Patchan & Moten Add to D-Line Depth
By David Villavicencio
CORAL GABLES, Fla. – The Miami Hurricanes defensive line made a name for itself in 2016, thanks in large part to the performances of standouts like Chad Thomas, Kendrick Norton, RJ McIntosh and Joe Jackson.
While that quartet projects as Miami’s starters on the defensive line, the Hurricanes rotate a lot of talented players on the line to keep up with their aggressive style of play. Conditioning is important to play at that pace, but so is depth, and the Hurricanes feature a talented and deep group on the defensive line.
Senior Trent Harris and redshirt junior Demetrius Jackson have proven to be quality defensive ends and they provide some immediate depth behind Thomas and Jackson. Add in the hyped freshmen Jonathan Garvin and DJ Johnson and you create even more depth at the end position. But there is one player who could be poised for a breakout season in 2017: Scott Patchan.
A redshirt sophomore, Patchan has played one snap as a Hurricane. The former four-star recruit was an explosive pass rusher coming out of IMG Academy, but a pair of knee injuries have limited him to just one snap in the Florida State game a year ago.
“I probably pushed myself too much, I probably shouldn’t have been in that game,” Patchan said. “I was medically cleared, obviously, but I was so excited and I kept pushing myself. Plus, I don’t think the coaches would’ve let me not play in that game. After that there was a minor setback – tweaked the knee a little bit – but nonetheless worked hard and did whatever they asked me to do. It’s been a little long I am finally feeling great now, getting my roots in the ground and wearing off the rust.”
On Saturday at Miami’s first scrimmage of fall camp, Patchan showed some of the explosive burst that made him a recruiting coup for the Hurricanes. Patchan finished with four tackles, including three tackles for loss for 15 yards and a pair of sacks for 13 yards.
“It was a great feeling,” Patchan said of playing in the scrimmage. “Glory to God that I am healthy again. I am happy to be out here with my teammates.
While Patchan is looking to make a name for himself after a few injury-plagued seasons, senior Anthony Moten is determined to make his final season in Coral Gables his best one.
“It’s my last go around,” Moten said. “I’m just pushing myself and we are all pushing each other to be the best.”
Moten has played largely as a reserve at Miami, making four starts while playing in 33 games over three years. But the senior from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., has worked to improve his conditioning and stamina so he can be a bigger contributor in 2017.
“Definitely with my fatigue,” Moten said of his biggest improvement. “Last year if I got tired after four plays, coach wouldn’t trust me after those four plays. I’m a lot better and have been working on it. I’ve been trying to go more than what I can do.”
Moten is slated to play behind junior standout Kendrick Norton, but he knows he may be called on to do other things and he is open to helping however he can.
“Whenever Kendrick gets tired, I am going to come in the game and do my thing,” Moten said. “No slack off this season. When he comes out of the game, there will be no slack off. Last year we had an injury in the Virginia Tech game and I went to D-end. I hadn’t played D-end since like my 10th grade year. If somebody gets hurt or tired, I’m coming in. I just want no knock off, that’s all.”
Miami opens the season at home on Sept. 2 against Bethune-Cookman. Kickoff is set for 12:30 p.m., ET. Click here for ticket information.