University of Miami defensive end Steven Wesley visited Adewale Ojomo at the hospital Tuesday night -- not long after he had surgery to work on his broken jaw.
Wesley said the 6-4, 253-pound sophomore defensive end, who was sucker punched by a walkon Sunday in the team's lockerroom, is trying to stay positive after what teammates have described as an "unfortunate incident."
"I told him to keep his head up, stay focused and be in a good mood," Wesley said. "We were still clowning around. He's still in good spirits and stuff. I've been texting him everyday to make sure his mind is right. He's just saying what he can, appreciating the support."
Said defensive tackle Marcus Forston: "We just keep telling to stay positive, let things go. He's taking things slow, taking the surgery well."
UM coach Randy Shannon still hasn't acknowledged or addressed the locker room incident publicly other than to say Ojomo was injured "horsing around." But chances are Shannon may be more forthcoming tonight during WQAM's Hurricanes Hotline show. From what we've heard from team members, the walkon, a former offensive lineman at Miami Norland who joined the team at the start of fall camp, was kicked off the team shortly after the incident.
The loss is the second big injury to a UM defensive end thus far. Senior Eric Moncur saw a specialist for his groin in Philadelphia Wednesday, but has been on and off the practice field since camp began. It is unclear how long either he or Ojomo could be out. But both injuries could potentially be season-ending. Redshirt freshman Gavin Hardin is expectd to miss the season also, but wasn't expected to see major minutes anyway.
UM's strength defensively entering the season was its depth at defensive end. But that's obviously thinning. Welsey said he and sophomore Marcus Robinson are now the primary players rotating at left end and freshmen Olivier Vernon and Dyron Dye are getting most of the work on the right side. There are reports that Allen Bailey and Marcus Forston are seeing more reps at end now, too. But I was told by Forston he and Bailey are still getting the majority of their work at tackle. If any defensive tackles could move outside, it is Bailey and Forston.
A FEW MORE NOTES...
> The Canes will scrimmage for the second time this fall on Friday, but will be off Thursday and Saturday. Expect Shannon to talk about it Sunday.
> WEDNESDAY'S HIGHLIGHTS (Provided by UM's Sports info staff): Randy Phillips stood out in morning drills with a sack and pass deflection in 11-on-11 play... In a series of 15-20 red zone plays, the defense held the offense to just one TD (a Taylor Cook pass to LaRon Byrd for a 20-yard score)... Javarris James had a run and catch of more than 20 yards in the morning and followed it up by breaking off runs of 65 and 30 yards in the afternoon... Lee Chambers had a few runs of 10-15 yards in rushing drills... Sam Shields and Vaughn Telemaque had interceptions... Jacory Harris hooked up with Thearon Collier (twice), Jimmy Graham and Travis Benjamin for big gains during 11-on-11 work.