University of Miami

UM defensive players have highlight moments in scrimmage

UM linebacker Raphael Kirby.
UM linebacker Raphael Kirby. AP

The Miami Hurricanes were given off Friday, a day after they scrimmaged for the first time since fall camp opened Aug. 6.

Hurricanes defensive coordinator Mark D’Onofrio wouldn’t reflect on how he thought his D performed until he watched film, though judging by his players, there were several bright moments.

“There were a lot of good plays,” said starting linebacker Jermaine Grace, who cited middle linebacker Raphael Kirby for forcing running back Gus Edwards to fumble and for “a sack on a blitz,’’ safety Rayshawn Jenkins for “a pick six,’’ himself for “a sack on a blitz’’ and freshman nose tackle Kendrick Norton for “three sacks.’’

“He’s a beast,’’ Grace said of Norton.

Jenkins, elaborating on his interception (he wouldn’t say which quarterback): “We were in coverage. My responsibility was the flat. I kind of baited him. I sat inside like I was the hook player and then at the last minute, when I saw him shoot his eyes to the X receiver, I shot straight to the flat and picked it.

“I think we did pretty well.’’

Said D’Onofrio: “I don’t want to sound like a broken record but we have to watch the film. It’s the first scrimmage. We played probably 45 guys out there — about 20 series. I think we played the [third-team] five of those series and we played the fours one series. The [first-team] and [second-team] probably got seven series each.

“We played a whole lot of people. We’ll just watch the tape, see who stood out and reset the deck based on how they performed.”

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