The Miami Hurricanes football coaches have a good issue on their hands. Incumbent quarterback Malik Rosier is a redshirt senior with fourteen starts under his belt and eleven of them victories. Rosier has beaten Notre Dame, Florida State, and Virginia Tech. Rosier’s play in the clutch was a breath of fresh air after three seasons of Brad Kaaya. However, Rosier isn’t the only talented passer in Coral Gables and many are excited about the prospects of young freshmen quarterbacks N’Kosi Perry and Jarren Williams. Let’s take a look at the two young quarterbacks and see who will get to split 1st team reps with Rosier this spring.
The Miami offensive roster is loaded with talent heading into 2018 and just needs a quarterback that can create scoring opportunities in 2018 against elite defenses like Florida State, LSU, and Virginia Tech. Whether it’s Rosier, Perry or Williams- they’ll have Travis Homer and Lorenzo Lingard carrying the football, and young talent like speedy receivers Ahmmon Richards, Mike Harley and Jeff Thomas, as well as incoming tight end Brevin Jordan who should get immediate playing time.
Tale of the Tape
N’Kosi Perry is a highly talented young man with a lanky frame and a beautiful deep ball. Perry led his Ocala Vanguard squad to ten wins as a senior and was named the FHSAA 6A Player of the Year. Perry didn’t enroll early, which put him behind the 8-ball to compete with Malik Rosier for the starting quarterback job in 2017. Heading into March and spring practice Perry has a year of learning the playbook and working with the scout team. Perry was listed as the back-up quarterback heading into the Orange Bowl against Wisconsin which gave Evan Shirreff’s the green light to transfer out of Miami.
Perry has mobility and great ball placement on deep throws. While we haven’t really seen him perform since arriving in Coral Gables, his senior tape didn’t show a ton of zip on the football or variety. His tape didn’t show him making college-level reads or playing in a college level offense. His high school experience was out talent’ing his competition. That’s true of many high school student-athletes, and especially quarterbacks.
Perry was the 199th rated player in the country in the class of 2017 as a four-star prospect with a 9.2 composite ranking from 247 Sports.
Jarren Williams comes to Miami from Central Gwinnett High School in Georgia. Coach Mark Richt poached Williams from his old backyard only 45 minutes from the UGA campus. The Bulldogs pulled in Justin Fields, also from Georgia, and Miami was able to bring Williams down to Florida. Williams is more compact than Perry standing at 6’2 and 205 pounds. When he rolls out and throws he reminds me of Baker Mayfield. Williams threaded the needle in his highlight tape and put some balls into windows that will close much quicker at the college level. Where Perry’s tape showed too many fades, Williams’ tape has more variety showing he can make a multitude of throws and reads.
Williams also played in a national showcase game as he’s considered a blue chip prospect. Williams was a member of the Elite 11 along with Fields and Trevor Lawrence (Clemson) who were the top two rated players in the country in 2018. Williams was the 77th rated player in the 2018 recruiting class. Williams had a 9.6 composite ranking from 247 Sports as a four-star quarterback.
Don’t forget Cade Weldon. Weldon stands at 6-3 and 205 pounds as a three-star quarterback from Jefferson High in Tampa, FL. Weldon was rated an 8.5 by 247 Sports’ composite ranking as a 600th ranked player in the country. Weldon has less mobility but great zip on his throws and has to overcome some alleged off-field issues to break back into the race for Rosier’s spot as the starting quarterback.
With the QB’s having equal ability at this point, Coach Richt will be looking for whichever passer has a stronger mastery of the playbook and the leadership skills to drive the ball down the field on a consistent basis. Miami suffered through far too many three-and-out situations in 2017 and accuracy, ability to make a read, and leadership will be the key to becoming the ‘Canes starting QB.
Verdict: Perry starts off splitting first team reps with Rosier but Williams challenges him and they all take a first team series during the spring game in 2018. This competition will go into fall camp without a clear cut starter. But Coach Richt will have to come to grips on a quarterback quickly because Miami takes on LSU not an FCS doormat on September 2nd in Arlington, Texas.