The defense continued to impress during the Miami Hurricanes' third week of spring practice, which included two practices and a one-day delay for the scheduled Tuesday workout.
Considering the repeated struggles in recent years, defense has been and will continue to be a focus for the 'Canes. Reddit College Football was tweeting out 2014 team slogans, and the new mantra for "The U" was certainly humorous.
Miami Hurricanes: Now with 100% more defense!— RedditCFB (@RedditCFB) March 26, 2014
If the opening weeks of spring ball is any indication, Miami will actually have 100 percent more defense.
There are still four practices and two scrimmages before the spring game on April 12, though, so the 'Canes offense still has time to make waves of their own.
The inevitability of college football is injuries happen. Avoiding severe bumps and bruises, on the other hand, is crucial, and the Hurricanes have escaped those to this point.
Probable starting linebacker Alex Figueroa exited practice early due to a shoulder scare. According to Matt Porter of the Palm Beach Post, Golden is not overly concerned about it, saying "I don’t have any reason to believe it's severe. We want to be prudent when it's a reoccurring injury."
#UM LB Alex Figueroa walked off in middle of practice. Al Golden said it was shoulder-related.— Susan Miller Degnan (@smillerdegnan) March 26, 2014
Olsen Pierre, a returning starter as a defensive tackle, is currently sidelined with a non-specific injury.
DT Olsen Pierre has "a head thing," Al Golden said, and should be back soon. He has missed four practices.— Matt Porter (@mattyports) March 26, 2014
Per Porter, Golden said Pierre "probably won't make the scrimmage, but he'll be good after that."
Wide receivers Herb Waters and Malcolm Lewis were full practice participants for the first time this spring. Tight end Clive Walford donned a yellow jersey, signifying limited contact after wearing red, no-contact attire for the first two weeks.
Duke Johnson, Joe Yearby, Braxton Berrios, Shane McDermott, Ladarius Gunter and Rayshawn Jenkins are the six remaining unavailable players.
Still in red: Johnson, Yearby, Berrios, S. McDermott, Jenkins, Gunter.— Matt Porter (@mattyports) March 26, 2014
ESPN's Andrea Adelson highlighted Duke's offseason workouts, adding 10 more pounds to his already solid frame. Adelson said Johnson has not run full speed but he feels "a lot more powerful and stronger" than he did before the ankle injury.
Position Battles, Black and Orange Jerseys
Ryan Williams is still leading the quarterback battle. With that being said, Golden gave a full update on the race, courtesy of Christy Cabrera Chirinos of the South Florida Sun Sentinel.
Golden said Kevin Olsen is "getting better and is starting to close ground, but right now, Ryan is ahead of Kevin and Kevin is ahead of Gray."
Per Chirinos, Golden complemented sophomore tight end Standish Dobard. Walford and Beau Sandland have been slowed by injuries, so Dobard has taken plenty of reps and also caught a touchdown.
"He prepares really hard. He wants to do well," Golden said. "Stan gives us a real physical presence on the line of scrimmage but can get down on the field and make plays. Real excited about Stan right now."
247Sports' Christopher Stock (subscription required) notes Golden complemented sophomore wide receiver Stacy Coley's work ethic, preparation and intensity:
[Coley is] one of those guys that you have to pull him out. He'll go as hard as he can for as long as he can and that's a great trait to have. The great ones have that. He’s raised the level of play there and everyone is trying to catch him.
According to Porter, the following are wearing orange jerseys, denoting offensive team leaders: LT Ereck Flowers, LG Jon Feliciano, RG Danny Isidora, WR Stacy Coley, WR D'Mauri Jones, K Matt Goudis
And black jerseys for defensive team leaders: LB Denzel Perryman, LB Alex Figueroa, LB Raphael Kirby, LB Thurston Armbrister, CB Tracy Howard and S Jamal Carter
Linemen 'Catching' Punts, Helmet Cam, Upcoming Schedule
Spring practice is serious, but the 'Canes had some fun last Saturday, sending out linemen to receive punts.
For some, like Ufomba Kamalu and Sunny Odogwu, it didn't go so well. Jon Feliciano, on the other hand, will be giving Stacy Coley a run for the starting job. Of course, that's a joke.
Thanks to a Schutt Vision helmet, Ryan Williams recorded a two-minute drill and provided an interesting look at exactly what a quarterback sees.
Miami will have an open practice on Friday, March 28 at Cobb Stadium before its first closed-doors scrimmage takes place on Saturday, March 29. The 'Canes will hold another workout on Tuesday, April 1 at GreenTree.
Follow Bleacher Report CFB Writer David Kenyon on Twitter @Kenyon19_BR.