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Five questions entering fall camp

Thursday morning at 8 a.m. the Miami Hurricanes will be back on the practice field and fall camp will be officially underway. So what are the big position battles and questions facing the team entering camp? I've got my top five.

Q-1: Can senior Kylan Robinson prove he can handle the middle linebacker position or will the Canes be forced to shuffle their lineup around?
Kylan Robinson- Robinson, a former high school running back at Tampa Chamberlain, has been coming along slowly over the past three years since moving over to linebacker. This season, his fifth at UM, coach Randy Shannon is expecting Robinson to fill a huge need at middle linebacker. Shannon said Robinson made huge strides in the spring. All indications are he will be given every opportunity to be in the starting rotation with senior Colin McCarthy and junior Sean Spence on the outside. But if Robinson gets hurt, or struggles, it will be very interesting to see what Shannon and defensive coordinator John Lovett decide to do. The Hurricanes are quite honestly thin at middle linebacker and loaded at outside linebacker. Shannon has balked at the idea of moving McCarthy inside to middle linebacker. But if Robinson struggles he might have no choice. That would open the door for junior Ramon Buchanon to get back into the starting lineup with Jordan Futch, C.J. Holton and a slew of freshmen backing them up. Of course, Kevin Nelson, a 20-year old true freshman from Gainesville, could make things easy and play like Ray Lewis from Day 1.

Q-2: Who will cement their place on the offensive line aside from Orlando Franklin, Brandon Washington, Joel Figueroa and Harland Gunn?
- The biggest questions on offense this season all relate to the big uglies and their ability to keep quarterback Jacory Harris off his backside. Outside of Franklin (27 starts), Figueroa (13 starts), Gunn (5 starts) and Washington (2 starts), Miami's offensive line will have a bunch of fresh faces vying for real playing time. Junior Tyler Horn, who played in seven games last season and saw time at center in four of them, has been penciled in as the fifth starter. But he'll be pushed by true freshman Brandon Linder. Figueroa, a guard for most of his career, has slid outside to right tackle (where Franklin made 25 of his 27 starts). He and Franklin figure to be backed up by Jermaine Johnson and Ben Jones, the two tackles who took the bulk of the snaps in the spring. Inside, Miami has freshman Malcolm Bunche and redshirt freshman Jared Wheeler as potential backups. The good news for UM: this might be their biggest offensive line in a long time. Outside of Horn, listed at 6-4, 295, every guy expected to be in Jeff Stoutland's rotation is over 300 pounds. That has to give Harris, sacked 35 times last season, some confidence.

Q-3: How long will it take quarterback Jacory Harris to get back to feeling 100 percent?
Jacory Harris- The first thing Harris told reporters when he met with them last month was that he still wasn't 100 percent healthy following thumb surgery. The Hurricanes will need Harris to be at his best if they hope to have success early on this season against a tough road schedule. UM receivers have said Harris has looked good during 7 on 7 work and is close to building his arm strength back to where it once was. Perhaps an even bigger question -- aside from the thumb -- is how much has Harris learned about throwing into double and triple coverages. Last week, Shannon shared a story on former roommate Michael Irvin's radio show painting a picture how Harris yelled at a teammate during the spring for throwing into triple coverage. Shannon said he informed Harris how he once did the same thing. After the practice, Shannon, Harris and offensive coordinator Mark Whipple went in to watch film. Shannon said Harris, who threw 17 INTs last season, realized what he had been doing. The Hurricanes certainly hope so. Although Harris has as talented a receiving corps as anyone in the country, he has to stop throwing the ball up for grabs. Otherwise, UM is going to have a tough time winning at Ohio State, Pittsburgh and Clemson.

Q-4: What kind of impact will new assistant Rick Petri have on the defensive line?
- The most talented deepest position the Hurricanes have on defense is their line. But getting more production from it this season will be a huge key to UM improving as a whole. Petri, a long-time veteran and former UM assistant from 1993-95, has been working hard to get some very talented players to grow. Sophomore defensive tackle Marcus Forston is first on that list. Forston, who earned a medical hardship for the 2009 season, has been the name teammates have been dropping over the past few weeks as the most improved. As a former five-star recruit from Miami Northwestern, Forston has all the ability to be a force in the middle, something UM really hasn't had in a while. Aside from Forston, there is also a lot of excitement surrounding the return of redshirt junior Adewale Ojomo, who missed the 2009 season with a broken jaw and could prove to be the perfect compliment to future first round pick Allen Bailey at end. Those three players along with junior defensive tackle Micanor Regis, junior defensive end Marcus Robinson, sophomore defensive end Olivier Vernon and sophomore defensive tackle Curtis Porter are viewed as elite prospects. Together they should help create a better front against the run and an improved pass rush. Last year, UM only tallied 24 sacks. That wasn't nearly enough considering the level of talent.

Lee ChambersQ-5: Who will emerge as the primary compliment to Damien Berry in UM's backfield?
- For the better part of past three years, it's been the Javarris James and Graig Cooper show in UM's backfield. Now, all signs are pointing to the bulldozing Berry being the man for the Canes. So who is going to be his Robin? There are definitely plenty of candidates: sophomore Mike James, redshirt freshman Lamar Miller, forgotten junior Lee Chambers, true freshman Storm Johnson and even Cooper, who from all indications will make a strong push to come back this season. James (5-11, 220) and Miller (5-11, 205) enter camp as the front runners to find work alongside Berry. Chambers (5-10, 195) is also in the mix and could prove to be the surprise. Despite fighting injuries throughout his career, he's averaged 4.5 yards a carry and shown flashes of having breakaway speed.

> NEW SHOW: Former WQAM UM sideline radio reporter Brian “The Beast” London will debut a weekly on-line show devoted to Hurricanes football tonight. The show will be aired on Wednesdays between 7 and 9 p.m. and can be heard on www.allCanes.com and www.sofloradio.com or on the allCanes iPhone application.

Comments

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Thanks Manny! Almost there!

whats the word on Seantrel? Did he make it on campus?

@oline help, he flew into Miami, and is currently at a hotel. He will be on campus tomorrow as per NCAA rules.

I hope Jacory works out because Robert Marve is getting tons of hype in the Big 10 media day. We jettisoned that kid without even giving him a chance.

Seantreal and Cain were the only two prospects to show up on wednesday. What about the others are they all heading to prep?

Yes he is on campus. Saw him today.

Manny when you gonna start taking questions again? I'm all the way up here in North Carolina and it's hard to get a lot of info. Those are some good questions and I believe, for one, that McCarthy should be the middle L.B.The dude is big enough and tough enough to play the positon. Another question you should of asked is do we have anyone that can cover a T.E. I know Clemson Wisky ate us up? Which one of those D.T's is going create havoc up front so we can get some sacks? You know we have a tendancy to let ordinary Q.Bs have career days because we don't get no pressure on them. As far R.Bs go peed kills and I look for Lamar to end up being the man, that's if Randy will give him a chance. Lastly can we for once win th Turn over war? We've been way to generous the last couple years

on q2 what about seantrell henderson?

what about Latwan? did he make it?

No way Robinson startes against osu. Not going to happen.

Latwan Anderson was suppose to report today but has ran into a snag with the NCAA clearing house. Seantrel is official - he'll wear #77 and checked in at 6-8 330 lbs today. As for the others: Jeremy Davis and Tavadis Glenn to prep school. Delmar Taylor to JUCO and no word on David Perry.

Manny is Latwan going tomorrow, have you heard from him today?

How many guys in total are heading to prep school?

who cares anyway.. I am sick of the hype on Henderson

oblock nation has a thread up for UM and osu and it is a little one sided . Can't wait to see these guy's in action.I have my tic's.

Please be quiet about Marve; the BROTHER couldn't cut it. Hint: BROTHER!!

I'm worried about jacorry's thumb- is this going to be another Marve (injured hand) issue? A less than 100% thumb is huge. You canhave Michael Irvin, Santana Moss, Reggie Wayne and lamar Thomas, and Andre johnson, but if youcant thrlow the ball with any zip, might as well pack itin!

This teamwill need to be a run first throw later, type. get 8 yds on 2 runs, then throw a screen. Then throw a safe paa on 1st down, then run 2 more times.

Damien Berry needs to carry the ball 20-30 times a game. Its his year to shine- why not? He is a senior!

canes junkie Robert Marve bolted on his own. Good luck to him. It will be very interesting to follow his success or failure. I believe that he was very over rated. great in HS so so in college and a never make it to the pro's unless he goes the way of flute. Zgoing to Canada first.

Yeah...last Marve reference from me. Who is Marve anyway?!?!?

Anyone catch College Football Live? They predicted a 10-2 record with only losses to Clemson and VT. I'd be a little upset with a win at the Ohio St and a loss to Clemson. But it would be our MO to win a big game a lose one we should win.

To me, the biggest question entering camp is: Who will start at CB opposite Brandon Harris? Van Dyke hasn't shown much so far and McGee lacks experience. Last season, Sam Shields played most of the time and was picked on a lot. The defense can't afford sub-par play there.

Canesjunkie, I too saw the same thing last night. I am not sure about that one. Brian Greasy is a local kid who went to Columbus. I think he was shooting more from the hip than giving his true opinion. Remember he also played for Michigan and we all know that Michigan hates Ohio State. Greasy said the "U" would win big at Ohio State, Pitt and GT. But loose again to VT and Clemson. With the 10-2 record we would get an outside bid for a BCS bowl game. Win big at Ohio State? Ohio State who are the Big Ten Champions beat a very good Oregon team in the Rose Bowl who are the Pac Ten Champs and were ranked ahead of Ohio State in that game. If the "U" wants to win the ACC they can't win their out of conference games and then lose two ACC games with VT and NC being in the same division. Trust me nobody will care if we beat up on Ohio State and Pitt if we finish third in the ACC again and fail to make the ACC championship game. GOOOO! CANES!

Manny: Franklin does not have 25 starts at right tackle.

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