With a win over the Canes’ rivals, South Florida, Miami would clinch bowl eligibility. If the Hurricanes beat USF and Duke to close out the season, they could fight for the ACC championship — if their own school lets them.
For the second straight year, Miami could enforce a self-imposed postseason ban. The program is trying to prevent further penalties from NCAA sanctions stemming from improper pay and benefits for players from 2002-2010.
The USF-Miami game also features some top NFL draft prospects. Check out who to watch:
Seantrel Henderson, Miami, Tackle
This junior offensive tackle and former No. 1 overall high school recruit hasn’t had the career he might have expected so far at Miami, but that could change this week against USF. He didn’t begin the season as a starter, but that lack of field time isn’t because of talent. Off-field issues and injuries have limited his time for the better part of three seasons, but if the talented 6-foot-8, 350-pound behemoth can get his head on straight, he could be one of the top tackles in college football. Henderson has great footwork at the position and shows great power in his run blocks.
Brandon McGee, Miami, Cornerback
McGee is an underrated prospect who has had off-field issues of his own. After starting all of last season, Miami head coach Al Golden didn’t like what he saw during the Hurricanes’ preseason and bumped McGee down to fifth on the depth chart. He’s worked himself back up and has had a great senior season. McGee is incredibly fast, being timed as low as 4.29 in his 40-yard dash this summer, and shows off a great backpedal and smooth hips. He doesn’t have the quickest instincts, and his run defense leaves some to be desired, but he can make up for those deficiencies with this legs.
Cory Grissom, South Florida, Defensive Tackle
Grissom is the top prospect on the USF Bulls squad. He’ll be viewed as a bit of a tweener since he plays like a 4-3 penetrating tackle or 3-4 defensive end, but he’s built like a nose tackle. Grissom generates pressure with his strength, and he has surprising quickness for his 6-foot-2, 318-pound frame. Grissom has just 2 1/2 sacks on the season, but don’t let his stats tell the full story. He generates regular pressure in the middle of the South Florida defense and can be a force in the middle when he’s asked to control multiple gaps against weaker offenses. If he’s asked to play nose tackle in the NFL, he’ll need to pack on more bulk. He could be a nice fit as a sub package penetrating defensive tackle.
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