A six-pack of Canes and Dolphins notes:
### For much of his freshman season, UM quarterback Brad Kaaya didn’t need to worry much about his blind side because of the presence of left tackle Ereck Flowers.
But less than three months from the season opener, there’s considerable uncertainty about who will start at left tackle.
Kc McDermott said today that he, Trevor Darling, Sonny Odogwu and new arrivals Jahair Jones and Tyree St. Louis are all sharing snaps at both left tackle and right tackle in voluntary workouts.
Jones arrived at UM in time for spring practice; St. Louis did not –-- he enrolled recently. Darling started five games at right tackle last season.
“I would like to be the starting left tackle,” McDermott said. We've had great left tackles over the years. It's a job everyone wants. It's a job that is going to be fought for over the fall camp….
“There's no coaches. When we're out there, we take charge. One day I'll play left, one day I'll play right. Somedays I'll switch in the middle of practice."
Taylor Gadbois started five games at right tackle last season, but his status remains very much in question because of a possible suspension; that situation has not been resolved, according to someone briefed on the situation.
In addition to a possible suspension, Gadbois also is working his way back from knee surgery last year. “He's worked very hard to come back from the knee injury,” McDermott said. “Once he gets back, he could be a big asset to this team.”
### It’s impressive to see the steps Kaaya has taken as a leader this offseason.
Here’s how McDermott explained it: “He's a great teammate, does everything he can for his teammates. I can call him at 2 in the morning, say 'Hey, Brad I need your help,' and he would be right there. He takes care of everyone on and off the field. He makes sure everyone is on time for meetings. If someone doesn't know what's going on that day, he sends it out [by text] to everybody within 20 minutes.
“Brad's not shy to express his opinions to anyone. He's not shy to tell anyone what to do. He does everything a great leader should do. He teaches the offense the way it needs to be taught. He takes control of the meetings. If there's a mistake said by a coach, he corrects it right away. If there's a mistake by a player, he corrects it right away. There's no hesitation with him.”
### Couple other things: Kaaya and McDermott both raved about what they’ve seen from freshman running back Mark Walton, who enrolled at UM last month… Kaaya said he’s 215 pounds: “I’m not Tim Tebow, running over any middle linebackers anytime soon. As long as I can move in the pocket well and do all our sprint-out plays.”…
Our David Furones has a story on Kaaya that will be up on the home page at some point tonight... Defensive tackle Walvenski Aime, who plays at Ft. Scott Community College in Kansas and attended Olympic Heights High in Boca Raton, today became UM’s 24th oral commitment for 2016. Then that total shrunk to 23 when Pahokee running back McArthur Burnett decommitted later this evening.
By the way, kudos to Kaaya, McDermott, Walton and several others for working with kindergarten-through-eighth graders on football fundamentals for two hours today at Gibson Park in Overtown. More than two dozen UM players and staffers are conducting four such clinics in Dade and Broward this week.
### A couple of notable comments from Dolphins offensive coordinator Bill Lazor’s appearance with Finsiders host Greg Likens today: He said Ryan Tannehill “wants to be great. He's willing to do what it takes to be great.”… He said “we want to call what our players do well. There will be some change in what we do.”…
On DeVante Parker: “It was clear very quickly that DeVante is extraordinary when it comes to catching the football. That showed up from the first day he got on the field. There isn't going to be a lot that DeVante can't do.”….
He said tight ends Jordan Cameron and Dion Sims “will be great complements for each other.”… On Lamar Miller, Lazor said “every time we’ve challenged him, he’s stepped forward.”
### Walt Aikens, who had some growing pains last season as a rookie, has thoroughly impressed the staff and appears to be one of the top four safeties, based on practice reps (with Reshad Jones, injured Louis Delmas and Michael Thomas).
“He’s had a good offseason program, number one,” Joe Philbin said. “His attention to detail I think is better than it was a year ago. A year ago, he was probably trying to find his way, everything was brand new to him. So he’s got some familiarity with the system now. His play speed looks better. He’s doing a good job defensively and also on special teams.”
### Dolphins receiver Jarvis Landry has made no secret of the fact that he wants to do more than play in the slot. And Ryan Tannehill said this week that Landry is “definitely more than that. He’s not a 4.3 (40-yard dash) burner guy, but he has all the tools to play outside and get open and we’ve seen that so far in OTA’s and we’ll see it during the season.
“He’s a guy that understands route running. He’s not a slow guy. People what to pigeon hole him as a slow guy, but he can run and he can get open.”
What’s more, “being able to move him around will create matchups all over the field,” Tannehill said. “And you pair that with the other receivers as well as our two big tight ends, you’re going to create matchup problems that it’s going to be tough for teams to matchup against.”
Check out Adam Beasley's story on the home page about the C.J. Mosley signing... Twitter: @flasportsbuzz