« McCarthy, Moncur likely done for the year | Main | EXPRESS EDITION: Tuesday's news and notes »

Progress report: Florida State

I tried to get this done yesterday, but had Randy Shannon's press conference to get to and then transcribe. So, here it is today. Once again, feel free to share your grades and your thoughts on the progress of this team. In fact, I'll leave you with a few questions to ask yourself: Are you still willing to sit back and watch this team grow? Or, are you getting tired of the losing and demand wins now? And, finally, is this football team better than last year's team which started 4-1?

Onto the progress report. I'll remind you my grading system system, in honor of the Canes, is simple: National championship material (excellent), BCS worthy (good), MicronPC Bowl here we come (average), Coker-esque (poor) and Scout Team reserve (the bottom of the barrel).

Quarterbacks: This was the first time this season Robert Marve and Jacory Harris didn't look like All-Robert_marve_stuffed Americans. Rather, more like what they really are: freshmen. Marve wass 17 of 40 for 122 yards and an interception. He said afterward the ball was a bit slippery because of the rain, but wasn't really trying to make excuses. Florida State had a lot to do with his problems. The Seminoles defense applied a ton of pressure. Harris, meanwhile, also threw his first interception of the season. But he proved yet again he can at least move the team down the field. He drove UM down the field before the half and had a touchdown pass dropped by Leonard Hankerson in the end zone. Still, coach Randy Shannon said Sunday Harris deserves to play. And I agree with him. He's certainly not hurting the team. This week's progress report says: MicronPC Bowl here we come. The numbers weren't great. But a lot of that had to with receivers dropping passes. I liked the fight both quarterbacks showed dealing with heavy pressure and all in all, there weren't really a ton of mistakes on their part.

Running backs: It's hard to grade this unit this week considering Miami had to Graig_cooper_bottled_upabandon the run so early. But here are the facts: Graig Cooper's run of back-to-back 100 yard games came to an end. After getting off to a snails' pace on UM's first two possessions, he finished with 31 yards on six carries and actually moved UM downfield before a sack pushed the Canes back. Ultimately, I thought Cooper did a very good job picking up blitzers in blocking situations, something he asked Shannon to let him do. Marve and Harris after all only got sacked twice despite the constant pass rush. And neither time was it Cooper or any of the running backs' faults. Cooper also led the team in receiving with seven catches. This week's progress report says: BCS Worthy. I'm ultimately grading Cooper and this unit on what they had a chance to do -- catch the ball and block -- and not what they didn't (only 14 rushing attemtps in all). And I thought they did a good job at it.

Receivers/tight ends: Tough day when it came to the drops for the receivers -- especially the veterans Leonard_hankerson like Sam Shields, Leonard Hankerson and Kayne Farquharson. But I thought the freshmen did a great job when given opportunities. Aldarius Johnson appears like he's emerging from the pack. He had 5 catches for 55 yards including a beautiful play late in the game when he broke a tackle and scurried up field for a 27-yard gain on Miami's final scoring drive. Travis Benjamin had the biggest catch of the game on the trick play pass from Graig Cooper and Laron Byrd came through with a key fourth down catch to keep a drive alive. But the veterans are killing this unit. Shannon talked Sunday at length about his receivers and I get the sense he's ready to commit to the freshmen more and more. He also said position coach Aubrey Hill is stressing "stacking" where receivers sort of box out defensive backs to shield them from the ball -- something receivers haven't been doing enough. This week, Hankerson could be out with an injury, which means Jermaine McKenzie (who we thought would play and didn't) will get his chance in the slot with the only other healthy slot receiver on the team -- Farquharson. This week's progress report says: MicronPC Bowl here we come. Like you, I'm getting tired of seeing the drops by the veterans. Wet ball or not, they got to come up with it. The freshman certainly aren't having those problems.

Offensive line: No running game and lots of pressure on the quarterback. That's how the offensive line performed Saturday. The highlight? Left tackle Jason Fox scoring on a trick play. Florida State's front line was obviously better than UM's. The Canes certainly missed Reggie Youngblood at right tackle. Chris Rutledge started in his place -- not Tyrone Byrd like we were told -- and missed a key block early that led to one of two FSU sacks. Overall, for a unit Miami thought it was its offensive strength, this unit played the worst of any Saturday. Still, it was only two sacks officially. So, it wasn't that bad. This week's progress report says: MicronPC Bowl here we come. We all expected more and got less especially early. But Fox's touchdown and the fact there were only two sacks allowed saved the line's grade this week.

The Front Seven: All week long we heard about how great Miami's run defense had performed through four Antone_smiths_winning_td games. Then, they reverted to looking like they did against Virginia a year ago. Christian Ponder didn't feel much pressure at all and wasn't sacked once. Instead, he escaped the pocket on countless occassions and eluded slower Miami linebackers. 144 yards by an opposing quarterback on the run? Inexcusable. The lone bright spots for Miami were freshman Sean Spence, who led the team with 10 tackles and scored on a deflected pass/interception return for a touchdown, and Glenn Cook's stop of Antone Smith on a key third down situation. But that -- and a few nice stops by defensive tackle Marcus Forston in the backfield and one play by Joe Joseph -- was it. This week's progress report says: Bottom of the barrell. It certainly hurt not to have Colin McCarthy and to have Eric Moncur go down. But now this defense must get used to it. Both won't be back this season. There are just too many missed tackles and blown assignments happening. We'll have to see if it really is fixable.

The Secondary: The poster boy for UM's day in the secondary was freshman Brandon Harris, who was Fsu_abuses_brandon_harris flagged twice for pass interference, once for holding and missed several open field tackles. Harris, making his first start at corner, had a bad day and its excusable. But where is the veteran help? Florida State's receivers didn't abuse Miami like North Carolina's did a week earlier. But Miami still didn't do a great job wrapping up. Shannon said there is still too much arm tackling going on. The one positive was Bruce Johnson's interception -- the first for the secondary this season. But there were too many blown coverages and mistakes. How FSU scored on third and goal from the 20 is beyond me. Where were the safeties? This week's progress report says: Coker-esque. I'm beginning to wonder if I should change this category because not even Coker's defensive backfield was this bad.

Special Teams: Here is the one area Miami shined Saturday -- and Benjamin deserves all the credit. He Travis_benjamin not only scored on a 18-yard end around and a 51-yard catch, but he kept UM in the game and helped a struggling offense with his great returns. He finished with 274 all-purpose yards. Matt Bosher also had a great day. He was 3 for 3 on field goals on a wet field and averaged 45.3 yards a punt (that includes a 57-yarder). He also did a great job on kickoffs, kicking the ball into the corner and not allowing FSU to put together many big returns. This week's progress report says: National championship material. You can't ask Benjamin, Bosher and the special teams unit to do anymore than they did. Well, maybe play defense too.

Coaching: Aside from a few successful trick plays and some good efforts on special teams, Patrick Nix Randy_shannon and Bill Young were taken to school Saturday by Jimbo Fisher and Mickey Andrews. Miami didn't fall behind 24-0 by accident. FSU shutdown Miami's running game and put immense pressure on Marve and the quarterbacks with blitzes it seemed UM only was able to adjust to in the second half. Young honestly never made the adjustments to stop Fisher's offense. This week, the real challenge begins for Young who has to find a way to make this defense better without Moncur and McCarthy. This week's progress report says: Coker-esque. All of the offensive woes (drops by receivers) weren't all Nix's fault. But the offense didn't look great. I've already ripped the defense enough.

Comments

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

EXCLUSIVE: Canes land huge commitment

Many Cane fans were worried Miami wouldn't have room for this standout prospect after taking other commitments at his position. But the Canes found room, and now he's on board as a commitment in this recruiting class.- Rivals

Why play any upperclassmen. Leave them all on the bench. Glenn Cook is the only one who has redeemed himself, leave the rest of them out. Lets use the rest of the season to get these guys some experience.

Sam Shields should never see the field again.

Pat Nix has to let it fly...we are going to need to score points to win.

What linemen are in the next recruiting class??? Our offensive line is pretty bad and we need to be able to pound the ball at teams. If there are no linemen in South Florida, we need to go elsewhere.

by the way the prospect that caught sean spence eye at the game was 2010 player khalid marshall a cornerback out of miami nw not cliff harris

Lamar Miller to the U!!!!!! It just keeps getting better and better and better. We have the big backs and the slasher to go with James and Coop.

Give Shannon time and he will turn it around!

I come to this site because my beloved gaytords are losing out on the S Fla. recruits, I need to try everything to turn this around.

It isn't working, now Lamar Miller (Another top back) isn't going to my school.

Shannon is the man and he is turning your school around.

Think I will take some time off and sux my own canesrule thumb??

LSU is going to woop our a**!

jh

I love the Miller pickup, but why are we still targeting RB's? We need a host of offensive linemen. What good is it to get amazing weapons if you don't have the big boys up front that will give the QB the time to manage the game?

We also are in deep need for DB's. Stop looking at WR (we're set for now) and RB's and start addressing the needs of this team, Shannon!

We have a bunch of kids who were at their senior proms 5 months ago trying their best to bring us back. I hate losing too but I'm just taking it as preseason. Getting ready for next year were we will be ranked in the top 15 preseason and we'll have Oklahoma coming in week 2 to Miami. they will be ranked #1 or #2 when they get here. We beat them and we'll be top 5 in week #3. We will be better and we will dominate next year. Losing leaves a bad taste in your mouth and believe me this kids will go to Tallahasse and north Carolina and beatr them both by 3 touchdowns each. Garanteed. Fsu looses Antwon Smith who had 4 touchdowns and we bring back everybody. Let them make mistakes this year, let them feel what losing is. Let them learn to take everybody seriously. That has killed us in the past(losing to stupid team we had no business losint to) just cause we were the U. We will rise and we will be dominant. This team is for real. Every expert that talks about the canes (nationally) says yeah they losing but watch out for Miami in the next couple of years. They'll be contending for a national championship. Nationaly their being looked at seriosly and that brings recruits.BCS National Champs 2010! be patient and wait.

I'll take college football for 200, Alex!

They won their 1st SEC Title in 1983, only to have it stripped for serious recruiting violations.

WHO ARE THE FLORIDA GAYTORS?

CORRECT

Go 'canes!!

I'll take college football for 400, Alex!

This SEC school joined the conference in 1938, and then went on to win their FIRST SEC Title in 1991, 53 years (Is that a typo?) later!

WHO ARE THE FLORIDA GAYTORS?

CORRECT

Go 'canes!

I'll take college football for 600, Alex!

What SEC school has the hottest girls, who love to bang...anybody, from anywhere, anytime?

WHO ARE THE FLORIDA GAYTORS?

CORRECT

Go 'canes!

And now it's time for Final Jeopardy!

What Florida college has won the most NCAA National Championships in all sports combined, AND beat their hated rivals 6 straight, over a 23 year period?

WHO ARE THE FLORIDA GAYTORS?

OOOHHH, I'M SORRY! THE CORRECT ANSWER WAS THE MIAMI HURRICANES!

THEY HAVE NINE TOTAL NCAA 'SHIPS, TO FLORIDA'S 4! WELL THANKS ANYWAY FOR PLAYING TODAY, AND THANKS FOR BRINGING THAT GAYTOR $KANK WITH YOU, SHE SURE "THROWS" A NICE ONE! THIS IS ALEX TREBECK FOR JEOPARDY SAYING GOOD NIGHT FOLKS

Go 'canes!!

Brock Berlin beat the Florida Gaytors!!

I TAKE IT BACK, SOMETIMES CHICKEN SHYT, CAN TURN INTO CHICKEN SALAD

Go 'canes!!

"Sarasota Cane" is canesrule 9 ships. One of those evil multiple name posters.

Posted by: The ghost of Art Kehoe(Bob) | October 06, 2008 at 01:17 PM

Canesrule,

I'M BATMAN

Go 'canes!!

Bitter, hateful, and jealous!!

COME ON GAYTORS, GET UP AND GO

Go 'canes!

The Gaytors have the best facilities in college, a 4 loss Heisman QB who like to operate on pp's, the greatest coach to ever walk the sidelines at Utah, I mean Bowling Green, I mean...oh hell you know who I mean, and they still cannot beat Ole Miss!!

FLORIDA, WE DO LESS WITH MORE

Go 'canes!

Posted by: Kehoe aint coming back...its OVA | October 06, 2008 at 04:16 PM

I think we are witnessing the first virtual nervous break down on our blog!! This is awesome! The word "loser" just seems so inadequate for this guy!

Are the drugs psychotrophic, or do you think he is on stimulants?

I'M STAYING FOR THE FINALE

Go 'canes!

Maybe I overslept that day, but did we ever offer Kehoe the head coaches job? Didn't we fire him? Right or wrong, I'm pretty sure we washed our hands of him when Coker was here.

Sorry Canesrule!

LATCHKEY KIDS, WHERE'S DANNY ROLLING WHEN YOU REALLY NEED HIM

Go 'canes!

I don't live in Sarasota? Tell that to the property appraiser!

COMPLETE LOSER

Go 'canes!!

I'm still very optimistic about da U and Coach Shannon. The team is much better than last year even with an inferior record.

During the game, we saw the next playmakers emerge on both sides of the ball, Travis Benjamin and Sean Spence. Jacory Harris, in limited opportunities once again led the offense to points - the first points of the game. While most Cane fans don't like the dual QB system, one could argue that Harris has led the team to more points in limited opportunities - quite impressive for a 17 yr old.

Give Shannon and the team the ability to grow and learn...the U will be back dominating in no time.

Unlike you, I have only one identity...or do I?

I'M BATMAN

Go 'canes!!

How long are you going to use different city cane names you loser? You don't live in Sarasota. Don't use sarasota you flaming loser.

Posted by: The Curse of Kehoe will forever haunt DuhU | October 06, 2008 at 04:45 PM

Schizophrenia!

YOU NEVER HAVE TO GO THROUGH LIFE ALONE

Go 'canes!

Canesrule,

You're doctor called. He said, "I'm afraid that's as big as it is ever going to get"!

TIME TO BUY THAT CORVETTE

Go 'canes!!

Casual Observer - We have positive news today in recruiting and you want to inject negativity.

How in the heck do you know what and who Miami is recruiting? You read all the websites then your a recruiting expert.

We have 3 DB's coming in and I'm sure they are targeting every OL men in the country, it just takes time to get them and not all will come.

We could end up with the fictional #1 recruiting class and you would probably complain about not recruiting a long snapping center.

Chill out and learn to be positive, it will make your life better!

The UF campus is awesome!

"Excuse me sir, could you tell me where the political debate is"?

DON'T "TASE" ME BRO'

Well it's time for dinner! Canesrule's Mom and I got a "little somthin' somthin'" planned for later!

IF THE DUMPSTER IS A ROCKIN', DON'T COME A KNOCKIN'

Go 'canes!

Shannon is around and Florida State and Florida will keep being the top programs in Florida.

Posted by: CokeCanes | October 06, 2008 at 05:44 PM

WE LOSE "BETTER" THAN THE U

Go 'canes!

Bitterness!

IT'S A GAYTOR THANG, YOU WOULDN'T UNDERSTAND

Go 'canes!

I wish that NCAA record 58 game home winning streak belonged to The U and not the Gaytors!

YOU'RE NOT IN GAINESVILLE ANYMORE DORTHY, THE NCAA RECORD 58 GAME HOME WINNING STREAK DOES BELONG TO THE U

Go 'canes!

Canesrule,

You're Uncle Fester is here to see you. He want's to play "hide and seek" with you again!

BUT I DON'T WANT TO TOSS HIS SALAD

Go 'canes!

can't wait to watch LSU Spank the Gayturds this weekend.

Posted by: jaycanes | October 06, 2008 at 05:57 PM

I can't agree more!

I was just over at The Gator Clause blog for the 1st time. WHAT A JOKE!!! I clicked on the last 2 blogs and there were about 5 posts between them, and half of those were from a UM fan! No wonder those losers are always on our blog!

On top of that, they are blowing up their own blog worse than ours!

GATOR NATION, THE MOST BITTER/SPOILED FANBASE IN THE COUNTRY, BAR NONE, LOSERS

Go 'canes!

The University of Florida

THE NEW YORK YANKEES OF COLLEGE FOOTBALL

WE DO LESS WITH MORE

Go 'canes!!

Monday Night football is over, I won my fantasy game by 1 point, and two losers have been posting on my blog, bad mouthing my beloved team!

Canesrule/CokeCanes, you two are never funny, just bitter! LSU is gonna mop the floor with your sorry team!

GO GET YOUR SHINEBOXES BOY'S

Go 'canes!

Tim Tebow circumcised several little pp's on his mission!

TIMMY, CAN I HAVE MY FORESKIN BACK

Go 'canes!

Imagine what Missouri would do to that weak @SS Canes secondary???

I GUESS WE COULD IMAGINE THAT, BUT WHY? DOES YOUR MOM HAVE A FILTER ON YOUR PC THAT PREVENTS YOU FROM ACCESSING PORNO? YOU QUEER(S)

Go 'canes!

SCORING UPDATE:

Miami 9 NCAA Championships

Florida 4 NCAA Championships

MIAMI WINS, AGAIN

Go 'canes!

I bet Missouri would put on 135 points on the Canes.

Posted by: CokeCanes | October 06, 2008 at 07:52 PM

How long have you been playing cards Coke?

I'M GOING ALL IN

Go 'canes!!

CANES ARE KEEPING RB LAMAR MILLER HOME...PER RIVALS.COM

I can't wait to watch UCF beat up on the Canes.

Posted by: CokeCanes | October 06, 2008 at 07:50 PM

I can't wait to watch Ole Miss beat up on Florida!

I LOVE MY NEW DVR

Go 'canes!


Canes fans are exchanging their Canes gear for Dolphins gear and Devil Rays gear as we speak!

Posted by: CokeCanes | October 07, 2008 at 07:14 AM

Looks like Coke is exchanging Gaytor gear for Alabama gear!

SEC, WE LOSE BIGGER AND BETTER THAN ANY OTHER CONFERENCE IN THE COUNTRY

Go 'canes!

Eight of the SEC's 12 football teams have been found guilty of major rules violations since 1987.

SEC, WE CHEAT BIGGER AND BETTER THAN ANY OTHER CONFERENCE IN THE COUNTRY

Go 'canes!

Lamar Miller staying home with the Canes

Miami-Florida has snared a commitment from Lamar Miller, ranked No. 117 overall and No. 12 running back in the Class of 2009.
Miller chose the Canes over LSU, Florida, Florida State, Clemson, Central Florida and West Virginia.

ESPN's Billy Tucker said of the news, "Like the recent stock market, Miller has seen his stock plunge since being labeled by many as the top back in Florida last spring. We have stayed consistent with his No. 12 overall national ranking and think he still has the physical tools to develop into a well-rounded, productive college running back."

"This was an interesting pickup and bit surprising as the Canes already have two quality backs in Bryce Brown (Wichita, Kans./East) and Mike James (Davenport, Fla./Ridge) on board for 2009. Brown does appear interested in taking visits so this may be an insurance policy if he does decide to decommit, but that is highly doubtful in our eyes. Either way, Miami now has commitments from three backs, two on the ESPNU 150, with similar stature and running styles."

"Like Brown and James, Miller has a great blend of size and speed at the running back position. He has the body composition and decisive in-line running style needed to develop into a high-carry college back while also giving you a perimeter threat with his good burst of speed and acceleration. Miller needs to build more strength and lower-body power for improved yards after contact, but we feel this kid is physically very impressive as a back. This was a good in-state pickup for Miami, its 8th homegrown prospect for 2009."

The 205-pound prospect rushed for 1,126 yards and 12 touchdowns during his junior season.

Yo.....talent is talent. You don't stop recruiting a talent like Miller just cause you don't have OL right now...you recruit the OLs as well. And then you have both. Get the best players period.

Dammit! How do you guys get better recruiting classes even though you've had a crappy 2 years? You were 5-7 last year but still had the #1 recruiting class. And this year your still reeling in the recruits, aghhh!!!!

I used to think recruiting didnt really matter but upon talking to timmy tebow and brandon james, they said, "I couldnt believe how hard that freshman Spence plays/hits, if this is gonna be the the beginning stages for miami, its gonna be scary, thank GOD we dont play them until 2013, and thank GOD we'll be gone by then."

And you heard it here first!

No wonder all the Gaytor fan's are over at our blog (Eye on the U) talkin' smack! There is nobody here! This blog sucks!

Go 'canes!!

I love the Miller pickup, but why are we still targeting RB's?

Posted by: Canester | October 07, 2008 at 10:47 AM
U pursue superstars ...

SCARCE RESOURCE

I'm going to egg Manny's car...Its a ____________ with dubs with a ____ personalized tag.

Posted by: Quijote | September 22, 2008 at 09:25 AM

Randy Shannon can't recruit outside of Northwestern lol.

Posted by: Quijote | October 06, 2008 at 12:29 PM
Lamar Miller hails from killian ...
har dee har har ...

OUT OF THE BOX

U now play in the mediocre ACC

Posted by: gaturd agent provocateur | October 05, 2008 at 08:20 PM
a bcs conference with an Orange Bowl tie-in & a phat TV contract ...

ELITE

Some RB's will have to change positions based on the incoming class. ie... not enough DB's will cause RB to move over to the defensive side of the ball. Athletes are athletes. Ya just have to coach em' up!

The comments to this entry are closed.