We all were looking forward to seeing Seantrel Henderson out at practice for Day 2 of fall camp. At least I was looking forward to it, as I requested him for an interview.
But Seantrel was not at camp Saturday morning.
Taking Henderson's place Saturday at right tackle: Jonathan Feliciano, who is listed on the current depth chart as the first-team left guard. Feliciano, if you recall, played tackle during the season but was switched to guard in the spring.
Taking Feliciano's place at left guard: usual backup Jeremy Lewis.
Delayed flight? Coach Al Golden was asked.
Golden: "I have no idea what... again, when I told you guys Friday he'd be back... I have no idea what his schedule is, but I think he's supposed to arrive back today.''
Golden said Friday that Henderson did not attend practice because he was in Minnesota to attend the funeral of a friend. But he also said he'd be back for Saturday morning's practice session.
This wouldn't be more than a blip on the radar if there weren't a track record here. The 6-8, 340-pound Henderson, a junior, has been the subject of controversy a few times since he arrived at UM in 2010.
He was the 2009 USA Today High School Offensive Player of the Year, the only lineman to ever win the award.
He's polite and candid when we talk to him. We just don't hear from him very often.
Golden suspended Henderson the first weekend of spring practice in early March, 2012, for violating an undisclosed team policy.
Golden said during our one-on-one interview two weeks ago at the ACC Football Kickoff that Henderson was "absolutely not'' suspended after showing up "significantly late'' to the start of a summer session. "It's not a function of anything else in the summer other than missing class and being accountable to your teammtes and the university,'' the coach told me. He then went on to say that Henderson was "doing great'' despite being punished internally for arriving late.
Golden reiterated during our interview that Henderson was showing "a sense of accountability on his part that he hasn't displayed or exhibited in the past, and I think it shows maturity and it shows signs of adhering to a process, a discipline. I'm hopeful.
"We're like everybody else on the planet when it comes to Seantrel,'' Golden said that day. "We want to maximize his ability, we want to maximize his talent and give him the skillset, the discipline, the strength, the explosion to be the type of player we know he can be.''
Hopefully he'll be back tomorrow. Either way, I received word from UM that he will not be available for interviews until further notice.
CORTEZ KENNEDY A PRO FOOTBALL HALL OF FAMER!
Way to go Cortez! Couldn't have happened to a nicer guy.
He will be officially enshrined at 7 p.m. Saturday (ESPN and NFL Network).
I remember nearly four years ago when I called Cortez Kennedy to ask him about his reaction to learning he was one of five UM greats selected for the UM Football Ring of Honor.
"I couldn't believe it,'' Kennedy, a former defensive tackle, said by phone from his Orlando home. "I'm in the Seattle Seahawks' Ring of Honor, and this has even more meaning to me. Just think of all the UM greatness that came before and after me.''
Kennedy, now 43, was the MVP of the Hurricanes' 1989 national championship team.
"I respect every player that came through the U, because we sacrificed so much on and off the field,'' he said. "It was hard for me to even tell some of the former players I was selected, because so many of them deserve to be in that ring.''
Kennedy registered 58 sacks and scored one touchdown on a fumble recovery in his 11-season career with the Seattle Seahawks.
I'm sure he'll cherish the moment Saturday, and all Canes Fans will be right there with him.
SUSAN MILLER DEGNAN