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Miami Hurricanes

Miami’s Shaq Quarterman named as a Butkus Award candidate

Ari Russell

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(Photo by Richard C. Lewis/Icon Sportswire)

Miami Hurricanes  sophomore LB Shaq Quarterman has been named as a Butkus Award (nation’s top LB) candidate heading into the 2017 season. This isn’t a major surprise and he could indeed be one of the front runners considering the expectations for Quarterman coming in and the aggressive nature of Manny Diaz’s defense.

In addition to the Butkus award, Quarterman has also been named as a candidate for the  Nagurski Award (defensive player of the year) and the Bednarik Award (top defensive player). Nagurski and Bednarik are pretty redundant, but they are both pretty prestigious awards.

The Miami Herald did a great job looking for a comparison of a former Canes LB with the sophomore Quarterman.  The comparison is Dan Morgan, which is quite the compliment. Susan Miller Degnan has a great breakdown of Morgan:

Morgan was one of the most dominant defensive players I’ve ever covered, playing with astounding energy through never-ending injuries, and absolutely pulverizing the competition. Out of Coral Spring Taravella High, the 6-3, 230-pound Morgan had 139 tackles his junior season, despite a broken thumb for much of it, and set a Miami record for tackles in a career with 532. He was the 11th overall pick by the Carolina Panthers in the 2001 Draft and played for seven seasons.

I was at Miami when Morgan was there and everything and he was quite the player. He was all over the field. To be compared to Morgan is a pretty big deal. Morgan became the first in college history to win the Butkus, Nagurski and Bednarik awards, when he won it in 2000. As Susan Miller Degnan explained, Morgan did a lot of it through injuries. He was a tough cookie and folks say that Quarterman has similar toughness.

Whether Quarterman completes the Dan Morgan award trifecta will be determined at a much later date, but he is in position to do repeat the feat. The cool part is that Quarterman after this season still has two more seasons to go, if he chooses to stay until his senior year. He’s only going to get bigger, faster, stronger and better in that time. We may not even be seeing the tip of the iceberg with this young man, which is exciting for Canes fans and devastating for opponents.

Born in the Nation’s Capital, Washington D.C., Ari Russell watched the rise of the 1980’s Miami Hurricanes and knew that he had to be part of the “U” someday. After graduating from Coral Gables, Ari rose through the ranks of the former XM Satellite Radio and then Sirius/XM as college football executive producer. He later spent 2 seasons as the publisher of the website “Beyond U Sports” focusing on major college football/basketball. Ari brings a great perspective on everything Miami, including the Dolphins to F.F.I.

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Miami Hurricanes

Hurricanes QB Williams intends to transfer

Florida Football Insiders

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Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

The only constant for the last two seasons with the Miami Hurricanes quarterback position has been change and with the addition of Houston transfer D’Eriq King earlier this week, it apparently means more changes are on the way for the competition.

Sports Illustrated college football Insider Pat Forde reported Thursday afternoon that the Miami starter for most of the season, freshman Jarren Williams, has entered the NCAA transfer portal:

Williams won the starting job for first-year coach Manny Diaz and now-fired former offensive coordinator Dan Enos, during fall practice what had an up-and-down season. He played in all 12 games with a 61% completion percentage and had a 19/7 TD to INT ratio. 

However, more importantly the Hurricanes offense as a whole went down the tubes. This was especially in their final three games Williams was at the helm for the stunning loss to Florida International, where he threw three interceptions.

He and the Canes followed that with a road loss at awful Duke, where Williams tallied only 142 yards with a TD. And, worst yet, with rumors swirling everywhere that Enos was about to be fired,  a game in Independence Bowl where the QB had just 92 yards and an INT Miami failed to score in a 14 – 0 defeat to Louisiana Tech.

King is the presumptive starter after having a successful two seasons at Houston. His best year was 2018 with nearly 2,900 yards in the air with 36 passing TDs and only 6 INTS.

However, he was benched by new coach Dana Holgorsen earlly this year and is a graduate transfer that is immediately eligible.

Miami also has the part-time starter from the last two years N’kosi Perry, as well as former Ohio State quarterback Tate Martell, who transferred and was immediately eligible this past season. However, Martell couldn’t beat Williams or Perry out for playing time, but he did play briefly at time at wide receiver.

Back to Williams, he still has three years of eligibility remaining but unless he gained some kind of waiver he would have to sit hey transfer year next season.

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Miami Hurricanes

Not so fast on QB D’Eriq King coming to Hurricanes?

Florida Football Insiders

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Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

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:

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.

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