NCAA FB

Crawford an emerging gem for No. 7 Miami

Share This Story

   
 

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (AP)

(Eds: With AP Photos.)By TIM REYNOLDSAP Sports Writer

Dallas Crawford was a quarterback in high school, a scout-team defensive back in his first year at Miami, and little more than an afterthought as a second-string running back coming into this season.

He's in the spotlight now.

The most significant development for Miami's football program so far this season was Tuesday's news that the NCAA probe of the Hurricanes - and years of uncertainty about the mess involving former booster Nevin Shapiro - is now finally over. Perhaps the second-best development for Miami this year is the emergence of Crawford, who has run for two touchdowns in each of the Hurricanes' last four games.

And he'll have a key role in the game plan when No. 7 Miami (6-0, 2-0 Atlantic Coast Conference) hosts Wake Forest (4-3, 2-2) on Saturday.

''Everybody here has a lot of respect for Dallas,'' Miami coach Al Golden said. ''He just quietly goes about his craft and develops skills. He's got himself into great shape. He's lost weight. His body looks markedly different than when he first got here. He's quicker. He's certainly smarter in terms of his football knowledge.''

Golden said those words a few days before the NCAA's ruling in the Miami case was handed down. The university decided to not make Golden or his players available for comment since, and their first time speaking about the decision - or football, for that matter - will be after Saturday's game.

''Coach Golden always stresses a player having value,'' Crawford said. ''I just try to make myself as valuable as possible.''

The Hurricanes are unbeaten for plenty of reasons, and Crawford is pretty high on that list. Injuries knocked Miami's top running back (Duke Johnson) and wide receiver (Phillip Dorsett) out of the Hurricanes' most recent game, Oct. 17 against North Carolina, in the opening quarter. And quarterback Stephen Morris struggled mightily in that game, throwing four interceptions.

So the workload went to Crawford, who had 31 carries for 142 yards - total - in his college career before that game.

That night alone, he rushed 33 times for 137 yards, his two fourth-quarter touchdown runs saving Miami and letting the Hurricanes escape with a come-from-behind 27-23 win.

''He means a lot,'' Johnson said. ''Dallas came in as a (defensive back), then they moved him to receiver, then they moved him to running back. So Dallas knows everything on the field. He does everything he's supposed to do, the way it's supposed to be done, game in, game out, day in, day out. Dallas has come through for us in a big way.''

That's not just at running back, either.

Crawford has been a special-teams stalwart for Miami, excelling on kickoff coverage. The Hurricanes think running back is his best position, but more than anything else, he's just a football player, filling any number of roles.

''It's a crazy ride, but I was prepared for any adversity,'' Crawford said. ''I really haven't taken time and relished in the moment. I'll have time for that after the season. Right now it's just about winning games.''

The Hurricanes have basically asked Crawford to be their closer. He has 11 first-quarter carries this season, 13 in second quarters and 11 in third quarters. But in the fourth, sometimes with games on the line - like the North Carolina game - he's gotten the ball 23 times. For the season, he's run for nine touchdowns, and done so on only 58 total carries.

''It's always great recruiting those high school quarterbacks,'' Miami offensive coordinator James Coley said. ''In order to play quarterback, you have to know a lot of different things. You have to know what everybody else is doing. That's what's helped him understand the big picture. He found his role.''

Tagged: Miami (FL), Dallas Crawford

Related Stories

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by

College Football Pick'em on FOX


NCAA FB Videos

Sumlin annoyed by media's Manziel questions Posted: Jul 16, 2014
Kevin Sumlin responds to questions about life after Johnny Football by toying wi...

AJ Pasquale's journey back to UCLA Posted: Jun 17, 2014
UCLA football ops intern AJ Pasquale describes his own personal journey after th...

Winston issued adult civil citation Posted: Apr 30, 2014
Get the latest news surrounding Jameis Winston's recent shoplifting fiasco.

Get Inside the Locker Room with Scout.com

Fox Sports Store

    itemName itemURL imageSrc price itemDescription
    Nike Florida Gators Gridiron 2012 Team Issue T-Shirt - Royal Blue http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Florida_Gators/browse/featuredproduct/759777/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_759000/ff_759777_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Nike Florida Gators Gridiron 2012 Team Issue T-Shirt - Royal Blue
    Nike Michigan State Spartans Football 2012 Team Issue T-Shirt - White http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Michigan_State_Spartans/browse/featuredproduct/760171/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_760000/ff_760171_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Nike Michigan State Spartans Football 2012 Team Issue T-Shirt - White
    Nike USC Trojans Fight On My School T-Shirt - Cardinal http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_USC_Trojans/browse/featuredproduct/761373/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_761000/ff_761373_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Nike USC Trojans Fight On My School T-Shirt - Cardinal
    Nike Alabama Crimson Tide Elite Force Coaches Sideline Performance Polo - Crimson http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Alabama_Crimson_Tide/browse/featuredproduct/829709/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_829000/ff_829709_xl.jpg&w=100 64.95 Nike Alabama Crimson Tide Elite Force Coaches Sideline Performance Polo - Crimso..
    Nike LSU Tigers Elite Force Coaches Sideline Performance Polo - Purple http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_LSU_Tigers/browse/featuredproduct/829740/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_829000/ff_829740_xl.jpg&w=100 49.99 Nike LSU Tigers Elite Force Coaches Sideline Performance Polo - Purple
    Nike Oklahoma Sooners Legacy 91 Dri-FIT Adjustable Coaches Cap - Crimson http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Oklahoma_Sooners/browse/featuredproduct/830935/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_830000/ff_830935_xl.jpg&w=100 21.95 Nike Oklahoma Sooners Legacy 91 Dri-FIT Adjustable Coaches Cap - Crimson
    adidas Notre Dame Fighting Irish Hot Sideline Jacket - Navy Blue http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Notre_Dame_Fighting_Irish/browse/featuredproduct/861243/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_861000/ff_861243_xl.jpg&w=100 69.95 adidas Notre Dame Fighting Irish Hot Sideline Jacket - Navy Blue
    adidas Nebraska Cornhuskers Sideline Hot Quarter Zip Jacket - Scarlet http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Nebraska_Cornhuskers/browse/featuredproduct/861247/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_861000/ff_861247_xl.jpg&w=100 69.95 adidas Nebraska Cornhuskers Sideline Hot Quarter Zip Jacket - Scarlet
    Nike Alabama Crimson Tide 2012 BCS National Champions Players Locker Room Snapback Hat - Charcoal/Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Alabama_Crimson_Tide/browse/featuredproduct/1087345/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1087000/ff_1087345_xl.jpg&w=100 29.95 Nike Alabama Crimson Tide 2012 BCS National Champions Players Locker Room Snapba..
    Nike Alabama Crimson Tide 2012 BCS National Champions Locker Room T-Shirt - Ash http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Alabama_Crimson_Tide/browse/featuredproduct/1093431/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1093000/ff_1093431_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Nike Alabama Crimson Tide 2012 BCS National Champions Locker Room T-Shirt - Ash