The Canes' first scrimmage of spring yesterday was open to media. What they're saying [read more here, here, here, here, and here]:
Jacory Harris was killing it. He went 17-for-17 passing until Vaughn Telemaque made a crazy one-handed, backward-reaching INT in the end zone on his last pass, meant for TE Daniel Adderly. Several sites noted that Jacory's throwing motion has been corrected into something more compact and he seems extremely comfortable and capable in Whipple's pro-set. Jacory says Whipple has been throwing 40 plays a day at them in practice to get them up to speed, and the team is at this point where they were in two-a-days last year.
- Speaking of Whipple (who is reported to have said upon being introduced at a UM function, "Happy to be here, and I plan on fixing everything that has gone wrong with your offense...thank you."), the recurring theme among scrimmage reports is that the offense is a MAJOR upgrade. Whipple is using all available weapons, the qb's are allowed to thrown downfield, and the tight ends are involved heavily. Attendees say it couldn't be more different than last year's offense (THANK GOD).
Randy Phillips positively destroyed Tommy Streeter with a hit that left Streeter on the ground for 30 seconds and seemingly wobbly even as the scrimmage ended.
Arthur Brown stuck Lee Chambers in memorable fashion at the goal line, getting a huge reaction from those in attendance. Brown is excelling as the second-team's middle linebacker. Chambers later suffered a separated/dislocated/is there a difference? shoulder but is okay.
Daniel Adderly, who nearly transferred and agreed to use this semester as a try-out, is having a great spring - he made several memorable plays including a TD catch in the end zone and winning a jump battle against DeMarcus Van Dyke.
- Early enrollees: All six took part in the scrimmage. Mike James continues to impress Randy Shannon: "He had some nice runs today. No, he doesn’t look like a freshman. He’s a smart kid, who’s picking up the offense well. We added some stuff this week in practice, and he might have had one little bust on it, but for the most part, he’s picking up the offense. He’s catching the ball well and running the ball good. It’s only going to make Javarris and Cooper a lot better. When you see those guys competing with a Mike James, it’s only going to make us a better football team." Brandon McGee returned aCannon Smith INT all the way, diving into the end zone for a score. McGee recently suffered a spiral fracture to a finger and will be out for six weeks after surgery to insert two pins.
Travis Benjamin was held out after a minor leg injury suffered in track.
- Graig Cooper threw a 45-yard TD pass to LaRon Byrd after receiving the ball on a swing from Jacory. Unfortunately, it was likely the best ball of the day not thrown by Harris - Taylor Cook and Cannon Smith have a long way to go.
- Oh, yes: the defense won by 1.