1) Dallas Crawford
A number of athletes who are ready to erase what was an abysmal season last year spoke to the media today. One of them was senior safety Dallas Crawford. Last year, Crawford began his trial at safety, and at times it was a difficult transition for him.
"I just didn't know the playbook as well as I should have. I was thinking too much," said Crawford. "I'm a complete safety now, I was learning last year."
I asked Crawford if there is any play in particular from last year that he still gets upset about, and he mentioned this missed tackle (time 1:44) that pretty much sealed a Louisville win at the beginning of the season.
Crawford, however, has used last year, much like other players such as Jamal Carter and Stacy Coley as motivation to succeed this year.
"I know we don't want to feel like we did last year," said Crawford. "That's why we're working so hard, we know we don't want to feel like that."
Crawford has been running with the first team throughout camp, and he expects to be there by the time the season starts. He did say that there are five guys (including freshman Jaquan Johnson) that could all start at that position.
2) Standish Dobbard
- The New Orleans native is ready to step up and be the man for Brad Kaaya as Clive Walford was for him last year. He's been working out extra with Kaaya after practice, working on his receiving and holding on to the ball.
However, he won't necessarily be the only man at TE. He mentioned three roles at TE: 1) The physical TE, which is him. 2) The speedy TE, which is Chris Herndon. 3) The high jumping TE, which is David Njoku.
- Dobbard played an instrumental role in bringing ex-Florida Gator and former high school teammate Gerald Willis to Miami.
"He looks up to me, you know I treat him like my little brother," said Dobbard. "I figured I'd get him here, look after him and make sure he stays good."
When asked about how tough it was to watch him struggle at Florida, Dobbard said that it was tough, but that he's a grown man and has to learn from his mistakes.
Dobbard says he always makes himself available to him.
"I treat him like my little brother you know, if he gets in trouble, it's on me."
- In happier news, Dobbard officially announced a couple weeks that his son Standish Travon Jr. is to be born on January 1st.
Dobbard says it's just the motivation he needed before camp started, and has also been asking teammates about parenthood advice, including his best friend Jamal Carter.
" He's gonna be the godfather for my son," said Dobbard. "He helps me out and talks to me a lot about how it's gonna be."
Dobbard says other players like Dallas Crawford and Herb Waters have reached out to him to get their help.
3) Joe Brown
- The redshirt freshman and Compton, California native was humble in talking to reporters today. Brown, who's been taking reps at both guard positions says as far as starting, it doesn't really matter to him, but he just wants to help the team.
Brown says he's also gotten his weight down since last year. He was at 335 lbs. last year and has dropped 15 lbs, making him a lot lighter on his feet.
- Brown says that playing for UM has been more than a dream come true.
"Miami was one of the first teams to respond to my highlight tape," said Brown. "A bunch of other schools started calling me like Oregon, Arizona, UNLV, but I didn't worry about those schools cause I was going to the U."
The 19-year old also has a big "U" tattoo on his shoulder, alongside some tribal designs as well
"This right here is permanent," said Brown. "I'm dedicated to the U forever."
- Coming from Compton, Calif. Brown's teammates assume that he's a thug, but he doesn't believe so.
"My parents raised me right," said Brown. "This is the path I'm taking. My "why" is to set a path for my three younger siblings."
- Al Golden mentioned that S Jamal Carter is on another planet right now in terms of how good he's gotten. He also called him a "bull dog," which I'm sure he appreciated.
- Malik Rosier spoke about different offensive schemes that have been used throughout practice. One of them being a four TE set. When I asked Dallas Crawford about the first time he saw that specific unit on the field, he said he was a bit confused.
"What's the check? What do we do with this?," said Crawford. "We don't know because we think it's a run, so you have to be on your P's and Q's."