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Late INT Seals Win for Defense in Spring Game, 32-29

Late INT Seals Win for Defense in Spring Game, 32-29

March 29, 2008

2008 Spring Game Statistics Get Acrobat Reader

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<?xml:namespace prefix=”st1″ ns=”urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags”?>FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Freshman linebacker Arthur Brown recorded a team-high eight tackles and added an interception as the defense defeated the offense, 32-29, in the annual University of Miami spring game at the BankUnited Canesfest Saturday morning at Lockhart Stadium in front of an estimated crowd of 11,000. Rising sophomore running back Graig Cooper led the offense with eight carries for 91 yards and two touchdowns.


Cooper finished with 103 total yards of offense and ran for a 44-yard touchdown run. Running back Javarris James caught four passes for 60 yards and ran once for a 25-yard gain, but it was Miami’s defense that came away winners behind its linebackers Brown, Darryl Sharpton and Sean Spence. Sharpton finished with five tackles and recorded three of the defense’s six sacks. Spence intercepted two passes on the day. The scoring was set up so that the defense earned two points each for a three-and-out, interception, fumble and one point for a defensive stop before the offense crossed the 50-yard line.


The Hurricane offense racked up 19 first downs in four eight-minute quarters and gained 364 yards – 141 rushing and 223 through the air. Redshirt freshman quarterback Robert Marve completed 10-of-22 passes for 93 yards. True freshman quarterback Jacory Harris finished 9-of-17 for 64 yards while true freshman quarterback Cannon Smith was 1-of-5 with a 66-yard completion to sophomore running back Shawnbrey McNeal.


The defense started to rally from a 28-16 deficit in the 13th series with a three-and-out good for three points pulling it within, 28-19. Two more consecutive three-and-outs by the offense drew the defense within, 28-25, heading into the 16th series. That’s when Brown helped the defense score five points to go ahead. He intercepted a pass on third-down and returned it 11 yards, which tacked on two more points to the three-and-out which gave the defense a 30-28 lead with time for only one more series left.


Marve directed the offense over the 50-yard line for one point as he connected with James on third-and-three for nine yards drawing the offense within, 32-29, but on the final play of the game, Spence intercepted Marve right outside the goal-line sealing the win for the defense.


Marve drove the offense right down the field on the opening series of the game. James ran off right tackle for a 25-yard gain as the offense crossed the 50 for a 1-0 lead. Two plays later, Cooper ran 27 yards for touchdown and Matt Bosher added the extra-point as the offense led, 8-0. Harris helped the offense cross the 50 on the next series to make it, 9-0, in favor of the offense. Sophomore cornerback DeMarcus Van Dyke blocked an Alex Uribe 51-yard field goal attempt to end the series.


The defense’s first points came on a three-and-out in the third series to make it, 9-3. The offense crossed the 50 again, but the defense added a three-and-out stop in the fifth series as the offense led, 10-6. Smith led the offense on a four-point drive which included the 66-yard hook-up with McNeal. Freshman kicker Jake Wieclaw’s 21-yard field goal capped off the drive to make it, 14-6, after the sixth series.


The defense scored six points on the next possession when they forced a three-and-out before the 50-yard line and Spence intercepted his first pass of the day drawing the defense within, 14-12. Offense led, 15-12, at halftime.


After the defense drew within, 15-15, a 21-yard reception by James from Marve highlighted the next series, which ended on an Uribe 24-yard field goal giving the offense a 19-15 lead.


Cooper’s 44-yard touchdown run put the offense ahead, 28-16, heading into the 13th series.


The defense also tallied four tackles for loss and seven pass breakups in the game. Senior wide receiver Kayne Farquharson had four receptions for 29 yards.


Other Game Notes:

– Freshman running back Lee Chambers carried 11 times for 36 yards.

– Senior linebacker Glenn Cook finished with four tackles – one tackle for loss.

– Linebacker Spencer Adkins, defensive lineman Chaz Washington and defensive lineman Allen Bailey each had a sack.

– Running back Javarris James finished with 85 total yards of offense.

– The spring game culminated UM’s spring practice which included 14 team practices (two scrimmages).



UM Head Coach Randy Shannon

On the young players that stood out:

“We’re really excited about those eight guys came in this spring. We had a couple of long runs today with is an attribute to Patrick Hill and John Calhoun blocking for us. You also saw the playmaking ability of Sean Spence getting an interception early in the game and at the end of the game. We’re really excited about, and about how the quarterbacks played. They managed the game. They had three turnovers, which is unacceptable, but they managed the game pretty well. They were able to get the ball into Javarris’ hands and to the tight ends. They moved it around and moved the chains.


LB Glenn Cook

On the blitzing schemes the defense was showing:

“We really didn’t do too much (blitzing). A lot of it was our reads, but it kind of looked like that. We did a little bit just to get some of it in, but we still have some work to do.”


On the defense winning:

“It means a lot. We wanted to win regardless if it’s a practice game. We don’t like to lose to the offense. We’ve been competing everyday the whole spring, so it was good to close it out with a win.”


LB Sean Spence

On what the plans are now that spring practice is over:

“We’re going to get into the weight room with coach (Andreu) Swasey, work hard, try to get a little bit bigger and get better.”


RB Graig Cooper

On the running game today and the offense running more than passing:

“The O-Line, quarterback, fullbacks and wide receivers did a good job blocking down field. We wanted to come out and have a good day of work. We didn’t have an emphasis on anything – no game plan or anything. We just wanted to work hard.”


RB Javarris James

On the 1-2 punch of he and Graig Cooper:

“I think it’s real good because both of us can line up in the slot and line up in the backfield and do a lot of things – not just from the running back position. As you can see, both of us can make plays when we get the ball in our hands. I think it’s going to help the offense out a lot as well as the other running backs. All of us can make plays no matter what the combination is.”