Will UM try to lure Hurts?
Alabama QB may follow OC to Miami
CORAL GABLES — New Hurricanes coach Manny Diaz has wasted little time in pursuing transfers he believes can make a difference at Miami.
Over the course of the past four days, both former USC safety Bubba Bolden and former Buffalo receiver K.J. Osborn have said they intend to play for Miami.
Now, UM could be on the verge of landing one of the best transfers available — Alabama quarterback Jalen Hurts, who reportedly entered his name in the NCAA transfer database this past week.
Friday night, the quarterback was spotted on Maryland’s campus, where he attended the Te r ra p i n s ’ b a s ke t b a l l game against Indiana with Maryland football coach Mike Locksley — who had been, until recently, Alabama’s offensive coordinator.
Locksley, though, isn’t the only former Alabama assistant who’s opted to take a job outside of Tuscaloosa since the season ended.
On Friday, Diaz announced former Crimson Tide associate head coach and quarterbacks coach Dan Enos — who had been a candidate to replace Locksley as OC at Alabama — would be Miami’s new offensive coordinator.
That has, of course, spawned plenty of conversation about the possibility that Hurts — who was 26-2 as a starter at Alabama — could join Enos in Coral Gables.
According to Canesport.com, Hurts is set to visit Coral Gables on Sunday. If that goes well, few would be surprised if Hurts — who has already graduated and is eligible to play immediately — ends up a Hurricane.
“I think he’s a great coach, a really smart football mind and I’m blessed to have him,” Hurts said of Enos just before the College Football Championship Game, according to Tuscaloosa News reporter Terrin Waack.
Of how Enos helped him during the one year they worked together at Alabama, Hurts continued, “Really polishing me up, taking me to the next level, getting better.”
Enos’ ability to develop quarterbacks is one of the major reasons Diaz said he wanted the coach on his staff. And Enos’ work with Hurts and fellow Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa — a Heisman Trophy finalist — helped the Crimson Tide have one of the top offenses in the nation in 2018.
Last season, Tagovailoa completed 69 percent of his passes, throwing for 3,966 yards with 43 touchdowns and just six interceptions. That set an alltime FBS single-season passer rating mark and made Tagovailoa one of the most decorated players in college football. He earned both the Walter Camp and Maxwell Awards.
Hu rts, meanwhile, completed 73 percent of his passes with eight touchdowns and two interceptions. His performance, combined with Ta g ova i l o a ’s efforts, helped Alabama rank first in the nation in passing efficiency, sixth in total offense and third in scoring offense.
That’s a marked difference from the productivity shown by Miami quarterbacks Malik Rosier and N’Kosi Perry, who alternated starts and were inconsistent throughout the season with neither completing more than 55 percent of their passes.
“Me hiring Dan is improving the quarterback situation,” Diaz said. “I think our guys that are on campus will benefit working underneath him.”
Rosier has graduated and left the Miami program. And the addition of Hurts would give the Hurricanes an experienced veteran that has been successful at a high level.
That’s something Perry and fellow quarterbacks Jarren Williams and Cade Weldon can’t offer immediately.
On Friday, Diaz was asked about the possibility of Hurts joining Miami and while he couldn’t comment specifically on the quarterback because NCAA rules prohibit coaches from discussing players they have not signed, Diaz hinted that graduate-level transfers would give the Hurricanes much-needed boosts at several positions.
“I can’t comment on any one player specifically, but we’re going to look from Miami to Maine, from Los Angeles to Seattle and anywhere beyond for the players that can help us play quarterback — understanding the ones we have on our campus, that we got to get those guys to maximize their potential and find out how good they really are,” Diaz said.
“We’ve seen the glimpses of what they really can be. Nothing has changed, really. Everything we talked about a week ago is still the same. Everybody wants to talk about quarterback, we know we have to get that fixed. But that’s true at every position. Where we feel like the team was deficient in any way, we have to go create competition and get the guys ready to compete right away.”
ccabr[email protected]sentinel.com; On Twitter @ChristyChirinos.
CORAL GABLES — In his one season as Alabama’s quarterbacks coach, Dan Enos helped groom Tua Tagovailoa into a Heisman Trophy finalist.
His other high-profile protege — Jalen Hurts — improved his game dramatically and came off the bench in the SEC Championship Game to lead the Crimson Tide not only to a come-from-behind win over Georgia and a conference title, but another berth in the College Football Playoff.
When former Alabama offensive coordinator Mike Locksley left Tuscaloosa to take the head coaching job at Maryland, all signs started pointing to Enos taking over as Alabama’s new offensive coordinator.
Then first-year Miami coach Manny Diaz entered the fray and offered Enos the opportunity to become the Hurricanes’ offensive coordinator.
Miami couldn’t offer up the roster of five-star prospects Alabama could. The Hurricanes’ quarterback s i t u a t i o n wa s u n d e r - whelming last season, with neither Malik Rosier or N’Kosi Perry doing enough to consistently hang on to the starting job. And Miami posted some of the worst offensive numbers in the country in 2018, a fact only highlighted by the Hurricanes’ dismal performance in their embarrassing season-ending 35-3 loss to Wisconsin in the Pinstripe Bowl less than two weeks earlier.
But somehow, with Alabama and even fellow SEC power Georgia interested, Diaz was able to bring Enos to Coral Gables. The hire, announced Friday, created a buzz not only among Miami fans, but across the southeast, where many college football fans couldn’t help but wonder why Enos would give up the opportunity to coach at a powerhouse program with a proven winner in Nick Saban to take over the offense at Miami.
Enos, himself, shared his thoughts on the topic Friday during a podcast with SportsTalk with Bo