As we get into June and really start to feel the void that the off-season has put into our lives it is fun to countdown the days until it is back. Until we can tailgate in the Orange Lot West 32 at 7 am as we wait for the kickoff against Bethune Cookman. 91 days feels like forever but 3 months isn’t really that long.
I could go Darren Krein or Rod Carter here but I chose to pick #92, Damione Lewis’s back up for his freshman year, Matt Walters.
Matt Walters was one of 15 red shirts from the 1998 recruiting class.
As a red shirt freshman he appeared in every game as the back up to aforementioned Damione Lewis. He had 27 tackles along with 2 sacks that season/
In the 2000 season Walter’s recorded 32 tackles. He had a big game against Rutgers and caused a fumble that was recovered for a Canes touchdown. They beat Rutgers 64-6 that day to give them their worst homes loss since 1888. Oh yeah and went on to beat FSU the next week.
In 2001 Walters made one of the most memorable plays in Miami Hurricane history when he picked a pass off vs Boston College in the last few seconds. Yeah, the one that Ed Reed took from him to take 80 yards to the house to keep title hopes alive and well. A title the Canes would win handily vs Nebraska. He finished that season with 66 tackles which ranked 2nd on what we know was a loaded defense.
In 2002 for his last season he was recognized as the best Defensive lineman on the team by the coaching staff. He led the defensive lineman in tackles for the second straight year with 66.
He was also an academic All-American every year that he was at Miami.
Can our current #91, Gerald Willis, make this same article next year or 5 years from now? I don’t know but I will tell you that he was all the tools to do so. I am excited to see what Willis can do in his second year under Coach Kugliowski. Gerald is in the DL room which happens to be, in my opinion, our strongest unit going into the game that is only 91 days away. Barring injury I believe that Willis will be a big contributor in 2017.
Who do you think is the best player to ever wear #91 at the University of Miami? Keep the conversation going in the comments section.