Day four from fall camp in Coral Gables is in the books, as Miami inches closer and closer to LSU on September 2nd.
Through the sweltering heat of South Florida and eventual downpour that ended practice early, offensive coordinator Thomas Brown had the quote of the day for me.
After practice, Brown told reporters, ““We have more talent than we have ever had at every single position; We have more depth than we have ever had with young guys that need to grow up in a hurry because they can help us from a depth standpoint.”
Brown is entering his third season as OC for the Hurricanes, and has had some success as well as talented players on the offensive side of the ball since he’s arrived.
In 2016, Brown’s first year, Miami averaged 34.3 points per game, compared to 28.2 ppg the year before. 2017, the Canes dropped back down to 29.1 ppg, but developed unknown players like Travis Homer and Chris Herndon.
We know what to expect from the Miami defense in 2018, so what makes the offense so special and talented in Brown’s eyes? I mean, something has really caught his eye for him to say that on the fourth day of camp.
Though people criticize him, Malik Rosier is Brown’s first returning starter at QB since Brown took over. We have seen videos of Malik missing guys early in fall camp, but most reports have been positive from him, and he seems confident when talking to the media. *fingers crossed
Lets take a look at his weapons.
The talent at the running back, wide receiver and tight end position is deep, and extremely dangerous, and arguably the strongest since Brown has been here.
Travis Homer will be the season-opening starting running back, followed by DeeJay Dallas, who will have his first full season to show people his true potential. In 2017, Homer averaged 5.9 yards per carry, while Dallas averaged 5.3 yards per carry.
Then you also have true-freshman Lorenzo Lingard and Cam’Ron Davis that can contribute.
We know about Ahmmon Richards, but who people are wondering about is Jeff Thomas, Mike Harley and Lawrence Cager. Between the three of them are touchdowns and talent, but not consistency. Cager averaged an incredible 14.8 yards per catch, though he only caught 16 passes.
Harley is someone who we don’t know too much of, but is expected to take over the slot position this upcoming fall. Jeff Thomas when consistent can be Rosier’s number two receiver, after averaging 22 yards per catch for just 17 receptions.
Then you add a healthy Ahmmon Richards, who’s a top 10 receiver in the country when 100%. One leg, Richards racked up nearly 500 yards in 2017.
The freshman at the receiver and tight end position is another reason why Coach Brown is ecstatic. Brian Hightower and Mark Pope are both guys who will no doubt see the field this season, but can they deliver? Thats the question.
Finally at tight end, you have Brevin Jordan and Will Mallory, who can be good, really really good. That being said......they have to prove it first, which is always easier said than done. Last year as a senior in high school, Jordan racked up over 1,100 yards and 13 touchdowns, while Mallory his junior year totaled 920 yards and 12 touchdowns.
So bottom line for Miami’s offense, the talent is there, the talent is always there for the Canes. Can the talent transition into the kind of offense we saw in 2016, or better, is the question.