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Gameday blog: Canes at Maryland

Al Golden and the Miami Hurricanes will open the season tonight at 8 at Byrd Stadium against the Maryland Terrapins on ESPN. You are invited to join The Miami Herald's live Gameday Blog and participate in our in-game discussion throughout the game.

Lamar Miller Herald Sports Writer Manny Navarro will be here to anchor the blog, answer questions and share his thoughts on both Twitter and our blog. Remember, inappropriate or obscene comments will not be tolerated and will be deleted.

Here are some news, notes and keys to the game before kickoff. FYI, the forecast is calling for a 90 percent chance of rain in the area.

- UM will be without eight suspended players for the opener including five starters on defense: DT Marcus Forston, DE Olivier Vernon, DE Adewale Ojomo, S Ray-Ray Armstrong and LB Sean Spence. Look for several freshman and fresh faces to play a vital role in UM's defense.

- Sophomore middle linebacker Jimmy Gaines, one of three non-freshmen making their first career starts (cornerback Mike Williams and defensive tackle Darius Smith are others), has the responsibility of calling plays with Spence out. Gaines, a standout throughout fall camp, will have to show leadership beyond his years for the Canes defense to have a good day.

- With three starters out on the defensive line, expect to see a lot of freshmen Anthony Chickillo, Olsen Pierre, Jalen Grimble and David Perry -- the second-team defensive line. Chickillo has shown in practice he's physically strong enough to battle with college-caliber players. But it's questionable how all the freshman will do in their debuts.

- UM produced two sacks and two quarterback hurries on Maryland quarterback Danny O'Brien, the ACC Offensive Freshman of the Year, in last year's 26-20 come-from-behind win last year at Sun Life Stadium. O'Brien finished a mere 9 of 28 for 134 yards, 1 TD and 1 INT thanks to some solid pass defense. UM had eight pass breakups in the game, seven by the secondary. With safety Vaughn Telemaque the only returning starter back from last year's game -- and questions abound at corner -- it will be imperative for the Canes to create pressure on the quarterback and help Brandon McGee, Mike Williams and freshman Thomas Finnie ease in. Maryland, by the way, finished second in the ACC in points scored last season with 32.3 a game. The Terrapins bring back just five starters on their offense, but O'Brien and three starters on the offensive line are among them.

- Offensively, sophomore Stephen Morris will get the start in place of the suspended Jacory Harris. Of course, last year Morris rallied UM to victory versus the Terps by tossing a 35-yard TD pass to Leonard Hankerson with 37 seconds left to play. But before his final drive when he went 4 for 4 for 60 yards and a touchdown, Morris struggled versus the Terps, going 14 of 26 for 226 yards and 2 INTs. New offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch has geared the team's offense for Morris and Harris to check down and make safer reads. Expect UM's tight ends, which didn't make a catch last season against Maryland, to be much more involved.

- Two players who can take a lot of pressure off Morris are running backs Lamar Miller and Mike James. Both had big contributions against the Terps last season. Miller ran for 125 yards on 22 carries and a touchdown and had two catches for 20 yards. James had 10 carries for 51 yards and a touchdown.

- UM has new players at three key special teams positions: sophomore Dalton Botts will handle the punts, junior Jake Wieclaw will handle field goals, extra points and kickoffs, and freshman Phillip Dorsett will return punts.

> PREDICTION: On most days, I would take Miami's talent over Maryland's talent. But in this case, the Canes are playing shorthanded -- very shorthanded --  on defense. Only three players who started in last year's win over the Terrapins (Nicholas, Telemaque and Buchanan) are scheduled to start in this year's game. The big losses for me are Vernon (sack last year vs. Maryland), Spence (3 tackles) and Armstrong (5 tackles, INT). It's not that I don't think UM's defense can step up and answer the bell. I think they will play inspired. But you are asking a lot from a lot of guys making their first starts playing on the road, in bad weather conditions and in a hostile environment. There are bound to be lapses and mistakes. I think we'll see a big night from Miller and James again. But it probably won't be enough. Maryland 26, UM 24.

Comments

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ill never read another manny article or post if that outcome is true..... just plain jinxed U s.......

We've got this.

Let's go

Bad time for a mistake.

same bs

same bs

Done... Lucky if this team goes .500

They played well...I think last year's team would've gotten blown out.

Same sorry team QBs suck and defense is soft losers , I hate to say it but hurricanes lucky to win 7 this yr and turnover and penaltys---- coach talks a good story but hasnt changed a thing...... but this yr is a loss... My canes are PATHETIC!!!!!! GOD IM TIRED OF WATCHING LOSERS!!!!!!! Im sick at my stomach damn these guys

Tallycane you really dpnt know a lot about football do you

I hope all you Jacory haters enjoy eating your crow cause Morris just isn't starting caliber. He just doesn't have any big play ability, none. Even last year it was the play of the running backs that helped Morris. If Jacory can limit the interceptions which I believe were cause by poor play calling then we need him back. If Morris wins the starting job this season might as well be over.

Yikes, I may have to take back my third comment. Morris totally telegraphed that pick 6. This is going to be a long season...

Posted by: Dave

Jacory is horrible. Morris throwing a pick doesn't equate to Jacory being good.

If anything, every minute Jacory played last year hurts is experience Morris didn't get experience.

Blame the defensive players who were out, not Morris.

Dave noodle arm could not have held us in the game. Morris made some great throws. We should have run it more.

Folks, the truth of the matter is that NOTHING is "about the U."

Nothing.

Agree with you Keith and Boston, play calling was terrible @ the end.

still a lot of penalties and turnovers, nothing different from this team;
considering our offense should have had an advantage to Maryland's defense... but none the less Miami offense = 3 turn overs. Not to mention Miami's pass defense was shredded. Another painful start to season.

i doubt with the other players we would have stopped that offense. golden got outcoached. edsel is a great coach. it showed tonite. hopefully golden will grow into the job. dont forget, the best coach at UM, JJ, lost 5 games after the 83 championship. give this guy a chance. hopefully the ncaa wont kill all hope. go canes.

canes dont have a QB they have 2 wannabes turn overs , delay of games , pathetic little league mistakes, they looked worse than last yr, same thing thou penaltys when we needed yards , turnovers for 14 points for the other team--- we have to lead the country in scoreing for the oppisition OMG just hand out the death penalty..... sick of watching this sad display and have to listen to people all day about how my canes SUCK.... need a new team to root for, miami has long past bye.

Jacory lovers know this....he's a senior and he still can't beat Morris out.

And he apparently like to go clubbing for free after a loss.

All you haters need to understand what this staff has had to deal with the past couple of weeks. Let them do their jobs. They have to change the culture of a program and it does not happen overnight without "his" players who obviously feel entitled to things. We will be fine and they will win.

Bottom line 3 turnovers equal 13 points and the D was very suspect

Irrelevance

IT'S A CANE THING

And we all understand

this team got almost 100 yards on hitch plays and on the most important play of the game you move corners up and and they get burnt for 52 yards. 9 penalties endsal said it right the game should have been over with before it started. coaching was terrible 4 turnovers by offense. as a matter of fact cansjunkie miami won that game last year with a lot of bs calls.

PEOPLE THAT WAS MARYLAND. WE HAVE MORE TALENT, NO REASON. TO LOSE.

DEFENSE WAS GARBAGE....NO EXCUSES

Welcome to the GOLDEN era! Wow, so much hype, very little results. I understand the missing players, but the penalties, failure to make adjustments at halftime with our defense, and playing man coverage late in the game with McGhee, without a pass rush...please. We have falling like a rock in a deep ocean; losing to a Maryland team with a scrub QB? We are awful. As for those calling for J12 to be benched, Morris is not ready to be the starter. How many times can you telegraph a pass without getting it picked? He must have telegraphed 95% of his passes; a strong arm will not overcome a better team's defense when telegraphing any pass. Bring back J12 an put some pressure on the QB.

There is no defensive talent on this team. And Maryland is not a good team.
We are going to get spanked next week.

To think that this yr would be any different...only a fool would believe Miami will EVER be anything remotely close to a bcs team!! Golden must have really miscalculated his coaching staff if he thought he could correct Miami's turnover problems! Morris & Harris ain't sh!!, Never will b sh!! !!!!! must also give a shout out to our corners...not really effected by suspensions but still as horrible as what we've been accustomed to the last couple yrs!!

and... QB competition reopens after that ending.

Fisch, needs to teach Morris, how to get rid, of the ball.3 areas that needs work, penalties, turnovers, and pass defense. Morris, didn't look comfortable in the pocket.

I hope Spence, Vernon, Forston and Ray Ray really enjoyed their dinners, hotels, boat trips and prostitutes because if they play this game, we DESTROY Maryland.

We will now have to beat FSU and VT to POSSIBLY get into ACC champ game. A tall order.

I am so mad right now....


With that said, we have a GREAT coaching staff and our guys were ready to play. I PRAY Golden says for along time.

Who's picking their nose now, Noel Beres? This is one bad team, and Manny called it right on target.

the one thing some of u pathetic cane fans are good at is making excuses. much of the same this year.

D wasnt suspect "THEY SUCKED" could only play defense when they has a end zone to shorten the field. and turnovers man what more can you say, penaltys and turnovers = losers and the canes seem to still own thoses 2 areas, wow and I waited 8 months for this BS Im as stupid as the other believers : ( sad day knowing this is a 500 team at best

Harris start next week.

Some of you are judging this team on one game? Let the season play out before you pass judgement on the coaching staff.

I agree the defense could've been better, but we were in it in the end. We could've gotten blown out in the first half.

maryland fans didnt even run out on the field. i wonder why?

DaU

hahahahahaha

Classic Miami, too many penalties...

wqt U Lose by ?

God, plesase ... Maryland was better ?

Arty. ho;;a

.

the excUes ?

No sense letting Miller just keep running up the middle since it worked just about every time.
Why complicate things--only brings about more confusion for Canes QB-just hand off the freaking ball and get out of the way.
ONly improvement over last year was Kicking game defense-really good coverage. Otherwise just mass confusion on offense when getting away from the simplest plays

Posted by: Keith

You were expecting to go undefeated? I hate to break it to you, but we're playing an even better team on Saturday.

was a huge believer in golden...but d@mn...where to start??

1. no adjustments to a bubble screen
2. no pass rush... no blitzes to compensate
3. piss-poor clock management at the end of the half...no sense of urgency
4. way too conservative, even with the suspensions in mind.
5. where are the tight ends that golden loves?
6. still cant tackle.
7. the delays of game where on the coaches... offense wasnt getting out of the huddle until 12 secs left on the play clock.
8. no adjustments on D
9. penalties...penalties...penalties
10. OUTCOACHED

again U lose ...

que ?

v tOSU - destroyed
v FSU - destroyed
v ND - destroyed
v Wiscy - destroyed
v - USF - destroyed
v - MD - destroyed

let those coaches go endsal had their number like he does most of the time. i could see the defense not doing well but the offense lost the game let them go. Majority of the fans on here dogged jacory and he didnt even play and you are still making excuses for golden. please stop it. everyone saw that we were out coached.

You people saying this is this the same team all over and another same ol same ol season hey how about you let the season play out before judging on the first game

Wow! Why would the defense be 1 on 1 with under two minutes to go? Stupid!

Assign blame here....

DT Marcus Forston, DE Olivier Vernon, DE Adewale Ojomo, S Ray-Ray Armstrong and LB Sean Spence

And precious Jacory who is such a great QB.

After 20 yrs, I'm done watching these pathetic turnover prone/penalty ridden Miami teams play live anymore!! I will get some Internet updates & read about it in next mornings paper. Why waste my time on a losing culture that just doesn't wanna change!! All talk Golden & staff, Randy & Coker could've gotten those results!!

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