MIAMI (CBSMiami) – The Miami Hurricanes hit the practice field in Coral Gables on a sweltering Tuesday morning for opening day of fall camp.
The quarterback competition has officially begun.
During spring practices, the co-leaders to replace Brad Kaaya were sophomore Evan Shirreffs and junior Malik Rosier. Shirreffs holds perceived advantages in height (6-5 to Rosier’s 6-1) and ball security. Rosier has the edge in experience (2 years backing up Kaaya, 1 start).
With spring football in the rearview mirror, they will both be pushed by true freshman N’Kosi Perry. Perry is considered a dual threat quarterback with blazing speed and a college-ready arm.
The former Ocala Vanguard High School standout did not enroll in time for spring practices. He made his debut for Hurricanes coaches on day one of fall camp.
Those expecting Perry to take first team snaps on day one will have to wait. Head coach Mark Richt revealed after practice that Perry, along with fellow true freshman Cade Weldon, took snaps with the third team. Shirreffs and Rosier split reps with the ones.
All in all, Richt felt good about Perry’s first practice.
“He’s got very good passing fundamentals,” noted Richt, who added: “not a lot of wasted motion, got some nice zip on the ball. He does understand touch. He’s a passer. He’s not just a thrower like some guys are.”
As for how Perry is progressing with the system and playbook, Richt said: “I’d say maybe 50 percent he’s getting right now, which is probably good for the first day at the pace we’re going. That’s why you practice. That’s why you study film and correct things. We’ll install at a pace that’s faster than comfortable to him, but he’ll catch up.”
Senior wide receiver Braxton Berrios discussed Perry’s first day at ‘The U.’
“He did well,” said Berrios. “A few first day mistakes happen across the board, especially for quarterbacks,” Berrios noted. “You can tell he’s excited. He knows what to do. It’s just a matter of doing it and making the right decisions, but he looked good.”
Tight end Chris Herndon noted a few fumbles by Perry, likely the ‘first day mistakes’ Berrios referred to.
Whoever wins the quarterback job will have to take over for the Miami all-time career passing leader. Berrios hopes there won’t be too much pressure to fill Brad Kaaya’s shoes.
“I hope they don’t feel any more pressure than any other starting quarterback in the country does. Whoever wins the job, we’re going to believe in, and think he will do the best job for us.”
Miami will continue fall camp on Wednesday morning from the Green Tree Practice Fields.