Stephen Morris starts us off again today, coach Golden said he looked ok, and should be fine to play this weekend. He said since the injury is a bone bruise so that there is pain, but structurally Morris's foot is fine. Center Shane McDermott was back at practice today with no restrictions. Golden said Shane looked good, he was wearing the white 2nd team jersey today in practice but, I would expect both him and Jared Wheeler to see a lot of action this week at center. The hamstring injury of RB Edwardo Clements may keep him out of the game, it will be a down to the wire decision.With that in mind freshman Walter Tucker (a player that they were hoping to redshirt) will see playing time on special teams and as a back up in the running game. Jermaine Grace is still dealing with an oblique injury, but today Al Golden said he "should be good."
Golden had high praise for the offense Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson has put together. He shared the annual concern about the defense staying gap sound and not giving up the big runs. He also said that the new GT QB Vad Lee offers up a new challenge with the way he is able to throw the ball (something that GT isn't really known for), and that Miami cannot just focus on the run or they will get beat deep. Golden spoke again about how freshman CB Corn Elder is doing a great job playing the role of Vad on the scout team.
A few curious eyes were raised today at practice when Duke wasn't in his usual first team orange jersey. When asked about it Golden had a simple answer, Don't fumble away the ball inside the 5-yard line. Golden put it simply
"I feel no different than you guys feel."
He called it a careless mistake that goes against what they teach. It's Randy Duke Johnson so as coach said, he's got a ton of good saved in the bank. This wont be any long term type of change or cause of loss of carries. It was a good coach doing a bit of good coaching, not to mention Dallas Crawford has been doing his fair share of work to make a case for the orange jersey. No, I don't think Dallas is better, just saying that he has been impressive and that he's shown a knack at being a good short yardage back.
Speaking with offensive line coach Art Kehoe, it seems like Jared Wheeler took full advantage of his time starting. He graded out highly in his two starts and will see a good chunk of playing time going forward even though the starter Shane McDermott is back. Golden mentioned "Hotwheels" in the press conference and while he called him by name he did say that he was playing at a starting level and was solidly the 6th or 7th lineman.
Kicker Matt Goudis couldn't have had a better start to his season going a perfect 25-25 ( nearly having his leg fall off against SSU) on extra points. He's done great on FGs as well going 2-3 missing on his last attempt against USF. I asked coach how he has responded to missing his first ever kick and Golden said he's been kicking well and accurate in practice, so he's been doing fine. Golden was also asked about if he ever thought about getting Goudis more FG attempts toward the end of games and he said he actually had wanted to but had to take the score into account and didn't want to seem like he was running it up against an in-state school like South Florida.
Art Kehoe does awesome things because he's Art Kehoe. That being said he continued that today when he was talking about the importance of the ACC games. He brought up the fact it has been like a decade since MIami has joined the ACC and they haven't won or played in the title game so that should be all the motivation they need. He also danced a bunch during practice and that y'all was magic.