As the search for a football coach continues and rumors run rampant, I've got to say I was a bit surprised this morning to find out the Hurricanes landed what looks like a diamond in the rough in 6-6, 215-pound South Carolina receiver Daniel Adderley. I spoke to Adderley's coach, former Clemson standout Dexter Davis this morning, who says Adderley is the real deal and is currently working on his speed at the D-I camp in Greenville, S.C., a camp Peyton Manning help setup. Davis compares Adderley, who had zero offers before UM came along, to Dwayne Jarrett from USC. Big comparison for a guy with zero offers. But then again, 6-6, 215 with 4.5 speed, I'm not sure you can teach that. (To hear the interview just check out our audio interview section. The link is the logo of the microphone on the UM homepage).
Anyway, what's encouraging about a guy like Adderley, who by the way has only been playing football since he first arrived in the U.S. from the Bahamas as a sophomore, is that he seems to be the type of under the radar star the Hurricanes used to get all the time -- the guy who is ranked nowhere in the Rivals.com Top 2,000. Assistant coach Marquis Mosely had himself a rough season this past year. There were more big drops than big catches. But if Adderley turns out to be a stud, consider it a huge victory for Mosely, who had a tough job to do to begin with. People forget UM lost Darnell Jenkins after only three games, Ryan Moore for most of the season and had to convert two DBs Ryan Hill and Rashaun Jones to receivers.
On the basketball front: How about Jack McClinton? His 30 points in Tuesday's 61-59 loss to Northwestern was impressive. He was fearless and took good shots for most of the game -- all except the last one really, which clanked off the rim from about 22-23 feet out. McClinton has clearly become the best player on the team and after seven games really looks to be of the same mold -- if not better -- than what Rob Hite and Guillermo Diaz provided for UM the last two seasons.
The biggest problem, though, is the rest of the team -- especially Anthony Harris and Anthony King -- looks like they haven't broken the spell of deferring to the star player. Harris, who was 2 of 8 from the field Tuesday and is now shooting 31 percent from the field, looks flat out uncomfortable. King, who has always been a great rebounder and defender, hasn't become more offensive this season. He has some range, but he's not playing like the beast he should underneath. Miami had 19 offensive rebounds and took 18 more shots than Northwestern, but didn't convert enough underneath. When you can't do that against a Wildcats team that really isn't that good down low to begin with -- that's bad.
In the end, the three losses to Buffalo, Cleveland State and now Northwestern, a team that barely beat North Florida 40-39 a few days ago, aren't good and will prove to loom large if UM improves and becomes NCAA or NIT competitive by the end of this season.