Graig Cooper Has Multiple Dimensions
After last night’s great Florida State/Miami game, lots of folks are focusing on Jacory Harris — rightfully so — or the glitter girls or “edgy” t-shirts designed to
make douchebags look even more douchey piss opposing fans off. But, for my money, the story was Graig Cooper and the hand he played in Miami’s last three scores. First, there was the nifty 63-yard kick off return that put the Canes in a position to at least kick a field goal (they did). Cooper followed that up by scoring Miami’s last two touchdowns, securing one of the harder-fought wins of the opening college football weekend.
Cooper’s first touchdown came from a glorious receiver route that left his defender looking awfully silly. Those fake inside moves are killers, folks. The move left Cooper so wide open in the end zone, you could’ve walked and hand-delivered the ball to him and Florida State still wouldn’t have been in position to make the stop. And then there was Cooper’s 3-yard, game-winning scamper that gave the Hurricanes the permanent lead. Granted, it was Harris’ 40-yard bomb to Travis Benjamin that set it up, and Cooper simply followed his blockers into the end zone, but seeing how Miami failed to score from two yards out a few possessions prior (the drive set up by Cooper’s long kick off return), he deserves accolades here as well.
By my count, Cooper had a direct and measurable impact on all of Miami’s final three scoring drives and therefore, he deserves as much of the attention as anyone. It must be that amazing, amazing hair he and a number of his Hurricane teammates share, making the “Sampson theory” even more plausible.
While Cooper’s individual stats might not be as eye-popping as other stud performers from the weekend — 31 yards rushing on seven attempts, 24 yards receiving on two catches — he did have 232 total yards, the majority of which came from kick off returns. This, of course, put the Hurricanes in good starting field position time and time again.
The question is, going forward, is Miami “back?” While the jury’s still out on that one, see me after they play Oklahoma, if Randy Shannon continues to use weapons like Cooper to his advantage, they may very well be.