The one thing that Mark Richt has seemed to do in his short time as head coach of the Miami Hurricanes is stabilize the program. You can tell he has full control. At ACC media days we also had a chance to hear from two players that the program sent down, RB Mark Walton and LB Shaq Quarterman.
From a coaches perspective there is focus and it has trickled down to the players as well. One thing I had brought up about the media not respecting Miami, happened to be the first question asked to Shaq Quarterman on Friday, He was asked if the team takes it personally that not a lot of media came to ask questions to the players. Here’s Quarterman’s response:
Well, honestly I feel for our team when it comes to the media, we don’t really — I’m not going to say we don’t care, but we’re not really bothered by how the media feels or if they respect us enough to come and see us. We’re just here to play ball and compete like we’re supposed to do at Miami.
Perhaps the slights the team feels will be something that motivates them, which would obviously be a good thing.
Quarterman then talks a little about the incoming class:
I would say that you would need to look out for all of them. I think Coach Richt does a great job recruiting. We’ve got a lot of exciting guys coming in, people that are hungry, ready to put in the work, ready to work hard as they’ve been doing in the weight room, and we have those who just arrived who are just getting accustomed to how we do things. But I feel as though when they come into form, when they come into shape, it’s going to be awesome.
Mark Walton is going to play a major role on offense this year, considering he’s by far the most experienced player. With the question mark on the QB competition going into Fall camp, Walton addresses what he is going to expect of himself:
You know, as a leader on the offensive side of the ball, you’ve just got to make sure everybody is on one accord. Just don’t matter who`s going to come out and win the starting job at the quarterback. You just want to let them know that me as a running back, I’m going to make sure I do my job picking up any blitz and making sure I hold my own blocking protection to give him enough time to make the right throws so he can be comfortable back there throwing the ball so he won`t have rush a decision and make a bad play. Just making sure he knows that I’m a trustworthy guy for him.
Walton clearly looking to hold himself accountable as a leader on this team. Obviously from the team leaders standpoint this team is driven to win and win big this season.
As for the media, their line of questioning for the Miami players was very weak. Not trying to bash people, but they did a very lazy job asking the players questions. You ask lazy questions you are going to get quick answers. This goes to speak upon another topic, but it does go back to respect. Maybe the media that covers the ACC is too lazy to even look into the Miami program. Who knows, but not a great job down in Charlotte, at least from the transcripts.