Miami Hurricanes TE Chris Herndon out for the season

MIAMI GARDENS, FL - NOVEMBER 18: Christopher Herndon IV
MIAMI GARDENS, FL - NOVEMBER 18: Christopher Herndon IV /

Miami Hurricanes tight end Chris Herndon IV is out for the season following knee surgery. Herndon suffered a tear of his medial collateral ligament in Miami’s 24-14 loss to Pittsburgh on Friday.

Herndon was the Miami Hurricanes second-leading receiver in yards, receptions and touchdowns this season. He finishes his Senior year with 40 receptions for 477 yards and four touchdowns. Herndon ranks in the top ten in all of the career receiving stats among tight ends.

Herndon is also a team leader. He will be one of the toughest players for Mark Richt and his offensive staff to replace. Herndon’s targets are more likely to be distributed among the wide receivers than tight ends.

Herndon will be replaced by Michael Irvin II. Irvin, the son of Miami Hurricanes legend Michael Irvin has only five receptions for 56 yards this season. When the 2017 season began the two players most said were irreplaceable this season were Herndon and running back Mark Walton. Both have now been lost for the year.

Irvin has steadily improved this season according to Head Coach Mark Richt via ESPN.

"“He’s gotten better as the season has gone along.”"

Richt expects Irvin’s play to improve with being elevated to a starter. The Miami boss was quoted in the Palm Beach Post:

"“I think it’s typical when a guy becomes a starter, their level of play tends to go up,” Richt said. “I think he knows that when everyone is relying on him more than in the past, it’ll help him play better.”"

In the Miami Herald, Richt made it clear who the new starter is at tight end.

"“He will play, no doubt. He’s the starting tight end right now.”"

In addition to Irvin, Miami also has Freshman Brian Polendey, Scott Patchan and Sophmore Walk-on Malik Curry. The Hurricanes will be young but have more depth at tight end next season. They welcome highly ranked tight end verbal commits Brevin Jordan and Will Mallory as part of the 2018 recruiting class.

Tight End and Special Teams coach Todd Hartley was hurt by the news of Herndon’s season and career coming to an end.

Polendey is more of a blocker than receiver at this point in his career. Curry and Polendey have received limited playing time in 2017.

Watch for Miami’s bigger receivers like Darrell Langham, Dayall Harris and Lawrence Cager to see more targets in Saturday’s ACC Championship game against Clemson and whatever Bowl game (and hopefully the College Football Playoff) that the Hurricanes wind up in. Those three have combined for 31 receptions for 451 yards and six touchdowns this season.

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  • Richt spoke about the importance of Herndon to his team.

    "“Chris Herndon has been a warrior for us…He’s been a great player and a great leader on and off the field….It’s a shame he can’t finish with us because he’s very important for us. He’s been a mainstay in this offense, so I want to thank him first and foremost for everything he’s done for us.”"

    Herndon is a tough player for any team to replace especially this late in the season. The Hurricanes have now had to go extended stretches of this season with the three players expected the team’s best runner, receiver and top tight end.

    Walton was lost for the season after the Florida State October 7, wide receiver Ahmmon Richards has struggled through most of the season with a hamstring injury.

    Richards has only 24 receptions for 439 yards and three touchdowns. Those numbers are far off his Miami Freshman record of 934 yards receiving last season. He also had 43 receptions.

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    Braxton Berrios has picked up the slack with Richards dealing with the injury. He leads Miami with 44 receptions for 574 yards and nine touchdowns.