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Colleges

Safety earns high praise

Staff
Published:   |   Updated: March 20, 2013 at 06:02 PM
CORAL GABLES -

If you want to get Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher smiling, even when he's obviously angry about what he just saw on the practice field, ask him about starting safety Lamarcus Joyner.

Instantly, a smile appears ear to ear.

"Oh, he's playing great," Fisher said. "Lamarcus Joyner is playing fabulous. He loves to play. If we practiced out here for 12 hours he'd stay here for 12 hours and play."

Joyner moved from cornerback to safety during the spring and instantly rose to first team on the depth chart. The former USA Today Defensive Player of the Year said he feels more at home at his new position since it's where he played during his prep career.

He knows at 5-foot-8, 202 pounds, he doesn't have the prototypical size of a college safety. But he thinks his background at corner is a benefit in this pass-happy era of football.

"People always talk about my height," said Joyner, who had 23 tackles and led the Seminoles in personal fouls a season ago. "I feel like I have an advantage because I can drop down and cover these shifty guys in the slot. I also have the ball skills and the talent level — the vertical — to jump up with those big guys."

Corey Clark, Tallahassee Democrat

Miami tight end expects bigger role

Miami tight end Chase Ford makes no excuses: He failed to meet expectations. After drawing comparisons to Jeremy Shockey before arriving on campus last fall, Ford had little impact.

The junior-college transfer, now a senior, has another shot to produce.

"It was an honor to be compared to a player like (Shockey)," Ford said. "It wasn't like I was thinking about that or anything like that. The season just didn't go well for me."

Ford caught seven passes for 96 yards and a touchdown last season. With an improved comfort level this season, those numbers could grow.

More opportunity should come under first-year tight ends coach Brennan Carroll. UM is out to make the position more important in the offense.

South Florida Sun Sentinel

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