Mark Richt Much Happier with Miami Hurricanes Offense in 2nd Scrimmage


Miami Hurricanes Head Coach Mark Richt ripped into his team after Friday’s practice. He told reporters the team was jogging through practices on Thursday and Friday. He also asked reporters not to print what he said to his team on Friday.

Richt was happier with the overall offensive performance of his Miami Hurricanes in Saturday’s second scrimmage of training camp. While most of the fan focus has been on who is going to be the starting quarterback will be, there are still a lot of questions about other areas of the offense.

Richt was not happy with the performance of the offense in short yardage on Saturday. The depth at running back and tight end are still a concern and Richt would also like the offensive line to continue to evolve this season.

Mark Walton and Chris Herndon IV give Richt a great tandem at starting running back and tight end. Behind them are big question marks. Travis Homer has seven career carries and Trayone Gray is coming off of a torn ACL and missed the 2016 season. They will get the majority of carries behind Walton.

Herndon is the only tight end on the Miami Hurricanes roster who has a career reception. His primary backup is Sophomore walk-on, Malik Curry. The coaching staff has not been happy with the progress of Sophomore Michael Irvin II and Freshman Brian Polendey.

The offensive line had a much better day during the second scrimmage of the spring than they did during practice on Thursday and Friday. Richt discussed the totality of his team’s success after the scrimmage with the Palm Beach Post.

"“Very good execution, starting with protection…Guys running good routes. Quarterback making good decisions, accurate throws. Guys snatching the ball, getting yards after the catch. Hitting guys on the run instead of throwing a ball that forces them to stumble or whatever. Pretty precise, throwing and catching today, with the No. 1 unit especially.”"

The running game had its moments at times. Homer could be one of the most important players to the success of the Miami Hurricanes offense this season. Walton is going to be expected to carry a lot of the load offensively.

Homer was the most impressive running back on Saturday. Walton only had three carries for no yards. The coaching staff limited him after he bruised his hip in last week’s scrimmage.

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  • Homer has six carries for 48 yards and a touchdown. Walk-on Crispian Atkins had eight carries for 17 yards and Trayone Gray six for ten yards.

    There have been no reports on what happened with Freshman Robert Burns. Burns has been in a green non-contact jersey throughout training camp.

    "Asked about the running game after the scrimmage Richt said: “We ran the ball well at times”"

    Herndon is the only tight end that recorded stats per the Post. He finished with four catches for 67 yards and touchdown.

    Other concerns offensively are on third downs and short yards.

    Miami is missing fullback Marquez Williams from last season and tight end David Njoku. Williams parlayed a graduate transfer season into being drafted by the Jacksonville Jaguars.

    Njoku was arguably the Miami Hurricanes best player in the red zone and in short-yardage last season. Herndon could be a poor man’s Njoku, but no one is really on the roster that can replace Williams. Richt said:

    "“We have not put in a goal-line offense. It’s obvious we haven’t…We’re not very good. I don’t even know if we have the personnel to do it, quite frankly. We don’t have some of the big fullbacks and tight ends as we’ve had in the past. I’ve got to figure out how to score on that goal line.”"

    The short yardage and goal-line offense could be an issue this season. In a season with high aspirations, this is a big concern with Richt. Getting first downs in short yardage is vital in close games.

    Next: Too Early to Panic For Miami Football Class of 2018

    The Miami Hurricanes will hold their final scrimmage of training camp next Saturday. The Hurricanes still have plenty of room to grow and things to work on per Richt.