We’ll get more into the position battles later this week and next week, in advance of the Hurricanes’ first practice of the spring Tuesday, March 20.
To set the table, here’s a review of the players who are 0n scholarship now, and who are expected to be this fall.
When the rest of their 2018 recruiting class and a pair of graduate transfers arrive this summer, Miami will have 82 players on scholarship — good news for a program that struggled with depth throughout the Al Golden era and into the first two seasons of Mark Richt’s tenure.
Richt has said he has room to add more players, but he wishes to be selective.
MORE SPRING FOOTBALL 2018
Returning (listed in order of class year as of this fall): Malik Rosier, R-Sr.; N’Kosi Perry, R-Fr.; Cade Weldon, R-Fr.
Newly enrolled: Jarren Williams, Fr.
Comment: Four scholarship quarterbacks after the transfer of Evan Shirreffs, who played in four games last year as a backup. More on the UM quarterback situation here.
Returning: Travis Homer, Jr., DeeJay Dallas, Soph.; Trayone Gray, R-Sr., Robert Burns, R-Fr.; Crispian Atkins, R-Jr.
Newly enrolled: Lorenzo Lingard, Fr.
On the way: Camron Davis, Fr.; Realus George, Fr.
Comment: Reloading here after losing Mark Walton to the NFL draft (as expected). Lingard, a game-breaker in training, joins Homer and Dallas in a highly talented backfield.
Returning: Ahmmon Richards, Jr.; Dayall Harris, R-Sr., Darrell Langham, R-Sr.; Lawrence Cager, R-Jr.; Jeff Thomas, Soph.; Mike Harley, Soph.; Evidence Njoku, R-Fr.
Newly enrolled: Brian Hightower, Fr.; Daquris Wiggins, Fr.
On the way: Mark Pope, Fr., Marquez Ezzard, Fr.
Comment: Much deeper this spring than during the last few, when walk-ons got lots of burn. Richards (Nov. knee surgery) will be limited. Lots of size, speed and the numbers are good.
Returning: Michael Irvin II, Jr.; Brian Polendey, Fr.
On the way: Brevin Jordan, Fr.; Will Mallory, Fr.
Comment: A fall position battle to watch after the arrival of Jordan, rated best at his position by recruiting services, and fellow four-star prospect Mallory.
Returning: Jahair Jones, R-Sr.; Tyler Gauthier, Sr.; Tyree St. Louis, Sr.; George Brown, R-Jr.; Hayden Mahoney, R-Jr.; Bar Milo, R-Jr.; Tre Johnson, R-Soph.; Navaughn Donaldson, Soph.; Kai-Leon Herbert, Soph.; Corey Gaynor, Soph.; Zach Dykstra, R-Fr.; Zalon’tae Hillery, R-Fr.
Newly enrolled: Delone Scaife, Fr.; John Campbell, Fr.
On the way: Cleveland Reed, Fr.; Venzell Boulware, Sr. (Tennessee grad transfer)
Comment: Group is rebuilding after two quality classes. Gauthier, St. Louis and Donaldson are returning starters. Herbert and Gaynor could join them, but Scaife is an impressive newcomer.
Returning: Demetrius Jackson, R-Sr., Scott Patchan, R-Jr.; Joe Jackson, Jr.; Jonathan Garvin, Soph.
Newly enrolled: Gregory Rousseau, Fr.
Comment: Talent level is high (Joe Jackson and Garvin are NFL-caliber athletes) but depth is questionable (Demetrius Jackson and Patchan are coming off knee injuries; four-star freshman D.J. Johnson transferred).
Returning: Gerald Willis, R-Sr.; Pat Bethel, Jr.; Tyreic Martin, R-Soph.; Jonathan Ford, Soph.
On the way: Tito Odenigbo, Sr. (Illinois grad transfer); Nesta Silvera, Fr.; Jordan Miller, Fr.
Comment: Took a hit after losing starters Kendrick Norton and R.J. McIntosh and backup Anthony Moten. Willis, a former blue-chip recruit, returns after a year sabbatical for personal reasons. Bethel, Ford and Silvera are likely to be in the rotation.
Returning: Mike Smith, R-Sr.; Terry McCray, R-Sr.; Charles Perry, Sr.; Shaq Quarterman, Jr.; Michael Pinckney, Jr.; Zach McCloud, Jr., Bradley Jennings, Soph.; De’Andre Wilder, Soph.; Waynmon Steed, R-Fr.
On the way: Patrick Joyner, Fr.
Comment: The ACC’s best starting unit in Quarterman, Pinckney and McCloud, with quality depth in Smith, Jennings and Wilder. Steed and Perry are coming off knee injuries.
Returning: Michael Jackson, Sr.; Jhavonte Dean, Sr.; Trajan Bandy, Soph.
Newly enrolled: Gilbert Frierson, Fr.; D.J. Ivey, Fr.
On the way: Al Blades Jr., Fr.; Nigel Bethel, Fr.
Comment: Hard to lose standout Malek Young to a career-ending neck injury — and whiff on a few five-star 2018 recruits — but the incoming class is good, Jackson and Bandy should be productive and Dean has tools.
Returning: Jaquan Johnson, Sr.; Sheldrick Redwine, Sr.; Robert Knowles, R-Jr.; Romeo Finley, Jr.; Amari Carter, Soph.; Derrick Smith, Soph.
Newly enrolled: Gurvan Hall, Fr.
Comment: Numbers are getting close to where UM wants. Johnson and Redwine are a quality tandem, and there are hard-hitters around them.
Returning: Zach Feagles, Soph. (punter); Jordan Butler, Sr. (long snapper)
On the way: Bubba Baxa, Fr. (kicker)
Comment: Inexperienced here after the graduation of kicker Michael Badgley. Feagles struggled at times in his first season.