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Grading the Canes: OU Report Card

The unpredictable Miami Hurricanes are back. Just when you think you've got your finger on what this team is all about, they go out and surprise you again. What a win, what an effort, what an amazing 3-1 start and step up for Randy Shannon's program. Nobody who covers this team on a daily basis (not even the Kool-Aid drinkers) not even secret Canes fan Kirk Herbstreit thought UM would bounce back from its loss at Virginia Tech and win three of its first four tough games.

Now, the Canes control their destiny (somewhat). Win out and there's no doubt UM will play in a BCS Bowl game. Win out and get a little help with a Virginia Tech loss or two and who knows there's a chance UM could be playing in Pasadena. Here's the good news for the Canes (as long as they don't fall asleep), only two teams left on their schedule should really be tough tests -- at North Carolina (Nov. 14) and at South Florida (Nov. 28).

Here's who gets the love for the effort against OU...

Randy Shannon > Game balls - Offense: Javarris James (his 150 yards rushing on 15 carries were huge). Defense: Sean Spence (his team-leading 10 tackles were great to see). Special teams: Matt Bosher (did a great job pinning the Sooners and making them go the length of the field). Coaches: All of them.

> Helmet stickers - Offense: Jacory Harris (had two bad early picks, but was pinpoint the rest of the way).Defense: Ray Ray Armstrong (for his big lift), Vaughn Telemaque (for his nine tackles) and the entire beat up defensive line. Special teams: Corey Nelms (for his huge hit).

> Quarterbacks: Two of his first four passes went for interceptions. But after those two mistakes, Harris played like the Heisman candidate I still say he is. He finished 19 of 28 for 202 yards and three touchdowns. He made great decisions and throws on the game-clinching drive and threaded a perfect pass between four DBs to Dedrick Epps on his 11-yard pass. If not for the two early mistakes, Harris would get an A. Grade: A-.

Javarris James > Running game: How about Javarris James? I've been one of his biggest critics most of his career, wondering why UM continued to feature him as the primary back when Graig Cooper was playing better. James made me eat my words in the Canes' biggest win since he's been here. His career-high 150 yards were great, but what I enjoyed most were the tough, six and seven yard bursts he provided against what was the nation's No. 1 run defense. UM finished with 140 yards on 32 carries when you throw in Jacory Harris' four sacks. But make no mistake, the 175 yards UM gained were huge and as big a reason as any why the Canes won this game. Grade: A.

> Receivers/tight end: There were a few unnecessary drops. But all in all, when 11 different guys catch passes you have to tip your hat not only to Jacory Harris for spreading the wealth, but for guys stepping up and making plays. Aldarius Johnson made a nice return and finished with four catches for 45 yards. Travis Benjamin had three for 61 yards and a touchdown and Dedrick Epps made three clutch catches including one for a touchdown. And how about Jimmy Graham? He promised he'd catch the next ball thrown his way and he did. All he does is catch touchdowns: he's got two catches for two touchdowns. Grade: A-.

> Blocking: The Sooners stayed true to their season average by getting to Jacory Harris for four sacks. Jeremy Beal abused Matt Pipho and company for three of them. But where UM earned it's good grade was being physical in the run game and opening up some gaping holes. Big bad Gerald McCoy? He had a half tackle. That's a credit to UM's interior, AJ Trump, Joel Figueroa, Harland Gunn and Orlando Franklin did their job. Grade: B.

Ray Ray and Spence > Front Seven: Welcome back Sean Spence. Welcome back UM's good run defense. Welcome back pass rush. While things weren't pretty early, Spence and company answered the call over the final three quarters. Spence finished with a team-leading 10 tackles and Colin McCarthy -- playing injured -- showed his toughness after coming in during the second quarter and finishing with seven tackles. Oklahoma finished with 153 yards on 42 attempts. But take away Chris Brown's 48-yard burst at the goalline and the Sooners have probably their worst ay running the football in years. Allen Bailey and Marcus Robinson both got sacks and UM produced four quarterback hurries as a unit to make Landry Jones feel awfully uncomfortable. Grade: A-.

> Secondary: How do you measure the impact and lift freshman Ray Ray Armstrong provided this unit? With leading tackler Randy Phillips out and UM shorthanded by injuries at the position, Armstrong's bone jarring hits brought UM's defense and the home crowd to life. Vaughn Telemaque had a career-best nine tackles himself and except for one bad blown coverage, Brandon Harris was special. He had a sack and forced a huge fumble to help UM grab the lead. The only guy who had a forgetful game? Sam Shields. He got burned in coverage multiple times and was definitely somebody Landry Jones and the Sooners went after. All-in-all, UM limited Landry to 188 yards passing on 30 attempts. Not bad at all. Grade: B+.

> Special teams: There were a pair of ugly moments: Joe Joseph getting that bonehead penalty for running into the punter (even though it was very questionable) and the 51-yard punt return Dominique Franks had from his one yard line to put Oklahoma in position to come back and win the game. But overall, there were no major mistakes in kickoff coverage, Matt Bosher averaged 45.8 yards a punt including three that pinned Oklahoma inside the 20 and Mike James and Graig Cooper did decent jobs giving UM's offense good field position on kickoffs. And who will ever forget walk-on Corey Nelms' big hit to start the second half? That fueled UM's nice start to the second half. Grade: B+.

> Coaching: After being out coached by Virginia Tech, coordinators Mark Whipple and John Lovett put their players in the perfect positions to win this game. Whipple made the right decision to make OU respect UM's running game first before unleashing Harris and the passing attack. Defensively, after a terrible opening drive, Landry Jones and the OU offense simply looked uncomfortable with what Lovett was throwing at them. Even though Shields got burned, UM was in the right pass protection schemes. Personnel wise, Lovett made the right decision to cut Ray Ray Armstrong loose and continue to rotate him. UM coach Randy Shannon had his team ready, mentally and physically for this game. You couldn't have asked for anything more. Had UM lost this game, it certainly would not have been his or any of his assistants faults. Grade A+.


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'Go Canes!!!


Ray Ray Armstrong's big hits and intensity definitely brought a needed excitement to the defense. Now, the question is how the coaches continue to get him on the field. Even when Randy Phillips comes back, they need to mix Ray Ray in with Telemaque and Phillips. Not saying he should start over Phillps, but he definitely needs to get some rep's. With Brandon Harris, Ray Ray, Telemaque, Vernon, Ojomo, Forston and Spence all Freshman or Sophomores, this defense has the chance to be absolutely dominant next season once everyone gets healthy and gains some more experience.

If the team stays focused and takes each remainig opponent seriously, there is no reason that we shouldn't run the table and play in a BCS game this year.

Posted by: Booker T, STA,....NW is next....open the floodgates loooosers | October 05, 2009 at 09:25 AM

hey buddy we weren't going ater him hard!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! DONT' COME ON A UM BOARD IF U DON'T DO YOUR HOMEWORK. even trail himself told "inside the U" that he wishes to hear from UM alot more and that was said a couple of weeks ago. same goes for quntion dunbar, after he decommit UM is not recruiting him hard. LOL way to think that UM fans will be worried about a kid they were not heavily recruiting.

good player but, UM was not after him as hard.LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOSER!!!!!!lmao

Such a great game! Go Canes! F OU!

it was a good game.
keep fighting canes

Let Ray Ray play a lot every game he is a special player with swagger built in to his DNA. No more Sam Shields it is not working at all, can't cover and can't tackle, we know he is trying but it is a failed experiment. Get Jamal Reid or Brandon McGee in the game the next few weeks and get them PT (screw the redshirts, we win plenty of guys will want to come here). So we won't have this problem next year. This team needs to stay locked in and take nothing for granted. The rest of the teams in front of us many tough games ahead of them (exception is Boise State who plays nobody the rest of the way) and a lot can happen. Be we have to take care of business and the rest will take care of it self. Focus Focus Focus.

Great job to Randy Shannon and the rest of the coaches for the last 5 weeks, it was awesome that we made it through 3-1. Now it is time to nurture the young players along and get them some serious PT so that we will be set for next year especially on the Offensive Line. We need to see Arthur Brown, Jordan Futch, Ramon Buchanon and the other talent so we can determine what we have for the future and see them in game conditions. obviously we play them where we can, the first 4 games did not allow that, A&M will allow that.

we want corey lemonir locan not lynden trail and we dont want dunbar at wr either the only player um wans off of booker t is clements at wr miami wants harris from nw and mcartney those the guys the U wants

SammyNole and Rawpimple,

How U like us now?????????

I would like to thank Randy and the rest of the coaching staff, they have turned the corner and are headed in the right direction.

"The U Invented Swagger"

I really respect Sam Shields for doing what the team needs him to do and making the switch to cornerback. He has struggled all year but you haven't heard a negative word out of his mouth and he hasn't gotten into any trouble. That said, now that we're moving into the easier parts of our schedule, I really hope the next wave at CB gets some time and takes his spot away, because he is a huge void in the middle of an otherwise very impressive defense.

People are getting all over Joe Joseph for that "roughing the kicker" call, but that was a completely bogus call. If he touched him at all, it was a love tap for 5 yards and a re-kick. I think the replay showed, however, that the kicker moved into him, stepped on him, and fell over like a soccer player in the penalty box. Even the kicker was laughing about it on the sideline.

There are a lot of supposed 4 and 5-star south florida recruits that we don't seem to be very interested in. Dunbar and Trail are two. Gore is another. In the past I would have been very worried about this, but I think Randy Shannon really has his finger on the pulse of S. Fla kids, and knows which ones are all flash and which ones are the dedicated, hard working future pros that he wants. It has happened time and time again that a local 5-star was not recruited by Shannon and has gone elsewhere, only to get arrested or become academically inelligable. In fact, Shannon seems to be targeting (purposely) some of the lesser known commodities this year, even though he should be in a major position to land any kid he wants in Fla because of this start. I think he knows what he's doing here, and I love it. Gone are the days of offering scholarships to high star-counts. We're back to finding the diamonds in the rough. I love it.

Go Canes!

Gr8 call Manny about being out coached at VT i def. feel we didnt have a gameplan for this conditions and whipple trying to do play action deep in the rain was a bad game plan when we couldnt run the ball.. players didnt play all that well themselves.. i thought we were headed in the same direction against OU with the 1st 2 int's.... but kudos for jacory learning just cause the play action deep ball is called doesnt mean you have to throw it deep untill it opens up 3rd qtr travis benjamin.. with the lbs blitzin made good use underneath ..... not to mention the thing that highlighted the game was ray ray... and the 4 minute offense WE ARE NOT JUST QUICK STRIKE WE CAN BE A BALL CONTROL OFFENSE TOOOO!!!! THATS A MAJOR STEP IN BEING AN ELITE PRO STYLE OFFENSE

exactly shannnon knows which guys he wants recruiting,, i think over the last 2 years randy has won the state recruiting getting the most talented kids off the best state champion teams.. and he really has a knack i think of recruiting a stud that can help the team as a freshman where the team is weak at and getting quality guys that can develop

And the best part about it all is the the gaytor fan are worried. That would explain why the first post on the U blog after a big win over the Sooners is some negative crap out of a chicken sh*t Gaytor. Great, great game and now just stay focused and take them one at a time. Listen to Jacory and watch sponge bob not college football live. And to the coaches remember what got U here RECRUIT, RECRUIT, RECRUIT. U should be able to clena up in So. Fla. and get almost anyone U want so let's so theose Recruits start coming in and have another top-5 class.

go back to church and pray with tebow we all know your gaytard... gator season does sat against lsu and we will here you cry the same tune we didnt have our qb tebag.. kudos to urban meyer for grooming tebow for his future job prison clergy hell be able to reform all his old teamates that end up in jail.. i just find it funny how hes a gainesville prfoit but the rest of the team seeing more bars than the rest of the state programs

There are a lot of supposed 4 and 5-star south florida recruits that we don't seem to be very interested in. Dunbar and Trail are two. Gore is another.

- Shannon is close to winning the BCS, so he is recruiting players that fill a need, fit into his system, make the grades and can play right away.

Trail - He is 6'7 195, he won't be ready to play for another two years.

Dunbar - Miami isn't really interested in him, they have other receivers they are going after.

Gore - Way to small for a pro style O.

U still suck!

Just got lucky that Sammy did not play or it would have been awful!!!!

Every dog has his day I guess.

Famu will beatttttt you guys by 10.

Posted by: pedro

HAHA now you're just definitely a comedian, we don't mind comedians every now and then, FAMU by 10, HAHA, you crack me up, thanks for lifting up my morning!

the rest of miami recruiting class stacks up like this
clements wr
lemonier de
dunley wr
linder c
harris wr
mcartney wr
luc mlb

Why is Sam Shields in the game hes the worst cd in the ncaa. btw go canes

really what could have bradford done different jones played a hell of game.. non educated football fan or just a gaytard spewing nonsense..


I'm so happy for Randy Shannon and the program. Randy is a Cane to his core. Because of him we have a team to be proud of on and off the field. He'll do anything to make the team better. Ask Tim Walton, Patrick Nix or Robert Marve. Randy had a plan and look at how his plan came together.

Let's see ... U beat an awful FSU team by 1 when the winning pass deflects off the kids facemask ... U beat a 1-Dimensional Ga.Tech ... U then got absolutely THROTTLED by yet another 1-Dimensional Va.Tech team ... Then U once again win by just 1, @ home to a good team minus their Heisman Q.B. ...

And Ur Back ???

Congrats on 3-1 Cane Fan ... Now U Finish it over 13 games and shut me up.

ps- Re-up Shannon please . And, sshhhhhh, keep J-12 upright.

My guess is Shannon knows exactly who they want. They will sign the players they want to sign. He's not the type to worry about some stupid fan based recruiting service rankings. He's doing just fine with his own method.

And I think the other poster is correct. They do now want in potential academic or off field problems.

Apparently that doesn't bother Mr 27 of his players arrested Urban Meyer. Or as Stewart Mandel of Sports Illustrated called him:

"a twelve year old locked in an adults body."

Who really cares what the SEC does, they aren't really universities, they are just football factories in the poorest states in America. They could care less about the players. The biggest joke of all is a school in dirt poor state like Alabama paying a coach whatever number of million dollars Nick Saban is making.

If I was an SEC fan I would be embarassed about the childish coaches and the lack of academic standards. But hey, these are people who would vote for Sarah Palin. :-)

Manny report card: B+ picked OU to win.

SammyNole and Rawpimple,

How U like us now?????????

I would like to thank Randy and the rest of the coaching staff, they have turned the corner and are headed in the right direction.

"The U Invented Swagger"

Posted by: MTX-Cane | October 05, 2009 at 10:03 AM

How do YOU like UM now MTX???????????? You predicted on the Gator Clause blog that UM would lose to OU by 4! Child please!

Go 'canes!

Sarasota 'cane,

You still have the link to the OU fan on youtube?

How do YOU like UM now MTX???????????? You predicted on the Gator Clause blog that UM would lose to OU by 4! Child please!

Yep, I picked that one wrong plus a few others, but I did put 1 point on them in my ESPN College pick'em.

Nice picks you have there Jo, but I have:

I'm a UM fan but I think OU will win by 14

USC will beat Cal by 14

TN will beat Auburn by 3


UG will beat LSU by 14

Posted by: MTX-Cane | October 03, 2009 at 12:28 PM

My bad MTX! You said UM would lose by 14!!!!!!

How can you call yourself a cane fan, and then go on a rival blog and say UM will lose by 14????

Besides that most of your other picks were wrong as well! Do us all a favor and pick UF to win this week!

Go 'canes!

"Here's the good news for the Canes (as long as they don't fall asleep), only two teams left on their schedule should really be tough tests -- at North Carolina (Nov. 14) and at South Florida (Nov. 28)."

Manny, you've forgotten Clemson. They might have lost to Maryland yesterday, but they're still a complete team. THE U cannot sleep on any opponent. UNC lost to UVA and VT had a tough time against the Dukies. We better bring our A game.

pedro bro, it's nonsense. just shut up now. FAMU by 10. good lawd.

OU fan eating crow!


Go canes!

Hey Pedro/Curse/Kehoe/WhateverUR name is,

It's funny how OK was going to blow us out and than when we win, it is because of their QB being out... Well, we were playing without a safety, 3-4 guys on our D-line, a converted cornerback from receiver, McCarthy was playing hurt, etc...

Don't give me that crap U little puzzy!!

Do not forget that at least 10 of OK points were scored after borderline criminal calls by the refs... There were two very questionable pass interferences, the roughing the kicker, and the fake fg was a bad spot... The score should have been 21-10 at least...

But it doesn't matter, because we won, U were wrong, and we are on our way back!!

Have fun watching in misery U little douchebag, as the Canes march back to where we belong... The TOP!!!

The scary part is that this isn't our year, it is next year and the following!!

My 2 cents worth. PEDRO my advice to you, very politely "Go away" I made you a wager now it is time to pay up. Your perdiction of us loosing to OU by 77-0 was outlandish. Now you think we are going to loose to a Div II school by 10, man you are just not a fan. So I ask you real nicely, go away just disappear. Now on to the game as I saw it. First the worst officiating since the OSU game in the Rose Bowl. OU was holding on nearly every play, even the amuncers saw it then backed off the subject. As for the penilty for ruffing the kicker, please explain why theere was no review on that play? It was evident we did nothing wrong when the camera caught him laughing on the sidelines. Our team played with alot of guts and deternination. stars to both Harris's and to Armstrong. His 2 hits that were rerun several times would have knocked out a nornal player. Now to my real complaint and it is not against the U of M it is against Bob Stoops. I watch all the games with my grandson who at an early age loves the game of football. When Stoops yelled at one of his players and followed him as he was walking still yelling at him and this was caught by the camera my grandson asked why the coach was doing this. I told him that this was very wrong. recruits to OU will see this and think "Hey I could be next" make a mistake and he blasts you on National TV. I wrote a complaint to the athletic dept. of the University. I do not know if I will get a response. I did leave my e-mail address. I will let you know if I do. Finally this game should be an excellent recruiting display. If any young man out there wants to be a cane and play college ball for a top 10 team you better get on the list and do not wait till 2/10 it might just be too late. I'm not worried about how many stars follow a recruits name. If a coach see's something in a young man, that he can coach then I say sign him up. Thats why they are coaches and get paid the big bucks. Oh by the way to the AD of Miami and Donna, I think it is high time to extend the Head Coach's contract, if not we just may loose him to another college that thinks he is a higher comodity than you do. Loose him and we go backwards real fast. Thanks for alllowing me the chance to voice my views,

I thought you hated people making excuses Pedro? Man you went on and on about how UM fans are full of excuses afetr a loss. But here you are making them. Typical. Just mad you got no sleep Saturday night after eating your words. I forgot what was your prediction OU 77 Miami 0. Yea sure you know your football or in your case FUTBOL. GOALLLLLLLL!


SammyNoles = fan of underacheiving LOSER FSU team.

CANES = Winners and what college football is all about...Academics and winning and losing with pride and honor.

GO CANES...NC #6 and #7 are close at hand...

Great point JRod! We got to the party a year earlier than expected! Good times on the horizon! NEVER bet against this team to lose!

Go 'canes!

Re:"wow you beat a team without their top 3 guys and you are back. please stop all this bs I am going to be sick.

U still suck. Barely beat FSu that lost to BC. How pathetic is that.

OU would have beat you down worse than vt if all three of thier studs were healthy and playing. Stop the non sence." - Pedro

First of all Pedro, you spell like a third grader. Most browsers have spell check built in; those little squiggles mean you made a mistake. Maybe you are just used to them and ignore them. It just makes it really hard to read and understand your nonsense comments (look at how nonsense is spelled... idiot...).

As for your comments, lets start with FSU. They are a tough team to read. One week their offense obliterates someone, the next they look like stale moldy bread. I'm sure the inconsistency is brutal for their fans. But if I'm a gator fan (I don't know if you are one, or you are just a troll), I am not getting overconfident, because if they put up 40+, we will have ourselves a game.

Then you say OU is without "thier studs." (Maybe you are dyslexic; I'm sorry if you can't help it) Well, Miami was without a ton of their defensive studs (Randy Phillips, Adewale Ojomo, JoJo Nicolas, Dyron Dye). You see, two can play that game. In fact, I don't know if Bradford even makes that spectacular throw in the first quarter for THEIR TD; that was a hell of a throw.

At any rate, go canes!

Like I said, the VT game was all about the monsoon rain...which could have easily caused the refs to postpone the game with those extreme conditions. The Canes are for real...keep getting better guys because you have all of the pieces in place to win each week...

One week at a time...Play FAMU like they are GT or OU, but leave out the slow start of missing tackles and blown blocking assignments...You guys are a Great Team, start believing it and play like it.

Canes fan forever! Good luck guys on the rest of the season.

If I was an SEC fan I would be embarassed about the childish coaches and the lack of academic standards. But hey, these are people who would vote for Sarah Palin. :-)

Posted by: JSB | October 05, 2009 at 10:33 AM
yeah... obama is doing a wonderful job huh??

If you want to play the "if" fantasy and pretend Bradford was the difference, then you also have to include the injured Cane players. safeties Jojo Nicholas and Randy Phillips, TE Richard Gordon, FB Pat Hill, DL Dyron Dye, DB JoJo Nicolas, DB Randy Phillips and DE Adewale Ojomo who would have easily nullified any difference Bradford would have brought to the game (if any).

As for only winning by 1 they probably could have gone and got points in the dying minutes but didn't need to.

I'm sorry for my negative comments!

The report card seems reasonable except I disagree with the coaching staff grade. Love Shannon and the staff but 12 penalties for a buck 15 is out of control. Fortson 3 offside penalties???Need more discipline like we saw in Tallahassee. Overall great game and Baby J is showing he is ready for the league late just like EJ did...Go Canes

That's "big" of you pimple! Now pop yourself and ooze on out of here! There's a new sheriff in town!

Go 'canes!

I'm sorry for my negative comments!

Posted by: Rawpimple | October 05, 2009 at 11:14 AM

U can take that sorry and shove it up your arse!! all offseason and last year you came on this blog trashing randy and the team. don't be sorry just stay off the blog your comments are worthless and sorry does not cut it not for me or anybody that remembers how bad U talked about randy.

just root for your gators on your blog and stay OFF of a UM's blog.

what a gr8 story for javaris and graham... at the beg. of the year i said this team will go as far as our oline and senior leadership .... Manny stop hating on baby J he is our best all around rb... coop is good in open space but between the tackles he doesnt hit the whole hard or cut back hard he studder steps at the line of scrimmage then tries to make and move and ends up getting arm tackled.. baby j hits the whole hard and at least gets 3 or 4 yards not 1 to 2

I heard Ray Ray's THUMP from Section 426!!!

Gator fans are so insecure it's sooooo sad! Listen, take care of LSU and U have nothing to worry about.... or do you? Tebow's big head might not be screwed on right. OH OH =(.

All my Gator friends were quick to point out all the flaws in the U's victory on Saturday.

Sad man, real sad. How does it feel being the red-headed step child? even after winning 2 of 3?

Sorry, check the rating, the U runs this and always will. Just face it already and save your little comments.

"Oh were taking over NW". Give me a damn break we just took 6 players from their NC team u loser.

go canes !

Does anyone know what recruits were at the game?

Way to go Canes! Win every game rest of the season! Need VT 2 more lost the we go ACC Championship game , the BSC to Orange Bowl! Go Canes!

Win the ACC and get back to me.

correction canesville i think all we need is gt to beat vt and we win the tiebreaker....

don c i think it was said somewhere that 30 kids from the state probally the best 30 kids were at the game

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