Hurricanes' top QBs hurt; top backup unavailable

CORAL GABLES — Jacory Harris isn't the only Miami quarterback who's injured. His backup A.J. Highsmith is, too.

Coach Randy Shannon confirmed Highsmith has an injured left hand/wrist. Highsmith, who wore a brace on his wrist, was on the field for practice Wednesday, but the sophomore didn't take any snaps and did nothing "as far as contact."

Shannon said he didn't know the extent of Highsmith's injury, noting, "We just have to monitor it and see where it's at."

Junior Spencer Whipple, also the holder, will be the No. 2 quarterback Saturday at Duke. With Harris slowed by a sore shoulder and pulled groin and Highsmith hurt, Whipple played the final series against Florida State on Saturday.

Whipple and Highsmith alternated series during the second half of the opener against Florida A&M. Whipple, son of offensive coordinator Mark Whipple, transferred from I-AA Massachusetts, where he said he was the fourth or fifth quarterback. Last season, he was Miami's scout team player of the year.

"Nothing has really changed for me. I've just been preparing the same way all year," said Whipple, who is 4-for-6 for 32 yards with no touchdowns or interceptions this season. "That's the way I like to prepare; to be ready for anything that happens whether you're sixth on the depth chart or one or two."

More snaps: Shannon said freshman LB Kelvin Cain will get increased playing time behind starter Colin McCarthy on Saturday.

Injuries: Reserve G Joel Figueroa (shoulder) and starting DT Josh Holmes (knee) didn't practice and likely will sit out their second straight game.

South Florida Sun Sentinel

UF: Meyer sets rules for Rainey's return

GAINESVILLE — Florida WR Chris Rainey returned from suspension to practice this week but will not see action in games until he fulfills two stipulations.

Coach Urban Meyer said the junior will perform an undetermined amount of community service and show he can refrain from incendiary comments.

Rainey, who on Saturday will sit out his fifth game, pleaded to a misdemeanor stalking charge on Sept. 27 after he was charged in connection with a threatening text message he sent to a former girlfriend.

Before that, he stirred controversy during interviews, most recently in August, when he said last year's team featured a lot of "prima donnas."

"Chris has a history of opening his mouth and careless things coming out," Meyer said. "Obviously, this is the first time (he said) anything like (the threat). … Chris is not a violent person."

Meyer said he was in "constant communication" with Florida president Bernie Machen and athletic director Jeremy Foley as Rainey's case proceeded.

Injury update: OL Jon Halapio (right middle finger) is probable for Saturday's game against Mississippi State, Meyer said. Halapio had surgery this week and should practice at full speed today. … Meyer said RB Jeff Demps (sprained foot) is much improved and he expects the junior to play. Demps did not play last week against LSU. … After being limited last week, QB John Brantley (ribs, right thumb) has practiced at full speed, Meyer said. … Freshman SS Matt Elam (concussion) has not been cleared to practice this week, safeties coach Chuck Heater said.

Tyler Jett, Times correspondent

FSU: Work continues on BC game plan

TALLAHASSEE — The Seminoles spent most of a 2½-hour practice working on red zone and third-down situations.

"It was a tough day," coach Jimbo Fisher said. "(Boston College) brings a lot of blitzes and does different things on offense. Our guys did a good job — both sides. The offense got some. The defense got some. You could see the guys competing and having fun doing what they're doing."

Normal again: Wednesday marked the second straight practice in full pads after Monday's in shorts and helmets. Fisher said he has been pleased with the way the team has responded.

"We had everybody out there practicing, and they were banging and clanging," he said. "They were getting after it a little too much. They were having fun bouncing."

Injury update: FSU should have all of its tailbacks available for Saturday. Jermaine Thomas (toe) and Ty Jones (ankle) were at full speed along with Chris Thompson. All three haven't played together since Sept. 25 against Wake Forest.

Times wires

fast facts

Up next

USF: at West Virginia, 7:30 tonight, ESPN

FSU: vs. Boston College, noon Saturday, ESPN

Miami: at Duke, 1 Saturday

Florida: vs. Mississippi State, 7 Saturday, ESPNU

UCF: vs Rice, 3:30 Oct. 23, BHSN

Hurricanes' top QBs hurt; top backup unavailable 10/13/10 [Last modified: Thursday, October 14, 2010 1:27am]

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