I really would prefer not to dwell on this too much, because it just feels like a common occurrence at this point. I am sure we are not the only school in America who is experiencing the wrath that is the "transfer portal", but it is the only one that matters to us.
It's not only that another player has entered the transfer portal, but it's also the position that player plays that is the most concerning. Former 4-star offensive guard Cleveland Reed has deciding to enter his name in the transfer portal. The Fort mead, FL native fell behind a few others this camp, after struggling to learn the playbook.
The offensive line has started to show a bit of progress, after Coach Barry and the rest of the coaches made a switch, moving right guard D.J. Scaife back to right tackle and bringing in little known freshman Jakai Clark to play guard. It seemed to work. The line played much better against UNC and completely dominated (as they should) against Bethune Cookman. But what's left behind those guys?
Kids like Kai-Leon Herbert, Zalontae Hillery, and JUCO transfer Ousman Traore will have to continue to develop to strengthen our depth. I am not fully convinced the rest of the bunch are close to contributing at all this season. I don't know many people who think they are.
As for tomorrow's matchup against Central Michigan, the Canes should have similar success on offense as they did last week.
The playing status for one of last week's top performers, wide receiver Mark Pope, is still uncertain. He suffered a leg injury in the second half last week against Bethune. If he can go, I am hoping to see him build off of last week's performance. Look for top tight ends, Brevin Jordan and Will Mallory to be more involved this week again. CMU does not have the best of secondaries, so look for the receivers and tight ends to eat.
On defense, I want to see how they respond after pitching a shutout. Will they revert to the mediocre defense we saw against North Carolina, or will continue to dominate against a poor Central Michigan squad? Canes fans are still waiting to see dominance from guys like Jon Ford, Gurvan Hall, and Jon Garvin, just to name a few. Will we see it?
Another player, who's playing status is still up in the air, is Romeo Finley. In my opinion, Finley has been the best player on the Canes defense this year. If he can't go, look for sophomore Gil Frierson to start at the striker position in his place.
Game time is set for 4 pm at Hard Rock Stadium.
There is some good news to come out of Coral Gables. It looks like the Canes defense will get a much need boost on the line very soon. Defensive tackle Nesta Silvera is set to return to the field for ACC play. I am not sure if that means he will be ready for Virginia Tech or Virginia, but it's a good sign nonetheless. USC transfer Bubba Bolden will also be back against Virginia Tech and ready to add some depth at safety for the Canes.
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