It’s been a whirlwind few days since the crazy twist that brought Manny Diaz back from Temple to the University of Miami, as their new head coach. And now it appears, he has zeroed in on his new offensive coordinator. Or has he?
Conflicting reports emerged Thursday evening as to whether Diaz has hired former Houston head coach Major Applewhite to be the play caller for the Canes starting in 2019.
Canesinsight.com had reported Thursday in the early evening that Applewhite had agreed and the details were being finalized for him to lead the Hurricanes offense. However, another reliable national coaching site. Footballscoop.com disputed that the agreement was finalized and further, said the two sides we’re talking, but it was not done.
Diaz is moving quickly to shore up his offensive staff, and there was a report earlier this week had him trying to hire former North Carolina head coach Larry Fedora, as his offensive coordinator. Fedora withdrew from consideration on Wednesday.
Applewhite is a former quarterback at Texas in the late 1990s and enjoyed a successful playing career. He later rose through the coaching ranks and was the Longhorns offensive coordinator beginning under Mack Brown. After being a Texas assistant from 2008-13, he became Houston’s offensive coordinator from 2015-16.
He had been Houston’s head coach for the last two full seasons with a 15 and 11 record including an 8-4 regular season in 2018. However, his Cougars were destroyed by Army 70-14 in the December 22nd Armed Forces Bowl and he was fired this past Sunday.
Back to Diaz, as our Matt Zemek wrote yesterday, he understands very clearly that the Miami offense has to be fixed and fast. The Canes imploded as the 2018 season wore on, especially offensively. This would include their disastrous blowout loss to Wisconsin in the Pinstripe Bowl last week. A game where Miami, with a month to prepare, scored only three points.
Not so fast on QB D’Eriq King coming to Hurricanes?
24 hours later it doesn’t look dead certain that Houston transfer quarterback D’Eriq King will end up at the University of Miami after all.
In fact, it may be several days before we know the coveted grad transfer QB decides to do.
This after a report Sunday out of Houston from Fox 26 Sports director Mark Berman ,who got comments from King about his short term plans and visits:
D’Eriq King (@DeriqKing_), who is transferring from @UHCougarFB, says he has yet to make a final decision on where he’s going: “I haven’t committed to anybody yet. I’m still looking at my options. I visited Miami. I liked it, but there are other options I’m still trying see to..” pic.twitter.com/E4kz2xypWR
— Mark Berman (@MarkBermanFox26) January 19, 2020
It is interesting that King is considering Maryland in the mix in addition to powerhouse LSU and possibly trying to revitalize Miami.
As our Jamil King wrote on Sunday it looked like the Houston standout quarterback was “e-ticketed” for Coral Gables and to come as a package deal with newly hired offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee. Lashlee, who has previously been at Auburn and the SMU offensive coordinator the last couple of seasons, was hired two weeks ago to help jump start the Canes disastrous offense from the second half of last year.
Quarterback play plagued the Canes in 2019 with Jarren Williams showing flashes of great play followed by freshman mistakes and inconsistency. N’kosi Perry found his way into some games, but was also inconsistent in his own right. Miami suffered humiliating losses to FIU and at Duke to close the regular season.
Then, the Hurricanes were completely inept in the Independence Bowl, while being shut out 14-0. This, while rumors were swirling everywhere that coach Manny Diaz would be firing his first year offensive coordinator, Dan Enos. Enos, who had been the QB coach at Alabama, was fired the next day.
Back to King, if the Hurricanes are able to land him, they get a player who over his career at the University of Houston threw for 4,925 yards for an average of 8.2 yards per attempt and tossed 50 touchdowns with only ten interceptions.
King also completed almost 62% of his passes with the Cougars, adding another 28 touchdowns on the ground. He promises to bring some explosives, something the Canes desperately needed, if they can land him.
Hurricanes land Houston QB transfer King
Miami Hurricanes coach Manny Diaz found out very quickly that the life if a head coach isn’t an easy one. He saw his Miami Hurricane offense move nothing like a “Hurricane” at all.
Instead of fast and lethal, it was often slow and stagnant.
Thus, Diaz had to go in a different direction for his offense replacing his first-year offensive coordinator Dan Enos, and he made what looks to be like a strong hire in Rhett Lashlee, bringing his spread offense over from SMU.
Quarterback play plagued the Canes in 2019 with Jarren Williams showing flashes of great play followed by freshman mistakes and inconsistency. N’kosi Perry found his way into some games but was also inconsistent in his own right.\
With New OC Lashlee coming in, it was going to be interesting if either Williams or Perry could run the new system or if seldom used 2019 transfer Tate Martell may be the best fit?
All of those questions may be answered for us already with news coming out today on a new Miami quarterback entering the fold. Houston transfer D’Eriq King has decided to play for the Canes in 2020.
— Manny Navarro (@Manny_Navarro) January 19, 2020
King is an immediate upgrade in the QB room for a few different reasons for the Hurricanes in 2020. First, over his career at the University of Houston (above), King has thrown for 4,925 yards for an average of 8.2 yards per attempt and tossed 50 touchdowns with only ten interceptions.
King also completed almost 62% of his passes with the Cougars, adding another 28 touchdowns on the ground. The young man can flat out play ball, something the Canes desperately needed.
King is also going to be a leader in the locker room and the quarterback room. He is an older guy and will be someone everyone can look up to and listen to another coach on the field. King also brings the most to this offense.
He has the ability to make deep throws to the far side or hit a man in stride. He also brings the running ability to the offense that opens up a Pandora’s box for Lashlee. He can use the QB designed run, an option here and there, and lots of RPOs.
The addition of King is certainly an exciting one, and once again, for the second offseason in a row, there is new optimism on the offense in Coral Gables.
The question is this time will the excitement last longer into the season, and will it produce?
Miami Hurricanes3 days ago
Not so fast on QB D’Eriq King coming to Hurricanes?
Miami Dolphins1 week ago
Who is new Dolphins defensive coordinator Josh Boyer?
Tampa Bay Buccaneers3 days ago
Bucs Evans got respect from LeBron James Saturday night
NFL Draft1 week ago
Interesting NFL names- new players at Tuesday Shrine Bowl practice