It’s dress rehearsal time for the Miami Hurricanes.
On Thursday morning, the Hurricanes will conduct a practice game against Bethune-Cookman.
Well, not exactly Bethune-Cookman, but UM scout team players who will be playing the part of Bethune-Cookman players.
And it won’t be a full game, UM coach Mark Richt said earlier this week. It will be one half.
But it will be played exactly like one half of football would be played, officials and all, special teams and all.
“We always do it approximately nine or 10 days prior to kickoff,’’ Richt said. “It’s a practice game against Bethune-Cookman. We’re integrating our offense, special teams…if it’s three-and-out, we’ll punt. We [usually] work on punt a lot separate, we [usually] work on offense separate, but we [usually] don’t transition from offense to punt or offense to field goal, or touchdown to kickoff, or their touchdown to kickoff return,’’ he said of fall camp.
“That’s what we’ll do [Thursday] for a half of football, just to get used to playing a game or trying to play a half.”
BURNS IS BACK
True freshman Robert Burns, an early enrollee who arrived in spring out of Gulliver Prep, has been cleared for contact, offensive coordinator Thomas Brown said Wednesday.
Burns hurt his shoulder the first day of contact during the spring, had subsequent surgery, and has been practicing all fall camp with a green, no-contact jersey.
“He’s full go,’’ Brown said. “He’s got a lot of ground to make up as far as the mental aspect of it and also physical as well. We’ll see how he does over the next week or so. He’s good to go.”
Brown indicated that backup running back Travis Homer, who has excelled the past two weekends in scrimmages, is impressing coaches.
Homer, a sophomore who played mostly on special teams last season, was put with the No. 1 offense last weekend to see how he’d do. Coaches are purposely taking it easy on talented starter Mark Walton, as that position is scary-thin and they need to keep Walton healthy, as well as give adequate work to the backups.
“I think the last scrimmage, trying to get Travis more reps with the ones [to] see how well he responded, was important,’’ Brown said. “From Day One Travis has been a very tough kid and very reliable. He had a couple nice runs. Seeing him in the open field break a couple tackles and make a couple guys miss, I feel really good about where he is.”
Walton said this week that he feels great physically.
“I was back in practice the next day after the hip [bruise],’’ he said of the minor injury sustained in the first scrimmage. “The injury has gone away. I’m happy for the season.’’
Walton said he was “more excited seeing the other guys like Travis make big plays and seeing him develop and seeing him take on our offense’’ during last Saturday’s scrimmage. “It ain’t about me. I was excited about seeing the other guys make big plays.’’
▪ Left offensive tackle Kc McDermott, who had his foot stepped on and sat out of practice for one day for precautionary reasons, was back on Wednesday. He was running with the others and appeared full go.
▪ Starting defensive tackle Kendrick Norton sat out of practice and was on a conditioning bike during media viewing.