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Where the Hurricanes Stand At Quarterback

Alex Donno
July 31, 2019 - 3:30 pm
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Before the start of fall camp, Miami Hurricanes head coach Manny Diaz said he won't make his decision on a starting quarterback until two weeks into practice. Redshirt freshman Jarren Williams is competing with redshirt sophomores N'Kosi Perry and Tate Martell.

We're five days in, and Diaz not offering any hints as to who might be in the lead. 

“Like I said, we’re in a battle," said Diaz. "If we sit there and try to make an assumption off of one good throw or one bad throw, or one good day and one bad day, that’s not the point. I can look at the last three and a half years and I can show you a good day of a quarterback and a bad day of a quarterback. To me, it’s about being consistently good. That’s why it’s silly to make an assessment off a drill or a throw or whatever. There are all kinds of guys in college football who make good throws, or have a good quarter, or heck, even have a good game. This is the University of Miami. Our standards are so far beyond that. We need a guy that can bring it every week, that the whole team can trust every week. The only way we can replicate that is coming at it from the long term, bringing it every day over the course of the month of August.”

Here's what some other Hurricanes coaches and players have said about the quarterbacks. 

Offensive coordinator Dan Enos:

“One big thing we’ve talked about is, obviously I think we really challenged these guys after the spring to push themselves from a mental standpoint and a physical standpoint, to get better every day. We laid out a plan for them. Obviously we can’t have a lot of interaction with them. We can’t be on the field with them at all, with the ball. We did a throwing mechanics analysis and a drop analysis of each guy and gave them some specific drills that they needed to improve on – first off, the physical part of the position, which we know is very important.

“When you’re dealing with the physical part of quarterback, you do not want to spend a lot of time during the season, because you’re worried about competition during the season. You have to spend time teaching those things. We’ll certainly work on fundamentals, and continue to own things and work on things that we may not be great at, but certainly we don’t want to spend our time putting that in a guy’s mind the entire year.”

Sophomore Tight End Will Mallory:

“I think all three of them have stepped their game up. They’re all competing really well. Obviously we all know it’s going to come down to one guy. I think all three of them are buying in and taking it extremely seriously. We’re going to see where the next few weeks take us.”

Junior WR Mike Harley:

“Every quarterback we have is standing out. Their biggest job that I have seen so far where they improved, is they are all consistent. All three are consistent. Every quarterback that’s competing for the spot is consistent. They are being the leaders that coach [Dan] Enos is teaching them to be. They’re demanding everything. They make plays and are just putting the ball on the money, so it is up to the receivers and running backs to make plays.”

*And here's what the quarterbacks themselves had to say, courtesy of the University of Miami media department.

Tate Martell, Quarterback, R-So.

On his ability to scramble and make plays under pressure, and when he decides to run…

“When I know a guy can sack me, I first take off. That’s really what it is. I go out there, go through my reads and if I get some pressure that’s up in my face, and I know I’m probably not going to be able to get rid of the ball, I want to go make a play. That’s just how I’ve always played. That’s how I’ve played my whole life. I go out there and make plays when I have to, and when a play breaks down.”

On the offseason and what he worked on correcting from spring…

“We had to all do a quarterback analysis. I went through and my biggest thing was shortening my stride and moving one of my fingers up and one of my fingers down a little bit. That’s helped me out a lot with being able to spin the ball out there. We all kind of went through the same thing and corrected different things. That’s why we’ve all gotten so much better.”

On being at the University of Miami…

“I love it here. This is where I wanted to transfer to. I had the opportunity to come here and this is where we want to be. I know that we have a great team. We have great coaches. It’s going to be good for us. We’re going to do really well this year.”

N’Kosi Perry, Quarterback, R-So.

On shifting between groups and splitting reps during practice…

“To be honest, it’s not that hard because [offensive coordinator Dan Enos] makes sure we all get reps. If we’re not going with the ones [first string] or twos, we’re going to with the threes and fours because we’re trying to get as many reps as we can.”

On how he feels now compared to the end of spring practice…

“I feel great about what’s going on. More importantly, the team is doing a whole lot better than what we were looking like in the spring. I’m very confident about where we’re at with it only being the fourth practice. I feel good about us.”

On why he would describe himself as feeling great…

“Preparation. That’s the main thing. As long as I’m prepared, I come out here and know what I’m doing, I’m going to be confident.”

Jarren Williams, Quarterback, R-Fr.

On how he feels through four days of camp, in comparison to the spring…

“I feel, honestly, a lot more comfortable in the offense. Of course going through the spring, it was my first time in the offense…being able to see everything and then having the summer to work on it, made me feel a lot more comfortable going into the fall.”

On what he has learned from offensive coordinator/quarterback coach Dan Enos…

“He comes with it every day. He pushes us hard every single day. The thing about Coach Enos, is that he expects perfection every play. And if you don’t give that, he is going to correct you on the spot. Being with him through the spring and going through the summer and all that, I feel like I have been getting a lot better every day because he is pushing us so hard.”

On how he is embracing the competition…

“I love competition. I feel like competition brings the best out of everybody. I’m a competitor. That’s why I’m here.”