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Size, speed, moment wasn't too big for UM freshmen

You've heard it so much now, it's become cliche. 

Freshmen all across the country are asked what the biggest difference is between high school and their first college game. The responses are usually something like: "The game is a lot faster," or, "The guys are bigger and more physical," or "I've never played in front of so many people before."

But none of those responses came from the four freshmen I spoke to on Monday: running back Duke Johnson, cornerback Tracy Howard, safety Deon Bush and receiver Malcolm Lewis. About the only thing that really bothered them was the noise.

"You can't really hear," said Lewis, who was elevated to a starting spot in the team's latest depth chart released Monday after hauling in all four passes thrown his way -- including an 18-yard touchdown catch and run on Saturday.

"So, you have to know your hands signals. That was kind of a big adjustment. But I pretty much knew them. Since you can't hear the quarterback, you have to watch the ball for the snap. Yeah, everything is faster. But I was pretty much the same to me. I was kind of used to it."

Howard, Lewis' best friend and former teammate at Miramar High, echoed those sentiments. "Some people told me like it's a different game 'Those boys are going to be big and strong, faster. I mean, not really," Howard said.

"Sticking those guys were just like sticking guys in high school -- especially in terms of the size. What got me was the crowd noise. It was hard to communicate sometimes. In high school, you could talk, 'Hey watch this, watch that. Watch the slant route.' It's kind of hard to do that in college. A guy could be like 10 yards away from you, but he can't hear you. You have to see those checks with signals. You can't see motion sometimes either. You just got to signal it because it's kind of hard to hear."

What blew Johnson away? Seeing his mom in the stands -- in Boston.

"It was something that said 'This is college,'" Johnson said. "It was faster than high school, but really nothing that would blow me away."

Miami will obviously play in louder stadiums (there were only 39,262 fans at Alumni Stadium last weekend), but at least it's encouraging to see the leaders of UM's 2012 recruiting class and backbone of the future pretty much felt comfortable in their first college game. The moment was overwhelming. But it didn't overwhelm them.


> So what did Duke Johnson think about LeBron James' tweeting about him on Saturday? "Surprised. Excited. Everybody kind of laughed," Johnson said. "We just appreciated he took the time out to watch us, tweet about me."

> Johnson touched the ball 13 times on Saturday between kickoff returns, receptions and carries. Asked if he likes how he is being utilized in Jedd Fisch's offense -- especially in the open field, Johnson smiled. "I enjoyed that very much," he said. "I just like that he's using me in all the ways he can, all the possible ways the offense can. That's good. I like it."

> While the rest of the world might be surprised at how Johnson exploded in his first game, his teammates aren't. "I was expecting it," Lewis said. "I just wasn't sure when it was going to happen. I didn't know if it would be the first game, but I knew it would be quick. He's too good."

Said Howard: "Everybody knew it from practice really, but of course people are going to be surprised because that's his first game as a true freshmen. I really wasn't surprised. I already told people he would score two or three times [versus BC]. I've known him since we were young and I know what type of person and player he is. When you are always that humble, you're always going to have success."

> Howard said he also isn't surprised 12 true freshmen played in the opener. "I knew the guys I was coming in with. I knew the talent we were coming in with. We came in with an urgency that we're not going to be denied, came in competing, ready to play," Howard said. "We talked about it amongst each other. I'm not really too surprised."

As for the problems in UM's secondary, Howard said: "It could be fixed. It's not really major. It's not like we got beat in man-to-man. It's not like they outplayed us. It was just guys in the wrong spots. That's all it really was. You can't really like get mad at that. It's just the little things we have to fix and the things we know. But the game is going so fast and you got young guys playing, so you expect those things to happen."

How much zone did UM play? "We ran zone a lot, but towards the end of the game in the fourth quarter we started running a lot man," Howard said.


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"It's not like we got beat in man-to-man."



Tracking Florida's sevin D-1 Universities through the season


I wonder if KState know what's coming in there Saturday?

Collin Klein will once again dominate the Canes WEAK defense, he will run OVER the wimpy tacklers !!!

Was at the game Saturday and wanted to withhold comments until I had time to watch the replay. I believe the lack of coverage has to do with the fact that in practice, our defense is covering guys a lot faster than what BC had on the field. In other words providing TOO MUCH cushion. The encouraging thing was that no one got beat deep and that is what you would expect from very young DB'S and safties. As the game progressed, we did go more man and the coverage seemed better, however, even then, the cushion was too big at times. On to the LB'S, I am surprised that coach Barrow, doesn't have this squad playing better after another year under his belt. We really struggled picking up the back out of the back field and the TE. This is nothing new as we really struggled with the same last year.

This team will win more games than last year. I believe we will even get an upset or 2 but still lose an easy one based on inconsistency, going to stick with my earlier prediction of 8-4 with a small shot of 9-3 after watching last nights VT vs GT game. Watch out for next year, we are going to be really good!!

most of BC's third down conversions came while we were in that stupid zone... i hate it.

Collin Klein will once again dominate the Canes WEAK defense, he will run OVER the wimpy tacklers !!!
Posted by: Kstate4ever | September 04, 2012 at 06:55 AM
What a clown.

Collin Klein is a great QB, and The Canes will have some trouble containing him. But our D is good at keeping things in front of them, so no big plays. But KSU is not ready on D for this speedy, hungry,talented,young offense. They gave up over 400 yds to Mo State.

Great to be a CANE

Anytime you have 3 consensus high school All-Americans in the secondary (McGee, Howard and Bush) you should be confident playing man. I believe Vaughn Telemaque and Rayshawn Jenkins are also on some All-American lists as well.

@HurricanesFan man Vaughn Telemaque played like trash on Sat. So did Brandon Mcgee I saw them two miss more tackles than anything. And Brandon M dropped a pick in the 4th qrter. I can say this I was highly pissed with the Zone Defense. My thing is is this run the 4-3 or a nickle man to man. No zone need to be ranned until u come across a spread offense.

Fire the D-odonfreeee now... lets save the canes... the defense looked bad and can not afford to play like this again.

Noleliller. Watch all the offensive flow. Everyone would go left and throw back right. Or visa versa. They took advantage of youth and speed. It's a fairly simple fix based on the skills and enthusiasm of our players.

Nolekiller69 - yea, they got killed all of last year by little delays to fullbacks and tight ends, those coverages are just consistently completely blown with no defender within 10 yards. I can't believe they haven't fixed that.

On the plus side they blitzed a lot more than they did anytime last year. Didn't bring much pressure but at least they tried.

Miamiu fire yourself

Lmao@ itc

ltcdolphin, Hilarious! Funniest post ever!

Finally watched my DVR of the game. Duke is legit. His TD runs were huge and a big reason the canes won. A win on the road in college football is always big. Look at how many so called top 25 teams struggled at home against teams a lot weaker than BC. K-State is a big test. The D should get better. If not, then we can we start calling for the DC's head. They gave up a lot of yards but caused turnovers and played tough in the red zone. They need to do a better job defending passes to the TE's and RB's. I'm just happy S. Morris is now QB. Go Canes!!

I'm glad Va Tech beat Ga Tech - we have to get through both to win our division, might as well have to take down Va Tech while they're highly ranked.

K State got a good team. So does the Hurricanes. Last yr Miami got dominated up front because they didn't hit the weights hard. That's BS ain't happening this year buddy. We strong across the board and I have faith int he coaches to make the proper adjustments to beat the WildCats. I just want to see Kstate4ever pn the blogs when the U whoop his beloved team. LOL

Time to place Saturday's win in perspective. Johnson and Flowers had 1 game that exceeded all expectations--let's not rush to anoint either as "the next great one".

We need to see several more games before we can even estimate a trend on what they, and the rest of the new freshman, can achieve. Way too early to tell.

They beat BC. Great. So could Miami Northwestern and St Thomas.

As for K State, Klein is a beast and will be an important test to see how much more work the team as a whole needs. If the D line plays in Kansas like they did at Chestnut Hill, that offense is going to wrack up significant yardage.

Coaching staff doing a great job with the assets they have right now wrt depth, experience, and overall talent.

Let's see how best they can place the pieces in a position to execute this coming Saturday.

Go Canes!!!!!

Let's just be realistic.

UM '93

Well the Line on K Sate Game is out, we are a 7 point dog. I will be interested to see where it goes during the week. It would probably been 3 pts if we were home but still the underdog. This week will set how Vegas will see us the rest of the year or at least most of it. If we lose will will be an underdog in at least 5 to 6 games. What does that matter you say. I say it predicts the final record. This is a big game. I think if we are going to have a hope of 8-4 this year this is a game where we must get an upset, and I think we can.

Great post UM 93.

I keep reading people saying Klein is a beast. That guys stinks! That's like how people were saying Logan Thomas can be Cam Newton. Get Real! The guy is average at best we (UM) just always struggle against running QB's. For years scrambling QB's have given us trouble. I remember Klein picking up a 3rd and 20+ last year against us not because he was a "beast" but because our defense couldn't contain him in the pocket or tackle him. The guy is average we just need to tackle and contain. Shoot if Walford catches that pass on the goal line or Harris can get 1 yard we win the game last year against the "almighty" K-State. K-State (and Klein) are overrated.

These kids remind me of the 83' cane class with Alonzo, the Blades brothers, Michael Irvin, Melvin Bratton, Jerome. They came here to work hard, win, and lay down for nobody - even the veteran teammates. They have pride in their hometown and will be successful representing the "U". I'm not saying 3 rings but they will compete. There were a lot of good things to take from saturday's game, even though the D gave up too many big plays I am optimistic that that is the worst they will look all year. I'm puting my hard earned money on the "U" plus 7 at K-State, I wasn't too impressed by them last year, we should have beaten them and we're much better this year.

Ksu has no WRs and barely a RB in Hubert. He was completely overshadowed by Klein who isn't that much of a passer just a runner. That tells me that he's scared. He'll definitely not be passing as much as he did last season against us this year. I see VT losing his spot this week before the game to an underclassmen who will stick a shoulder into anyone coming across the middle. I loved that play of Deon Bush knocking the 5hit out of an Olineman from BC during Gunter's fumble recovery and run. That Olineman had 6inchs and 100lbs on Bush and he still stuck him into the ground. Perryman is twice the LB he was last year. He put hurt on everyone he hit against BC. I liked what our Offense did against BC and if they do the same thing against ksu they'll be fine. I want to see Morris go deep to Dorsett more than just once. I liked the hard work that James showed us in the BC game. He didn't have a "break-out" game but he went in there and went to work getting those short yard plays we needed and a few first downs. This game will be completely different from last year. Our Oline will blast through ksu's defense and Arthur Brown will get held up all day. He's the only threat on defense. Man I can't wait. LETS GO CANES!!!!!!


People, relax, it was only Boston College. I could see if it were Alabama.

@ keno...
Only an Alabama win will make you happy?...by that reasoning we'll have to stay in "relax" mode all year...

Nice win for the canes. Given our .500 record over the last few years, we owe it to ourselves to appreciate a nice win over a team we ALWAYS seem to have trouble with on the road.

KSU is well coached. Klien, although not spectacular, is a tough kid and runs their O pretty well.
I see a game very similar to last year, maybe add a TD or so to each team.


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