Canes coach Manny Diaz on N’Kosi Perry
University of Miami redshirt sophomore backup quarterback N’Kosi Perry was not at the first part of practice Wednesday, but he returned for most of the session.
A UM spokesman said Perry was “dealing with a personal matter,’’ and coach Manny Diaz said after practice that “N’Kosi had a personal issue he had to attend to and he was out there by Period 9 [of 23 periods].“
“He’s been very good. He’s been very supportive of [starter] Jarren [Williams],’’ Diaz said. “If you watch the two of them on the sideline during games — just watch N’Kosi’s demeanor during games — he has been very professional.’’
Diaz would like to play a lot of players Saturday in the 4 p.m. home opener against Bethune-Cookman at Hard Rock Stadium.
When asked if that includes quarterbacks, Diaz said, “Every position would be involved in that, yeah.’’
Perry, who started six games last season, lost the starting job in August to redshirt freshman Williams and has not played this season.
Williams has done well his first two starts for UM (2-0, 0-1 Atlantic Coast Conference), completing 49 of 69 passes (71 percent) for 523 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions.
Perry went 4-2 as a starter in 2018, completing 97 of 191 attempts (50.8 percent) for 1,091 yards and 13 touchdowns with six interceptions.
“Me and N’Kosi are like best friends,’’ Williams said Wednesday after practice. “He’s never complained. He’s a guy that, he always comes out and he works hard. He has never shown any kind of hate or emotion. If anything, he’s always coaching me up trying to help me.
“When I come off to the sideline he’s like, ‘Hey Jarren, on that play keep two hands on the ball.’ He’s a very positive influence on me, so N’Kosi has been really great for this team and for this program.
“He’s a guy that we can count on.’’
Fellow redshirt sophomore Tate Martell, also listed as a quarterback, has changed positions to primarily wide receiver — though he practiced all offseason as a quarterback and knows the playbook.
Besides Martell, UM still has 6-4, 204-pound true freshman scholarship quarterback Peyton Matocha of Houston.
Matocha could play up to four games this season and still preserve his four full years of playing eligibility.
The Canes also have walk-on quarterback Carson Proctor, a redshirt junior from Vero Beach, who started his career at Arkansas and transferred to Coffeyville Community College before UM.