If there was a point last season when Jacory Harris proved to Randy Shannon he might be better than Robert Marve it was at Virginia. With the Hurricanes trailing 17-10 in the fourth quarter, Harris came in and marched Miami right down the field for the tying touchdown and then the winning score in overtime.
We all know what happened after that. Earlier this week, I gave you Jacory's stats through his first four games when fans were chanting Heisman (69-112, 61.6% comp, 8 TDs, 5 INTs, 1,008 yards) and his last four when they've wanted someone to reel him in for throwing the ball up for grabs too often (75-120, 62.5% comp, 8 TDs, 6 INTs, 1,096 yards).
So why does it feel like he's not playing as well as he was earlier this year? Because he's getting sacked more (UM has given up 20 sacks in its last five games) and because he's making the same mistakes on the same blitzes.
"It's been a common thing," Harris said of the interceptions. "I'd say last game [Wake Forest], the Oklahoma game and FAMU, just about all the interceptions look the same. It's the same blitz, the same coverage and the same routes. But just a different play going to that side. It's sort of the same thing. They've been on blitzes."
So the challenge now is "when we're running something of that kind just to make sure I'm doing the opposite of what I have been doing."
Harris said he and offensive coordinator Mark Whipple sit down every week and review every pass -- completed, incomplete and intercepted. Sometimes, receivers will join in during the study session.
"I'm making little mistakes here and there. For the most part I'm doing okay," Harris said of his play. "One of the picks I threw was costly this last week. But I don't think any interceptions put us in real bad situations to the point where we couldn't get out of it."
"I know I can get better. Looking at this season, we've come through with some big-time victories. And I just feel like as long as I'm playing to the point our team can win, I have to keep on getting better individually and we'll come out with better victories and not come out with so many close games."
JACORY'S ARM STILL HURTS... Of the 24 sacks he's taken and other unaccounted hits, Harris said the one he still feels is the one Florida State freshman Greg Reid delivered to his throwing elbow on a pass that was intercepted and returned for a touchdown in the opener.
Harris said his elbow doesn't bother him when he throws the ball, "but it does when anybody touches it."
"People say I'm too skinny for this, too skinny for that," Harris said. "But I've survived so far. You just have to be tough."
He leads the team with seven sacks, 9.5 tackles for loss and is finally exhibiting the special playmaking ability that made him one of the nation's top recruits in 2007. So what has been the reason for Bailey's emerge of late? It's simple according to safety Randy Phillips.
"He moved from defensive tackle to defensive end -- that's it," Phillips said. "He's too big, strong and fast. There's no tackle that can match up with him in the country. He's too big, too strong, too fast for those guys."
Bailey started five games at tackle this season. But the last two he's played primarily at defensive end. He forced a fumble against Clemson and had three tackle sacks.
YOU VOTED... After nearly 2,000 votes, you have decided Allen Bailey is the Canes Mr. October. He edged out quarterback Jacory Harris with 32.8 percent of the vote. Harris was second with 29.1 and linebacker Colin McCarthy was third with 14.0 percent of the vote.
My favorite part of the polling process... checking out where some of the votes were cast. Among the places where voters chimed in -- Seoul, Korea; Quito, Ecuador; Stockholm, Sweden; Nieuwveen, Netherlands and Bahrian.
JAVARRIS RETURNS TO PRACTICE... UM coach Randy Shannon said running back Javarris James was back at practice Wednesday. It's still not 100 percent Baby J will be back in the lineup this week for Miami after missing the Wake Forest game with a "lower extremity" injury.
"He's going to add to the run game and what we do as an offense. Javarris is a veteran guy," Shannon said. "When you get him and (Graig) Cooper back and they're healthy - you got Damien Berry, Lee (Chambers), now you have guys you need for the long stretch."