2008 Miami Hurricane Preview
Miami RB Javarris James
How patient can Miami be? While there's a good nucleus of players to build around, like RB Javarris James, it could be tempting to throw several true freshmen from this year's great recruiting class to the wolves. Check out the CFN Preview of a Hurricane team that should be better, but should still be a year away.
2008 CFN Miami Preview |
2008 Miami Offense Preview
2008 Miami Defense Preview
2008 Miami Depth Chart
2007 CFN Miami Preview |
2006 CFN Miami
Interested in blogging
about ACC football?
Head coach: Randy Shannon
2nd year: 5-7
Off. 19, Def. 28, ST 1
Lettermen Lost: 21
Best Miami Players
1. RB Javarris James, Jr.
2. RB Graig Cooper, Soph.
3. LB Colin McCarthy, Jr.
4. DE Eric Moncur, Sr.
5. OT Jason Fox, Jr.
6. OT Reggie Youngblood, Sr.
7. DT Antonio Dixon, Sr.
8. LB Darryl Sharpton, Jr.
9. S Anthony Reddick, Sr.
10. WR Sam Shields, Jr.
CFN Prediction: 7-5
2008 Record: 0-0
Sept. 6 at Florida
Sept. 13 OPEN DATE
Sept. 20 at Texas A&M
Sept. 27 North Carolina
Oct. 4 Florida State
Oct. 11 UCF
Oct. 18 at Duke
Oct. 25 Wake Forest
Nov. 1 at Virginia
Nov. 8 OPEN DATE
Nov. 13 Virginia Tech
Nov. 20 at Georgia Tech
Nov. 29 at NC State
CFN Prediction: 8-4
CFN Record: 5-7
Sept. 8 at
Oklahoma L 51-13
at North Carolina
Florida State W 37-29
L 19-16 OT
Virginia Tech L 44-14
Nov. 24 at Boston Coll L 28-14
Head coach Randy Shannon got a mulligan for going 5-7 in his first
season, but the honeymoon is already over as he turns the corner and
begins heading into Year 2.
wasn’t just that the program is down by comparison to the unattainably
high standard it set for two decades, it’s that this has become just
another program and just another team. Miami can say all it wants that
it’s Miami and is about to get back the swagger and the attitude,
but it isn’t happening.
Shannon’s first goal
was to change the mindset back to being the biggest bad boys on the
block, and that hasn’t happened yet. That only comes from having a good
team, and that’s about to kick in with a great recruiting class ready to
change things around. At least that’s the hope.
Other teams have invaded the “State of Miami” by plucking a few choice
players here and there that normally would’ve been a lock to go to Da
U., but more than that, it’s that the players in place aren’t developing
like they should, and worst of all, they’re not showing up to play in
How does a team lose 48-0 to Virginia in the final game in the Orange
Bowl? How does Miami, the school of Heisman quarterbacks, a jaw-dropping
array of NFL running backs, and high-octane offenses finish 110th
in the nation in offense and last in the ACC in passing? Attitude and
The Hurricanes need to develop a consistent playmaker at quarterback and
revamp the defense, two areas that never let the program down during the
glory days. Very few positions won’t be open to competition this summer
as parts of the last two recruiting classes will be infused into the
depth chart. Shannon built a fortress around Dade County this past
February, assembling one of the nation’s best hauls of young talent, but
now he and his staff need to prove they can coach as well as they
Although this latest recruiting class has brought a spark and some
positive national pub back to the program, it’s not likely to have a
profound impact on the win total in 2008. Shannon is likely to get the
‘Canes back to the postseason, but with so much uncertainty on both
sides of the ball and a minefield of a schedule, they’ll fall a short of
a Coastal Division crown.
What to watch for on offense: The last time Miami started a
freshman under center, Bernie Kosar was a teenager on campus in the
1980s. It’ll happen again this year as Robert Marve tries to reverse a
recent trend of inconsistency at quarterback and a last place ACC finish
in passing. He’ll be surrounded by 10 players with something to prove,
particularly RB Javarris James and WR Sam Shields. James is looking to
bounce back from an injury-riddled sophomore season and a drop in
production. Shields has a world-class blend of speed, burst, and leaping
ability, but needs to put it all together to finally reach his enormous
What to watch for on defense: The Cane defense will be looking to
rebound from a November collapse that saw it sink to an un-Miami-like 10th
place ACC finish in scoring D. While LB Colin McCarthy and DE Eric
Moncur will be the catalysts, new coordinator Bill Young will also be
weaving in a handful of younger players, including blue-chip true
freshmen Marcus Forston, Arthur Brown, and Sean Spence. Keep an eye on
sophomore DE Allen Bailey, a converted linebacker who has torn it up in
the offseason and possesses a ridiculous combination of size, speed, and
The team will be far better if… Marve doesn’t play like a
freshman. Heck, this is Quarterback U., and it’s about time Miami
starts playing like it. The defense will be better and the running game
is in good hands, but the Canes can’t afford another season averaging
just 169 yards a game through the air. The
burden falls on the rookie quarterback and a group of receivers that’s
been better in shorts than in pads.
The Schedule: The Canes will know just how much better they've
gotten this off-season in a big hurry. After a warm-up against
Charleston Southern, road dates at Florida and Texas A&M could either
set the tone for the season or show just how far the program still has
to go. On the flip side, the big Coastal showdown against Virginia Tech
is at home, missing Clemson and Boston College from the Atlantic, and
getting Florida State in Miami are all tremendous breaks. Closing up
with three road dates (Virginia, Georgia Tech and NC State) in the final
four, with the home game against the Hokies, isn't a plus.
Best offensive player: RB Javarris James. Although James
had an off-year as a sophomore, some of the blame goes to a nagging neck
injury and suspect blocking up front. Completely healthy again, he’s
poised to return to his freshman form, pounding between the tackles with
ferocity and overpowering defensive backs once he gets past the second
line of defense. James spent the past few months working on his speed,
delivering the program’s sixth fastest time in off-season
Best defensive player: LB Colin McCarthy. In just his first season
as the starter at strongside, McCarthy established himself as the new
star of the Hurricane defense. The fastest of the linebackers, he
cranked out 74 tackles, a dozen tackles for loss, and two sacks, laying
the foundation for what’s going to be a breakthrough junior year.
Key player to a successful season: Marve. While he doesn’t have
to be Jim Kelly right out of the chute, the rookie does need to light a
spark under an offense that’s been slipping for years. If he gives
opponents a reason to respect his arm and legs, the backfield
combination of James and Graig Cooper will obliterate most ACC defenses.
The season will be a success if ... Miami returns to the postseason
with no worse than an 8-4 record. After going 5-7 with a talented team,
moral victories will fall on deaf ears this season. Even with a rookie
quarterback, the ‘Canes have enough talent to make last year look like
an aberration. And the schedule is going to cooperate. After brutal
back-to-back road games at Florida and Texas A&M, there isn’t a
remaining game that’s not winnable.
Key game: Nov. 13 vs. Virginia Tech. In a drastically
watered-down Coastal Division, this meeting in Miami could decide who
plays in the ACC Championship game a few weeks later. The Hurricanes
got hammered by the Hokies last November, but that game was in
Blacksburg, and the programs were headed in different directions. A win
here could send a message that Miami is on its way to becoming one of
the league powerbrokers.
2007 Fun Stats
- Fourth quarter
scoring: Opponents 112 - Miami 61
- Third down conversions: Opponents 67 of 174 (39%) - Miami 61 of 167
- Orange Bowl capacity: 72,319 - Miami average home attendance 43,576