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Top 60 Countdown: No 3, RB Graig Cooper

With the Canes participating in their third closed scrimmage of the fall and school set to begin Wednesday, I figured this was the perfect time to wrap up the countdown of the Top 60 players at Miami. By now, you've figured out who the final three are. Here's why Graig Cooper is No. 3.

022409_graig_cooper > What we heard about him on Signing Day '07: Cooper graduated from high school in 2005 as Mr. Football in Tennessee after leading Melrose High to the state title with 2,123 yards and 30 touchdowns. But he wasn't academically eligible to qualify for college and headed to prep school at Milford Prep where he maintain a strong relationship with former coach Larry Coker. At Milford, Cooper ran for 1,327 yards and 15 touchdowns (averaging 12.5 yards per carry) in a backfield that also featured current Philadelphia Eagles rookie LeSean McCoy. He stuck with the Canes despite Coker's firing.

> What he's done as a Cane: Since his arrival, Cooper has led the Canes in rushing and scoring (11 TDs). In 2007, he shared the Rookie of the Year award with Orlando Franklin after finishing with 682 yards and five touchdowns. It was the third most rushing yards by a true freshman behind Clinton Portis (838) and Javarris James. As a sophomore, he was named UM's Most Versatile Player after rushing for 841 yards and catching 29 passes for 113 yards and scoring six times (four rushing, one receiving, one punt return). He broke the century mark three times and carried it a career-high 24 times for for 131 yards in the OT win at Virginia.

> What Eye On The U expects from him in '09: Cooper had a boot on his foot last week for a day, but was back out at practice making moves and showing his teammates why he's still most capable running back on the team. At 6-feet, 205-pounds and 4.37 speed in the 40 (he timed as the third fastest on the team this spring), Cooper has all the ingredients to be even better this year. But the question is if he'll be able to breakaway from the rest of UM's backfield. Coach Randy Shannon has been quoted as saying he'd like for one back to do most of the primary work. Nobody is better fit to do that than Cooper, who has the best hands out of the backfield, picks up the blitz the best and has averaged 5.2 yards a carry in his career. Personally, if he can stay healthy, I expect Cooper to reach his goal of reaching 1,000 yards this year and being a serious contender for ACC Offensive Player of the Year.

FYI... Seeing how I didn't get a lot of time off this summer covering the Marlins, I decided to take this week off (knowing the Canes start prepping for Florida State next week). So, there will be no live Q&A today at 2 p.m. or any updates from practice later this week. Our Susan Miller Degnan will be out there covering it all when practice resumes Thursday morning. I'll be back out there beginning Monday.


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#3... Coop is a solid pick going into the season, but the whole team deserve equal credit if we are taking it to the ACC house. Back-ups and starters is what Miami is all about in 09 and remember, we're only as strong as our weakest link.

Regardless of who starts...It's how we finish that counts!

Canes will be ACC Champs this year.

he suck, put him on the same boat as sam shields, van dyke, and randy phillips........... if u get rid of those losers you might be able to bring back the so called "U".

COOP will need to keep James at bay with PERFORMANCE to get that elusive 1000 yards...the nice thing will be the 1-2-3-4 punch of the deep UM back field this year....

Coop is a Great back he should have been at lest number 2 in the count down he was proven he can consistantly play at a high level

where's the post about either the palm beach newspaper UM blog or sun sentinel UM blog? a poster put the link up yesterday but i guess the author of this site doesnt like the competition and deleted the comment. the poster mentioned that it was a pretty comprehensive blog taking in articles from all sources.


He suck? no you suck. Apparently you had no grammer school much less college.
Gators eat sh*t

Cooper may be the skinniest 200 pounder ever..
but good luck.

You deserve a week off Manny! Get ready for the season, and thanks for what you do with this blog.



When compared to other backs around the acc and country Cooper is about average not good enough for the U to make a big push, I would prefer using Chambers, M.James and Miller along with JJ NOT forcing Cooper to play a lot, he is too weak to be a horse.

He's a great break-away back but he goes down to easy. I keep hearing he has put on a few pounds, so maybe that will help him stay on his feet.

Enjoy your vacation Manny!

I'll take JJ any day of the week over Coop when HEALTHY...There's no way Coop is 205 sorry but every college does this to hype up a player. If he were to go to the NFL combine this coming year, you would find out that he's 5'9 and 185lbs soaking wet!


Looking at the canes depth chart and fsu, gt, vt depth charts.. The Canes have more experience as a team going into those games. The fate of this team will be in the hands of the offensive line. The offensive appears to have the weapons finally needed to exploit mismatchs if the line steps up.
If the defense can get some senior leadership and a playmaker or 2

3-0 start

A week off during the summer? Is that German your speaking? I don't understand, what does that mean? Enjoy.. (Must be nice)

look gulfstream blue, get cooper's jock out of your mouth and think logically.

Given such depth at RB I'm impressed Manny has Cooper at no. 3. That makes me think highly of Cooper's chance to shine this year. And since Shannon has the desire (presumably Whip's as well) to showcase a primary back, should be a kickass year for 2.
13 days till our reign begins.


season on the brink
-- john feinstein


Hey Green why don't you show some nutsack and say:



go ahead and spin this one you effin CLOWNS

BUH BYE Cook. Your two best QBS Marve and Cook have now BOTH bolted.

Randy don't like whitey and U are ONE PLAY from having AJ HIGHSMITH under center.

The first fan that says "scared to compete" should be beaten with a ice axe.

Lmgdao.... It OVAAAAAAAA!

Losing Cook is not good guys. I guess Shannon's comments about the backup not being set are to blame here. If Jacory goes down, we may not even win a game this year. That is truly my honest opinion as a realistic fan.

Why is it that guys are willing to wait 2-3 years at other programs, but here they are not?

Shannon truly may have bitten off more than he could chew. He is not head coach material guys. Lets be honest here. He may be a true cane, and has payed his dues, gone through hell in his personal life, and overcome many odds to become the head coach at a national program, but.... he just isn't cut out for the job... Plain and simple. I am not being a hater, just a realist.

We cannot continue to be the homer's that we are, as I admit to it myself, but everything that Shannon has done/gone through does not qualify him to be a head coach. I have gone through a lot, and that doesn't qualify me to be the CEO of my company.

Shannon is a great coordinator, not a head coach/ceo/face of a program type of guy.

I'd say that this is the beginning of the end for Shannon and I wish him well. He needs to win 8, maybe 9 games this year in order to keep his job in my opinion.

I truly hope that he does well, as I love rooting for the underdog, but not at the expense of my true sports love... Canes Football

AJ Highsmith under center.........

Let that sink in for a minute......

Lifetime extension for Marble Mouf. Lmao

"Screw U Kehoe, it's not Randy's fault that Cook is scared to compete."

u startin to see a pattern here DUMB CANE HONKS?


Hey Green why don't you show some nutsack and say:



Posted by: gaturd agent provocateur | August 25, 2009 at 01:05 PM

produce or else
-- Jimmy Johnson


Why is it that guys are willing to wait 2-3 years at other programs, but here they are not?

Because behind the scenes the players see what an underqualified moron Shannon is. Losing Cook is a MAJOR blow canefan.

U's building depths????? Broken jaws, "undisclosed SURGERY", and QB transfers is NOT... I repeat, IS NOT "building depths"(sic)

u are so SCREWED that I feel sorry for you.

Learn to show whitey some love Marble Mouf. Actually it's probably too late.

And he's a pathological LIAR TOO.


You are clearly someone who has never recovered from being bullied in the playground. Better yet, maybe you were molested by your uncle, father, et al, as a child.

The Canes truly have become your obsession in life. Get over it, see a shrink and don't forget your meds in the morning.

Do you have a girlfriend? boyfriend? dog? anything in life?

Stop with the canes hating, as it seems to have become your passion in life. You are truly one sad individual.

Nice RHETORIC. Typical response from a Kool-Aid snorting MORON


JJ ain't walkin through that door a s spipe.

Thanks for the advice "JRod" (sounds pretty gay)

My doctor advised me to hate on the canes as a diversion from my tendency to harm kittens. It's working.


Nice RHETORIC. Typical response from a Kool-Aid snorting MORON


JJ ain't walkin through that door a s spipe.

Posted by: gaturd agent provocateur | August 25, 2009 at 01:23 PM

that’s why U play the game …


What is going on?! We have to reduce the number of players leaving this program!
The current coaching staff believes in a "stock-piling philosophy" for certain positions. There is nothing wrong with having plenty of good players at the same position. However, the current coaches are implementing this in the wrong fashion. Stock-piling is done with players from different gaduating years, not players in the same graduating year. One suggestion is to reduce this philosophy of "same-graduating class stock-piling" philosophy. For example, why were we recruiting three running backs this past year. As it turned out, B Brown left but that was only after it was clear we were trying to recruit three running backs from the same year. How were we ever going to play three players from the same year anyways (even if we redshirted some of them) ? This stock-piling philosophy only works if the stock-piling is done with guys who are in different graduating years. We now have three quarterbacks leaving due to this same class stock-piling philosophy. The students leaving can see the selfishness of this philosophy.
USC has a bunch of quarterbacks but they are in different graduating classes, thus they know if they stay they will have a fair chance to see the field.
We have a stock-piling of wide-receivers which normally is not a bad thing , EXCEPT THEY ARE ALL FROM THE SAME GRADUATING CLASS. I suspect we will see some wide-receivers leaving after it is clear they will have no chance to see the field.
These college students are not dumb. The stock-piling philosophy, if implemented poorly (guys from the same graduating year),only helps the coaches but not there own chances. However, the stock-piling philosophy, if implemented correctly (guys from different graduating classes) , can be a win-win situation for the coach and players


JJ ain't walkin through that door a s spipe.

Posted by: gaturd agent provocateur | August 25, 2009 at 01:23 PM

that’s why U play the game …


Posted by: green | August 25, 2009 at 01:30 PM

great job Green..... More RHETORIC! The wheels are coming off and U are posting motivational quotes. Bring your "U NEVER KNOW" sign to the OU game ... Wave it proudly. U may just end up on the hi-def jumbotron eating your seventeen dollars chicken sandwich and waving your sign

Very true worried hurricane. This obvious philosophy clearly evades his Randyness. No one will ever accuse this guy of being smart.

You could not have been more redundant Worried. Reread what you type next time.

great job Green..... More RHETORIC! The wheels are coming off and U are posting motivational quotes. Bring your "U NEVER KNOW" sign to the OU game ... Wave it proudly. U may just end up on the hi-def jumbotron eating your seventeen dollars chicken sandwich and waving your sign

Posted by: gaturd agent provocateur | August 25, 2009 at 01:58 PM

I’m vegetarian …


Dang Manny. What a week to take off for vacation. Now that the initial sh** storm has passed with these two QB's leaving, guess we can all take a breath here for a sec.

Looks like AJ is not going to red shirt after all.

WTF is this about our QB2 and QB 3 transferring?

CORAL GABLES - Two Miami Hurricanes quarterbacks have decided to transfer.

Backups Taylor Cook and Cannon Smith were both granted releases from their scholarships. Smith made his decision Monday while Cook did Tuesday morning. Cook was originally named the backup to Jacory Harris after the spring, but coach Randy Shannon said Monday that competition had reopened.

"I don't think that had anything to do with it," said Smith, a redshirt freshman who entered preseason camp as the third-stringer. "It was what (Shannon) said, a competition. Some people might have read too much into who was getting reps. It came down to me evaluating what I thought was in my best interest."

Cook's departure could affect the Hurricanes the most. A redshirt freshman, he led the scout team last year and was expected to be the No. 2 quarterback. That role now belongs to freshman A.J. Highsmith, who has been on campus less than a month. He and Harris are the only two scholarships quarterbacks on the roster. The Hurricanes also have senior walk-on Matt Perrelli.

I don't get the "Randy don't like whitey" stuff. Marve is as black as he is white. In this country, that makes him black in the eyes of an overwhelming majority of the population.

On a different note, guess who UM's backup to Ken Dorsey was in 2000...

Ethenic Sands. I think UM will be fine.


Ke-wh-re: P$$ off you retarded rednck gaineville hog fking loser.

Um will be just fine. I agree with the posts about stock piling QBs in the same year.

By the way Loser gators... what would happen if your loverboy Teblow gets hurt? News is, he is nursing a sore back-either due to the PEDs or from bending over and letting Nurban do his thang.

Who is the backup? Anyone I know?

Bottom line is, Taylor Cook and canon (get a real name) smith are panzie losers- crybabies who wont compete. Vinnie sat for 3 years and waited his turn. So did Steve Walsh, Erickson and torreta.

So did leinart, Sanchez and The dude who QBd the patriots last year.

If youthink that you "deserve" to be a starter, then prove it on the field.

Now for the Devils Advocates- Was it really because of what randy said or is it speculation?

is he that stoopid?

Is Kirby Hocutt paying attention to this?

Maybe RS is better off at FAMU or Grambling. No I didntsay that. No I didnt.

Manny you slipped out at the right time or was it the wrong time.

I might also add that......

wait for it canefan......................


I hope you enjoyed your one day vacation, now what's going on down there?

I understand Taylor Cook tranferring, he was begining to make progress, but Cannon Smith?

Anyway...incubate Jacory Harris.


Randy Shannon is recruiting to rebuild a program, he needs to stockpile talent. In this case he's just a victim of his own success. What are the chances both Qb's trnsfer at the same time.


November: 9 vs. Florida Southern (Exhibition), 7:30 p.m.; 14 vs. North Carolina Central (SUN), 4 p.m.; 16 vs. Nova Southeastern, 7:30 p.m.; 19 vs. Tulane (Charleston Classic), 1:30 p.m.; 20 vs. Penn State/UNC Wilmington (Charleston Classic), TBD; 22 vs. TBD (Charleston Classic), TBD; 25 vs. Florida Gulf Coast, 7:30 p.m.; 28 vs. USC Upstate, 7:30 p.m.
December: 2 vs. Minnesota (ESPNU), 7:15 p.m.; 6 at Boston College (FSN), 3 p.m.; 12 vs. South Carolina State, 7:30 p.m.; 16 at Stetson, 7 p.m.; 19 vs. Florida Atlantic (FSFL), 2 p.m.; 21 vs. North Carolina A&T, 7:30 p.m.; 30 vs. Bethune-Cookman, 7:30 p.m.
January: 3 at Pepperdine, 7 p.m.; 9 vs. Wake Forest (ESPNU), 6 p.m.; 13 at Virginia Tech, 7 p.m.; 16 at Virginia (ESPNU), 8 p.m.; 19 vs. Boston College (RSN), 9 p.m.; 28 at Maryland (ESPNU), 9 p.m.; 31 vs. Virginia Tech (Raycom), 1 p.m.
February: 2 at Wake Forest (ESPN2), 7 p.m.; 6 at Florida State (ESPNU), 8 p.m.; 10 vs. Georgia Tech (ESPNU), 7 p.m.; 13 at Clemson (RSN), Noon; 17 vs. Duke (ESPN), 7 p.m.; 23 vs. Virginia (RSN), 7 p.m.; 27 vs. NC State (Raycom), 4 p.m.
March: 2 at North Carolina (Raycom), 8 p.m.; 6 vs. Florida State (ESPN2), Noon;
11-14 at ACC Men's Basketball Tournament (Greensboro, N.C.)

Seriously, we are really screwed if J-12 goes down ...

No way Highsmith can take the helm and be successful .

Time for some damange control Coach .

PLEASE NOT ANOTHER 6-7 Win Season !!!

MisManagement 101 ... Professor Randy Shannon





Walks... Quacks ... Flutters...

This is what happens when you promise a HS QB playing time his freshman year to get all his teammates. Everyone knows that Shannon has wanted Harris to be the Qb. Even Marve beat him out last summer, Shannon put Harris is every game in the second game regardless of situation. He offered some lame excuse but this year did not apply the same standard. He has not admitted a mistake on 3 QB's. I thought he was a recruiting genuis?

Quarterback U has now resorted to recruiting kids that other teams want at different positions. The program is far from back. When you can recruit studs like USC, UF and let them compete you are back.

Why cant Shannon recruit white QB's when the position is dominated by them?

Don't know why everyone is freaking out. What exactly did Smith and Cook do for us last year? Nothing!! It's gonna take a lot to get Jacory out of the game fellas. He played in the Emerald Bowl last year with a jacked-up shoulder and still went downfield with it and scrambled for yardage. With Whipple's system, he will be better protected than what Nix had to offer. If Highsmith has enough talent and knowledge of the plays to get all of the 2nd unit snaps in the last practice, then I feel pretty confident that he will do okay should something happen to Harris.

Canes will be fine.

Let the haters hate on our blogs because they're scrrrrrred.

Especially the UF fans that are really scared, they won't even play us every 2 years. Don't even try to make it seem like you're not either. If our freshmen last year kept you in check for 3 quarters, imagine what we could have done had they been sophmores? Just another notch in the Cane belt over the Gators.

GO CANES'!!!!!!

What exactly has Harris done? He was average at best last year. The guy was awful against the best teams on our schedule last year. Check the stats. Look at Kyle Wright's 1st year compared to Harris'. Why didnt Wright ever become god.

I love the Randy lovers. The would be killing Coker right now if this happened to him but all is great with Randy.

I'm not sure if someone thought of this, but it now seems that Ray Ray may have to learn the offensive playbook. He's not a bad 3rd option at QB.

Maddog Mandich just TORE U a new one Cane Fans ...
"Ur in denial Canefans if U don't realize that, out of ALL D-1 Programs, U are now the THINNIST at the MOST IMPORTANT Position in the ENTIRE Country."

"Ur ALL IN on One Guy... A Razor Thin Guy at that... U Better hope and pray that U don't BUST or it is Oooover in 2009 for U... Plain and simple."

Hey Arty... Get aload of Cane Stooges trying to soothe their hurt feelings by convincing themselves that RAY RAY can step right in Save the day if needed !!!

Oklahoma AIN"T Northwestern U Chumps ...
On a side note ... Tebows health is %100 as are his Developed BACKUPS .

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