Early morning practice today at Greentree Field. Coach Al Golden addressed reporters before the 9 a.m. session.
> On wide receiver Tommy Streeter, a player Golden previously said he wanted to get a better look at during spring practice: "Tommy is one of our most improved players right now. He did a nice job in the offseason and right now he's really starting to mature. I'm excited about the direction he's going. I'm not ready to annoint anybody yet. We haven't been in any of these scrimmages, but you can see, in what we're getting done everyday, the progress that certain players are making. Certainly, his trend right now is positive.''
> On the other players who have stood out to Golden that didn't play a lot last season: "[DT] Olsen Pierre is a guy right now that's making a move. So we're excited about him.
"The tight end group in general is a positive issue for us. Right now, obviously Blake [Ayles] didn't play for us. He's improved, Chase [Ford] has improved. Clive [Walford] is really doing a nice job now because he's getting to be a more physical tight end.
"I really like what receiver [Allen] Hurns is doing. I like the way he is preparing. Eduardo [Clements] we already talked about. I'm sure there are other guys. When you guys give me a question like that I always leave guys out. But those are the guys that jump out.''
UM STUDENTS, PROFESSORS: YOU'RE INVITED TO PRACTICE THIS TUESDAY
> Golden is allowing all UM students to attend the next practice, which begins at 2:15 p.m. Tuesday. UM students and employees that plan on attending practice that day (March 29) need to bring a valid Cane Card for admission. No video cameras will be allowed.
Gates to the Greentree Fields will open at 1:45 p.m. Golden was asked Saturday if there were any ground rules (other than no video cameras) students must adhere to if they attend practice -- just in case they want to distribute any reports of what they see. "I hope not,'' he said of the prospect of students relaying information from practice. "Again, we're all partners on it. Look, with the scrimmages it's going to be, whatever you see is in the public domain. So, that's kind of like where we're drawing the line. Hopefully when they come here -- it's a little bit more intimate, because they'll be walking around our field. That's a little different than watching a scrimmage. We just hope that they'll be courteous of that and respectful of that.
"We want the students here. It's a great opportunity for them at the end of the school day to come over here and watch the players and get to know the coaches and just get an inside look. It will be great for the students and hopefully, our faculty and employees to come over and watch us.''
GOLDEN TALKS ABOUT SEANTREL
Golden on a Seantrel Henderson update and the commotion over whether he wanted to transfer, etc. "Well, No. 1, you should talk to the young man about the commotion, because he's extremely happy here and he's excited to be here and as I said last week he has made an incredible amount of progress in the last two weeks. His weight is in the 340s now. He was probably close to 380 when he came back in January. That's not a young man that's despondent or disheartened or disenchanted. That's a young man that's working. And when you watch him play, he loves football. That's the one thing about Seantrel. He gets excited. The other day, Streeter made a great catch and he ran down there and that's great for our program that we have guys like that."
NOTE: Seantrel, who is 6-8, told us today he weighs 345 now. He said he "weighed 385 coming in last August,'' and his playing weight last season was "around 375.''
"All I would say to you is I'm excited about him,'' Golden said of Henderson. "The expectations with him are almost unrealistically high. But if he just learns to follow the process and doesn't have the ups and downs and just can ignore you guys, if you will, and the outside expectations, he's going to be a really good player. He's a really, really good kid. He's the kind of kid that is really easy to like, a really likeable kid. That's why his teammates think of him so highly.''
ANDREU SWASEY'S SON, ANDREW, IS IMPRESSING COACHES
Golden talked about walk-ons Saturday. Who has impressed him among walk-ons? "I can tell you this, [Andrew] Swasey (a defensive back and the son of strength-and-conditioning coach Andreu Swasey) is probably the guy that jumps out right now. He is the guy that, as we're sitting in meetings, we're saying, 'OK, we've got to get him on multiple special teams.' [Linebacker Erik] Lichter is another guy. We always talk about being ready for your opportunity, and next-man-in mentality and obviously we've had some injuries. We're a little bit depleted at the linebacker position right now. He gets an opportunity and he executes. He knows where to align, he knows how to execute, he knows what the plays are, he has studied, he is prepared.
"We're a little bit behind in the kicking game because of all the offensive and defensive installations but the heart of the spring is when we're going to focus on the kicking, starting today.
> On linebacker Kevin Nelson, and how he did his first day of practice last week: "He's doing good. Today he'll be in a helmet and then he'll be able to be in full pads with the rest of the team Tuesday. For us it's about being educators, and if there's any reason why a student is not with us it's to teach him something, it's to get him to grow, to learn, and I think he's done that. We're excited about having him return and we're anxious to see what he can do over the next three weeks.''
AND REGARDING ACADEMICS...
> On the players' academics, and in particular the offensive line having the lowest cumulative grade point average of all the position groups: "I'm sorry that you see that, but whatever is in the building is in the private domain, so if you've seen that..''
On that information having been tweeted by other people, including one former offensive lineman: "Yeah, well, those are all the things we're trying to work on here at the University of Miami, but we post it because we want everybody to know what the expectations are, and we want all the positions to be accountable to each other. Plus, we want improvement. It doesn't matter what your GPA was in the fall, we want to see improvement. That's the kind of culture we're developing, academically, socially and athletically.''
HERE'S WHO'S PEDALING ON THE REHAB BIKES
> Rehab/injury report: The guys who were pedaling on the rehab bikes today were CB Eduardo Clements, TE Asante Cleveland, DL Dyron Dye, OL Joel Figueroa, WR Aldarius Johnson (who wore what resembled a shin guard, from his ankle to the top of his right calf -- with the plastic guard part actually covering each side of his leg, as opposed to the front and back), and LB Kelvin Cain, who had a large black boot covering his left leg, and was limping.
--SUSAN MILLER DEGNAN