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Graham giving football a shot

Jimmy Graham hasn't played football since the ninth grade. But he's not letting it stop him from giving it another shot. 

Jimmy Graham Around lunchtime Wednesday, University of Miami coach Randy Shannon confirmed the rumors we'd all been hearing for weeks when he told reporters during his 10-minute ACC teleconference that the 6-8, 260-pound Canes power forward will indeed be trying out at tight end.

"We will give him a chance if he wants to do that," Shannon said. "I told Jimmy he has an opportunity to come back to school, enjoy the dream of playing football. He's been around, been with the players, Jacory Harris some... with his size and speed he may help us."

The Hurricanes could definitely use the help. UM is not only thin on experience at tight end, they don't have any proven talent aside from Dedrick Epps. Seniors Richard Gordon and Tervaris Johnson and redshirt sophomore Daniel Adderley took the majority of the snaps the spring and looked average at best. Stephen Plein and Billy Sanders will likely not be ready to help as true freshmen. 

Wednesday, Shannon provided some good news when he told reporters Epps, coming off knee surgery in December, was ahead of schedule. "He should be ready for camp, should be running full speed in July," Shannon said. "He should be full speed and ready to go." 

But it's Graham who could be the most intriguing prospect at the position considering his size and athletic ability. Some of the NFL's best tight ends -- Antonio Gates, Tony Gonzalez -- have come from the basketball court. Graham, who is declining interviews according to UM sports information director Margaret Belch, could be the next one. 

Wednesday, after Shannon's press conference, I caught up with Carlos Peralta, Graham's old basketball coach at Charis Prep in N.C. Peralta, who has talked to Graham at least once a week since he's been at UM, told me the football team approached Graham about giving tight end a try. Peralta said Graham wrestled with the decision for weeks, praying on it for days before finally telling Shannon recently he would give football a shot. 

"First and foremost what swayed him was that he's enjoyed his time at UM," Peralta said. "And he saw this as an opportunity to extend his experience a little bit. He talked about going to graduate school, how he'll be able to be a double major [marketing and business] by the time he graduates. Jimmy always loved football. It was his first love really. The way he and I see this is he gets to let go of more unleashed aggression -- without the fouls."

According to Peralta, Graham explored all of his basketball opportunities before deciding to give football a try. He looked into potential agents and contemplated offers from overseas -- as far East as Russia.

"Options were available to him," Peralta said. "I think the bottomline is he felt like it was a bit of an unknown in terms of environment. Although the money looks good on paper, he didn't know if he'd enjoy living for six months in Russia. That's what it really came down to."

> Shannon discussed a few other topics during his teleconference including his new coordinators, UM's NFL First Round Draft Streak coming to an end and how Taylor Cook will enter the fall as the team's No. 2 quarterback (which we expected). Nothing was earth shattering. FYI, it's likely the last time we'll hear from Shannon until fall practice begins.

> While I realize many of you might have been miffed by my last blog on recruiting becoming a little more challenging locally for the Canes, I want you to know I had several interesting conversations with several UM staff members behind the scenes about it this week. 

One person told me the reason it is getting harder is because of the emergence of more "mentors" locally. These people could be trying to earn "favors" with outside schools. I'm not going to point any fingers (just know I don't write blogs to stir up controversy or to get hits). I've had my finger on the pulse of recruiting here in South Florida for years. Something isn't right. With severe budget cuts happening on the high school level in Miami-Dade and Broward, assistants and people around programs are losing their jobs. Understand there might be a few desperate guys out there trying to find "help." They are beginning to point kids toward a particular school for that reason. UM knows it and they're trying to fight it. It's just not so easy when some schools have something to offer and The U does not want to get involved in that at all. 


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Party on, Miami (4/21/09)

Posted by: BIG CANE | April 22, 2009 at 02:59 PM



Posted by: green | April 17, 2009 at 02:48 PM

McClatchy’s raleigh paper reads Eye on the U …
plagiarism is the sincerest form of flattery …


This blog is done, nice knowing you.

Posted by: Canesjunkie | April 22, 2009 at 10:01 AM

So its elsewhere I go for info.

Posted by: SebastianDaIbis | April 21, 2009 at 09:57 AM

R.I.P. Eye on the U, you will be missed!

Go 'canes!

Posted by: Sarasota 'cane | April 21, 2009 at 11:52 AM

rumors of my death are greatly exaggerated
-- mark twain

I like the story. Let the kid be a kid and play multiple sports. You are only a kid once. I hope the kids does it.

HOLY SHYT Bull Gator/U are no Kehoe ( my favorite)/Mycanes mind is a terrible thing to waste/ U wills stay forever dumb/dumbazzJamie/ 'Lil Steamer, You've kicked this guy around tonight. Not that it's that hard to take batting practice on him. It is nearly impossible though to get him/them to take an objective look at the state of the U.


These guys have been polluting UF blogs for YEARS. Yet we are supposed to "stay the fu@% out of HERE? SCREW U delusional moron. As long as the world class flamer/spammer/liar/3:00AMtroller continues to pollute our blogs U will receive the same. The only difference being, we stick you in your squinty (kehoe old skool) eye with opinions based on FACT. Where U post opinions based on tired rhetoric and the what U USED to be. What U used to be and what U are are two COMPLETELY DIFFERENT things FOOL. Don't agree? Just ask GT,NC,UVA,FSU, etc...... U have some serious beatdowns awaiting U in 09. Those opinions are based on your pathetic performance for many years running and your continual inability to develop players. It's a giant clusterfu$k down there. Say it isn't !

What is this guys obsession with UF's finances? He has IMAGINED this whole doom and gloom scenario. Does he have ANY idea how much money rolls into the UAA????? Gator Nation is RABID about its team and shows that in it's overwhelming financial support. Go look at the Bull Gator parking on game day and witness the endless line of extremely wealthy alumni in quarter million dollar RV's who pour money into the program. The little guy supports the program too as every game sells out. This same clown has been flaming UF blogs with his $8,000,000,000,000.00 jumbo-tron rant. SHUT UP YOU delusional little bean counter. Or continue with your clueless rant. Fact is, Gator Nation realizes that the ENTIRE state is in a money pinch but will continue to support the FOOTBALL MACHINE. It is what it is. State schools MAKE COLLEGE FOOTBALL GREAT. You endlessly indict "State schools" as though they are some horrible influence of college football. CLUELESS FOOL. Keep telling yourself that your little private school is at some advantage. It's laughable.

U keep carrying on about how glad you are that UM is small and self sufficient and private. WHAT A MORON. That exact thing is at the BASE of your steady erosion. Couple that with Donna and U R SCREWED !!! I think we can all agree that the erosion is clearly showing itself on the PERMANENT win loss record.

Debose? Please cane fan. Snap out of it. EVERYONE was recruiting all of the trio. All schools win some, lose some. Not getting a recruit isn't a "loss." It's the nature of the beast. Intelligent fans instead look at what you actually landed. And YOUR BELOVED ESPN RANKED UF ahead of U this year. Look FOOL, a lot of schools landed a LOT of good recruits in this cycle. Not just Florida. Not just UM. It's what you do with them that really matters. And we've seen for far too long that U are clueless in the leadership/development department. RANDY SHANNON? Okay cane fan. Roll with that guy. Afterall, he did win a "Trailblazer Award" from the Orange Bowl Committee. (cruel joke) In case you haven't noticed, your program is a Coaching CAROUSEL. How many ineffective defensive coordinators have you had in...oh lets say...the LAST FOUR YEARS ! ( U cry,we laugh)

U fan likes to think they are "marching back" because they are young and recruit very well. NEWSFLASH DORKO: UF is YOUNGER, recruits BETTER and are also the NATIONAL CHAMPIONS. It's as though you think no other school is recruiting. It's all about DUH U. ESPN ranked you #11 in this recruiting cycle. The ten teams ranked ahead of U all have more money, BETTER facilites, and BETTER COACHES, all of which ultimately leads to BETTER leadership. Cane fan just can't grasp this. Oh no, it's a U thing. Pay attention to the U. Yawwwwwwwn.

U are just a .500 program now. Maybe a shade above .500 to be fair. It can still be fun. But it will NEVER be the same no matter how much empty rhetoric U throw out. Your last two HC searches were FLAMING DISASTERS. Coker, Shannon. "Nuff said !

If you think you will be lead to the promise land by Jacory Harris, the NORTHWEST BALLAH, you just aren't very smart. Nice kid, GREAT kid, but he can't sniff the jock of the likes of Sanchez, Bradford, Tebow. Sorry kids, He's a nice little QB but that's it. Maybe he'll mature into a 9-10 win QB for you. That would be nice. But if you had a clue you would set your sights on the STINKING ACC TITLE first. You're inability to grasp that is a fatal flaw. Bottom line, nothing develops at UM. Just look at your steadily dropping draft prospects, terrible record, and horrendous breakdowns in units that lead to historical blowouts.

And finally, SHUT UP with the "when Urban goes to ND" NONSENSE ! U guys should get an award for being the most ignorant to facts. FACT IS, Notre Dame came at Urban HARD when he was choosing his last job. He would have gone THEN if it was truly his "dream job." He said dream job tongue in cheek and KNOWS you can't win there. Cane fan will NEVER grasp this and will continually salivate about when "Urban leaves." Keep dreaming fools. He came to the best AD in the country and championships are FLOWING IN. His entire staff and all associated with him speaking GLOWINGLY about him, even the ones who have departed. Coaches across the nation and conference praise him. Yet clueless cane fan is sitting in the corner crying about him lying to a linebacker and kicking a field goal. You guys are complete idiots.

The most POIGNANT FACT about how fall you've fallen was pointed out earlier. Your F'in KICKER was your team MVP. Have you fully digested how sad that is?

I agree, this is too easy.

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