At OL, Miami is in a deep state of flux. The line is anchored by All America candidate junior LT Eric Winston. Winston was a 5 star all american TE in Odessa TX in a running offense. He started out his career as a FB/HB in 2002 and played substantially. As his weight ballooned however to 280 pounds he asked to be moved to the line. Playing left tackle for the first time in 2003 as a true sophomore Winston performed brilliantly. Named Miami's Best OL by the Miami coaches at the 2003 Miami Football awards banquet and Big East All First Team, Winston excels in pass blocking and has alot of grit, charisma and heart. He is nicknamed "Animal" cause he just is. Winston will most likely leave after this year and should be a mid first round prospect. He needs to work on his run blocking but with another year he should improve. His pass blocking is already super. The rest of Miami's line however is questionable. Center Joel Rodriguez struggled mightily last year. RT Rashad Butler filled in for the oft-injured Vernon Carey well, but now he is hurt and is unlikely for the FSU game. Manning the guard positions are Tony Tella (who is nursing an injury as well and may not play) and Chris Myers. Myers is a very good RG who can also play center. He is an NFL prospect. Due to injuries, sophomore Andrew Bain, a good HS player but an unknown quantity at the college level will recieve playing time from the get go and JC transfer Tyler McMeans will as well.
Miami's Special Teams is a solid unit outside of the punter. Punter Brian Monroe struggled mightily last year and i wont believe he has improved until i see it. Returning Punts is Antrel Rolle who did a fabulous job. Speedsters Roscoe Parrish and Devin Hester (who returned a kick for a TD against Fla.) are dangerous on KR. Kicker Jon "IceMan" (a reference to his ability to kick well in the clutch and his facial likeness to Val Kilmer in Top Gun) Peattie is a great kicker and one of the nation's best in my opinion. He has the leg and doesnt feel pressure.
Overall, i think this squad is much like 1994. QB play, WR play and RB play will be good but not great, (just as Frank Costa, James Stewart, Jammi German and Chris T. Jones were okay) The OL outside of one guy is a question mark. The Defensive Line, like its 1994 counterpart is an absolute beast and the rest of the defense is very, very solid, albeit very young and mistake prone in a few areas and some threatening depth issues.
SoCal's Game Prediction: Florida State 21, Miami 17.
Last edited by SoCalBronco; 08-31-2004 at 11:07 PM..