University of Miami offensive tackle Seantrel Henderson, a 6-8, 340-pound junior who was one of the most coveted recruits in the nation when he arrived at UM in 2010, was a no-show Sunday for the third consecutive day of fall practice.
Reporters were told Thursday afternoon that Henderson would not be at the opening of fall camp Friday because he would be attending the funeral of a childhood friend in Henderson’s home state of Minnesota.
Then when Henderson did not report to practice Saturday, UM coach Al Golden said he was expected back sometime that day.
And early Sunday morning, as his players were entering Greentree Field, Golden said, “Seantrel is not here yet. Hopefully, we’ll get him here [Sunday]. Hopefully, that’s the deal.
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“I haven’t even checked in on it this morning, to be honest. I’ve been so busy getting ready for practice.”
Reporter: “Is he back in town?”
Golden: “I don’t know that.”
Reporter: “Is this all due to the funeral? Is this all excused?”
Golden: “Correct, yeah.”
Henderson’s father could not be reached because his voicemail was repeatedly full.
Henderson’s UM career has been marked by controversy. He most recently was suspended for the first weekend of spring practice in early March for violating an undisclosed team policy.
Then he showed up “significantly late” to the start of a summer session, Golden told The Miami Herald two weeks ago during a one-on-one interview at the ACC Football Kickoff in Greensboro, N.C.
But Golden said that day that Henderson was “absolutely not” suspended, and the situation was dealt with internally.
“We’re like everybody else on the planet when it comes to Seantrel,” Golden said during that interview.
“We want to maximize his ability, we want to maximize his talent and give him the skill set, the discipline, the strength, the explosion to be the type of player we know he can be.”
The Henderson situation could cause some position shuffling on the offensive line — and might already have. Jermaine Johnson, who played tackle on the scout team last season, is listed as the backup right guard behind Brandon Linder on the prefall depth chart.
But Sunday, Golden said Johnson is now playing tackle.
Also, on Saturday during Day 2 of camp, Jon Feliciano practiced during the first 15 minutes of media viewing at right tackle, Henderson’s usual spot.
Feliciano was moved to left guard in the spring and said Sunday that he is still a left guard.
“I just like to stay ready for whatever they need me at,” Feliciano said Sunday before practice. “It’s cool. It really doesn’t affect me. Whatever the team needs me to do.”
Listed on the depth chart behind Henderson as the second-team right tackle is freshman Ereck Flowers, but Feliciano said Flowers is “the starting right tackle now.
“He’s looking really good for a freshman,” Feliciano said. “He’s getting better every day.”