We’re officially less than a week away from the Hurricanes starting their spring practices, and we couldn’t be more excited. Since the horrendous finish to the 2019 season, and now the additions of new players and also coaches, Miami fans are itching for the Canes to get back out on Greentree.
Good morning Canes fam! 23 days till spring practice starts for Miami, can hardly wait pic.twitter.com/viztkCYGzA— Mamba Marsh (@hurricanesmarsh) February 6, 2020
Second year head coach Manny Diaz has once again managed to create a buzz here in the offseason surrounding his program, so let’s take a look at some of the biggest stories heading into spring ball.
- First and foremost, I believe the biggest thing to watch is new offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee and how his system will look, even if it’s just spring practices. Lashlee’s hire has been the most important move made this offseason, as he’ll bring his successful spread offense to Coral Gables, hoping he can introduce Miami to the 21st century on offense.
“We’re gonna get our swag back on offense.” I’m ready to die for Rhett Lashlee pic.twitter.com/f58A9Dh775— Mamba Marsh (@hurricanesmarsh) January 15, 2020
How will Lashlee’s offense look with the Hurricanes? Are we going to see more air-raid concepts he ran at SMU, or instead a power-spread look he had at Auburn? I believe, and I'm not alone, Lashlee has the potential to be one of the best hires that UM has made in a long long time.
Canes OC Rhett Lashlee on why he came to Miami: "I was in a really good situation ... but when you look at it, it's the University of Miami. I'm not numb to the tradition of what's been done here and what can be done here."— Christy Chirinos (@ChristyChirinos) February 5, 2020
Says being a part of Manny Diaz's staff was key, too.
2. Moving on, will grad-transfer quarterback D’Eriq King live up to the hype and become the guy Miami’s been looking for at that position? What are we going to see from him in the spring? The former Houston Cougar comes to UM with well-deserved optimism, as he’s been perhaps one of the most electrifying college QB’s in the nation the past couple seasons.
.@UHCougarFB's D'Eriq King now has a pass TD and rush TD in 15 straight games, breaking Tim Tebow's previous record (14) for the longest streak in FBS history.— ESPN College Football (@ESPNCFB) September 20, 2019
No other player has an active streak longer than 3 games. pic.twitter.com/gDhbXaPmjj
Can King clearly separate himself from the other Miami QB’s, or will Tate Martell or N’Kosi Perry make a surprise push for the starting job? What everyone is hoping from King right from the start, is to see the consistency that the Canes QB’s have been without for too long.
Daily reminder that D’Eriq King is incredible at football and also is a Miami Hurricane pic.twitter.com/BERiD1OEgQ— Mamba Marsh (@hurricanesmarsh) February 7, 2020
3. Another story to pay attention to, newly hired chief of staff Ed Reed, how much will we see of him throughout spring practice? How involved is he going to be with the team on a day-to-day basis?
Ed Reed's message to recruits and their parents: "If you don't want to compete, don't come here. Not while I'm around."— Tim Reynolds (@ByTimReynolds) February 5, 2020
4. Fourth, who’s going to breakout for the Hurricanes in the spring? There’s several positions that are riddled with injuries but also inexperienced players, linebacker, wide receiver, just to name a few. Last spring, we saw the emergence of guys like Gregory Rousseau and Will Mallory, even Zion Nelson made a name for himself.
I think Greg Rousseau has 7,543 sacks in 4 spring scrimmages.— rOmaN (@Romancane) April 8, 2019
Need this man healthy for the season because if he is........ #TNM
So in 2020, are we going to see a true freshman make an immediate impact in spring, challenging older players for depth chart positions? Or, instead watch a veteran start to live up to his hype? If you were to ask me, my spring ball breakout players are going to be Jeremiah Payton, Larry Hodges and Avery Huff.
Avery Huff gone be our best Lb this upcoming season— Terminator X (@monstaX) January 12, 2020
5. And finally, how is this team, coach Diaz, this program, what’s going to be different from 2019? Obviously the regular season doesn’t start for another 196 days, but the road to bringing Miami back begins now. The Hurricanes had locker room issues last year, what’s the feeling going to be like in 2020? We’ll start to find out on Saturday.