’s Hard Knocks, a UM official told me earlier today.

As TheBigLead.com reported Wednesday, Showtime was prepared to air about 13 episodes, chronicling the UM football program, every step of the way, from August through the end of the season.

“We talked to the production company off and on for the last two years,” a UM official said. “It was not the right time for us.”

UM rejected the offer earlier in April.

The school said The Big Lead inaccurately reported that UM has issues with the project’s production crew. UM said that was not the case.

This was simply a case of UM not being comfortable, at least for this season, with granting Showtime incredible access to detail whatever it wished about the Hurricanes football program.

As The Big Lead accurately reported, Ray Lewis would have been a producer on the project. His son plays on the team.

 

HEAT

### With Houston staving off elimination against Portland tonight, nothing has changed regarding the Heat playoff schedule scenarios we reported Wednesday evening. Please see the last post for details.

### About 15 Heat employees, including Pat Riley and Erik Spoelstra and Bob McAdoo, are expected to travel to Naples on Thursday morning to attend Jack Ramsay’s funeral.

Former coaches already in Naples for the funeral include Matt Guokas and Jim Lynam. (So is Jim O’Brien, Ramsay’s son-in-law.) Update: Others in attendance included Billy Cunningham, Hubie Brown and ESPN's Mike Breen.

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

u are u ... same as the last 12 years u ...

UM rejected the offer earlier in April.

The school said The Big Lead inaccurately reported that UM has issues with the project’s production crew. UM said that was not the case.

This was simply a case of UM not being comfortable, at least for this season, with granting Showtime incredible access to detail whatever it wished about the Hurricanes football program.

Soldy

u f ' uckin cane fans are a trip


holla soon Arty

Tampa Cane

Sounds like the Gator fans are a little jealous that Showtime refused to send their cameras and crew to backwoods of North Florida.

 The Big Lead

When the UM higher ups saw a preliminary scrip of the show they promptly scrapped the deal.

SHOWTIME: Coach your defense has ranked at or near the bottom of the ACC for 3 years in a row now, in a league that is not known for playing good defense. What do you tell those that are concerned?
GOLDEN: Well, the most important thing we can do there is well, to not make any changes.
SHOWTIME: No changes? Then how can you hope to improve?
GOLDEN: Well, it is a process, you know, I have a 300 page manual to follow, I am confident we will get there.

and so it goes

Not our rival

Posted by: u are u ... same as the last 12 years u ... | 05/01/2014 at 03:09 AM

Hush nerd, no one cares about your fake internet rivalry. In real life Miami beat your team last year and we're not scheduled to play again. Go find an AOL chatroom if you want to troll strangers on the internet for no reason.

Penguin

"Showtime" should only be a word that's shouted at the start of a game.

ChestyPuller

21-16

CutlerRidge Laz

We didn't need the Showtime disaster as we plan on retaking the home advantage in college football without help from the media. #CanesFam on Showtime however would be award winning. I could show the world how this ex-con could slam my sofrito padron milkshakes in 95 degree heat without taking a breath while I call in 560QAM.

Not our rival

Posted by: u are u ... same as the last 12 years u ... | 05/01/2014 at 03:09 AM

Hush nerd, no one cares about your fake internet rivalry. In real life Miami beat your Gators in football and we're not scheduled to play again. Go find an AOL chatroom if you want to troll strangers on the internet for no reason.

que cosa?

I thought the milkshakes were a baseball thing

D-Rod

Barry,

Just thought I'd let you know that like in most cases, dining, traveling, etc., I always leave your article/blog for last when reading the Sports section if I see the Buzz is posted that day.

I grab a snack, and prepare myself to be thoroughly informed.

Johnny J

Cane program will always remain a TOP,competitive program.Of course we need not try to convince Gator lovers though because it s a well-known fact that the entire Country knows their Administration and Coaches fear to play our football team.THAT is cold-blooded REALITY.Too funny.

AnonymousCanes

Good decision!

Reality Bites

"

Cane program will always remain a TOP,competitive program"

TOP of what?

Top 25 AP, USA Today, BCS rankings???????
Not even close. Not even in the "others receiving votes" category.

Top of their conference?
Not ever have you won your conference. Ever.

Top of your division?
Nope, not once have you won our division. Not once have you sniffed the ACC ship game. Ever.

Top in your State?
In the past decade FSU, UF and even UCF have finished the season ranked way ahead of you and have had much better seasons than you.

Now johnny you used the word "remain", which leads me to believe you are stuck in the distant past. The canes used to be a top program in the 80s and 90s. Long time ago clown, used to be, has been, get with the 21rst century fool.
That is the cold blooded reality.
The bit about Gator coaches or administration fearing to play UM is not a "well known fact", it is pure speculation from clowns like you. Facts are what I listed above. Thing is you clowns have trouble recognizing what a fact is. Let me give you another example. Goldenfraud was afraid to play LSU to kick off the 2014 season at a neutral site. Gave some excuse about not wanting to break in a new QB against a top team. That is a fact.
Guess they don't teach you much at local high schools and at MDCC that all you adopted cane bandwaggoners have so much trouble recognizing facts and dealing with reality.
That is too funny............................. actually it is pathetic

Chip

21-16

La Verdad

Another CLUTCH post by Reality Bites.

Not our rival

Posted by: Reality Bites | 05/01/2014 at 12:24 PM

Hush nerd, no one cares about your fake internet rivalry. In real life Miami beat your Gators in football last year and we're not scheduled to play again. Go find an AOL chat room if you want to pathetically troll strangers on the internet for no reason.

Fact Check

Posted by: Not our rival

Can't handle the truth

Not our rival

Didn't read a word of it, UM fans have no reason to care about the Gators and vice versa. He's talking about a fake internet rivalry that solely exists among trolls on this website.

dunnelloncane

Reality bites needs a dose of reality. Uf has not left the state since 1991 to play a ranked out of conference team! In the last few years UM had gone to ND, Ohio State,Oklahoma and Kansas State, all in the top 5-10 at the time. This year UM's first 2 games are Louisville and at Nebraska.Uf first 2 are Eastern Ky and Kentucky at home. They play their usual 3 non-conference pansies. Of course since Ga. Southern beat them at home during last yrs. 4-8 season, gator fans are worried. UM owns Uf, winning 7 of 8 and 12 of 15. Uf is scared to play UM

Not our rival

Posted by: Fact Check | 05/01/2014 at 01:26 PM

The truth? I didn't read a word of that, I have no interest in your fake internet rivalry other than I want you losers to stop.

In real life Miami beat the Gators last year and we're not scheduled to play again.

In real life Miami fans don't care about the Gators and vice versa.

Only on this website, where there was a UF blog and no FSU blog for many years, is this childish back and forth trolling going on.

If it had to do with football there would be tons of comments about UM and UF's rival, the team dominating recruiting and the defending state and national champion.

There are no comments about FSU on this website because this nonsense has nothing to do with football. It's an outdated internet rivalry between internet nerds.

Just stop. Go away.

Not our  rival

Posted by: Fact Check | 05/01/2014 at 01:26 PM

The truth? I didn't read a word of that, I have no interest in your fake internet rivalry other than I want you losers to stop.

In real life Miami beat the Gators last year and we're not scheduled to play again.

In real life Miami fans don't care about the Gators and vice versa.

Only on this website, where there was a UF blog and no FSU blog for many years, is this childish back and forth trolling going on.

If it had to do with football there would be tons of comments about UM and UF's rival, the team dominating recruiting and the defending state and national champion.

There are no comments about FSU on this website because this nonsense has nothing to do with football. It's an outdated internet rivalry between internet nerds.

Just stop. Go away.

Johnny J

Reality Bites needs to go back and re-read the few posts regarding his immature and unintelligent opinions of delusion.You must be still in high school young one. That you even try to denounce such a POPULAR and HISTORIC football University is both laughable and lends credence to your myopic lack of intellect.Intelligent fans DO have an appreciation of History and theres ZERO doubt that they ALL anticipate and EXPECT that the Miami Hurricanes will win another National Championship.Guess Driskell s choking game and Miami beating (for the last time sadly for Canes fans)have you stuttering and stammering.Your loser comments equate you to a bufoon with your same old stupidity.You seem to have such sad existence.Sad for you.Anyway......I ve noticed you were gone about a month or two after Miami beat Florida.You are a wallflower when Miami beats your team.But...that s just U being a consistent loser.I applaud you for THAT consistency.

rboud

The last thing UM needs is another story that would possibly border on sensationalism produced by Showtime. UM has just gotten from under the NCAA cloud and needs to lay as low as possible while the Program recovers - good move by UM. Let Showtime sensationalize some other Program. Let them follow J. Winston for 24 hrs. and see how much trouble he can get in.

Penguin

The Dolphins have to pick Bitonio. You can never go wrong with a fun name.

1 2 »

The comments to this entry are closed.