You would be lying if you said you were a Hurricanes fan and don’t miss football season. The tailgates, the flashy Dyme Lyfe gear, the smoke, last year’s infamous Turnover Chain, and of course, the team itself.
Spring game brings back something special for all Hurricane fans, especially for the 15,875 that were in attendance at Hard Rock on Saturday. It’s a special off-season treat (or tease) to what’s to come out next season.
The Hurricanes have a lot to look forward next season, coming off the sky-high expectations of last seasons winning energy, even with the tough losses to Pitt, Clemson and Wisconsin at the end of the season and post-season. However, we have a very different team to watch this fall, missing stars like Braxton Berrios (wide receiver), Mike Badgley (kicker) and Christopher Herndon IV (tight end) who were all senior bowl selections.
Next season brings a new scope of talent, and challenges for the team. But this just brings on more excitement for what’s it come, its like the fans just got there first real hit at a piñata and the first release of a couple lollipops and tootsie rolls just popped out.
Too bad we have to wait until fall to get another swing and see what else falls out. The final score of the Spring Game was a 17-0 win for Team Soffer against Team Carol. However, what many fans were watching for was the tense quarterback competition for starting spot this fall. The three healthy quarterbacks (4th quarterback Cade Weldon is still out with contagious conjunctivitis): N’Kosi Perry, Jarren Williams, and last season’s starter Malik Rosier all got a chance to play and prove themselves during this game. None of the quarterbacks were allowed to be tackled, so no in-game injuries were an excuse for the three to not perform at their peak.
As much as Hurricanes fans and coaching squad yearned for a stand-out quarterback to rise from the ashes, that wasn’t the case.
Rosier played well, being sacked four times and still scrambling against Miami’s top defense. However, he didn’t perform outperform his past, and couldn’t couldn’t complete a touchdown the whole game. It’s possible he’s reached his top potential already which; as we saw last season, won’t be enough. At this point, it’s still technically his position to lose; but no one can say he’ll be stamped in as a permanent starter all season.
N’Kosi Perry, was handpicked by Coach Richt in the 2017 recruiting class for being an outstanding prep player. Perry was a redshirt freshman all of the 2017 season, and now he’s chomping at the bit to get his time to shine. At 6’4 and 185lbs, he also has a good physical stature to compete. The blue print for his success and to be a possible starter has been laid out for him as he’s watched on the sidelines all season. There’s rumors that he picks up plays faster than Rosier, and is more flexible and agile on the field. We might see his name slotted into starting spot earlier than fans think.
Jarren Williams, the only true freshman in the group. He graduated from high school early because of his talent and enrolled in Miami in the spring. Due to his young age and inexperience, he’s the one that needs the most guidance and improvement out of the three. He’s weighing in at 6’2 and 208lbs, a is a good size for the position. He’s still adjusting to the college nutrition and conditioning program so its likely his weight will flux over time, he’s still so new to the program and maybe time is really what Williams needs. For him to succeed, he needs to learn how to slow the game down to his speed, and understand the Miami offense inside out. It will still be a struggle for Williams, but a sixth round NFL draft pick is currently one of the best quarterbacks in the world, so crazier things really have happened.
Although right now it still seems that QB1 will be Rosier, Coach Richt won’t promise anything: “We’re not going to go out there and just hand it over to Malik and say, ‘You’ve got it no matter what happens” Richt said in a recent WQAM radio interview. Is Richt just toying with the fans and opponents? Or is this quarterback race closer than we think? Only time will tell but what we are in for is another season of surprises.
Photo credit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rJdQ_YzUH8A