Freshman Friday: Gregory Rousseau

Freshman Friday: Gregory Rousseau

Cory Grimes
Freshman Friday
We’re less than 24 hours away from the start of fall camp on Greentree, and my heart is already pounding with anticipation for this football season. Big things are on the horizon and tomorrow is the start of a new chapter in the story of Hurricanes football. For right now, it’s Friday, and I have a guy who didn’t feel like waiting for fall camp to make his presence known. He had the offensive line doing the Searels’ Shuffle throughout spring practice. I’m told he’s human, but I’m still not convinced. Freshman Friday welcomes defensive end Gregory Rousseau.

Scouting Report
CMR has been quoted saying, “he’s the nicest guy in America,” in reference to Gregory Rousseau, but the opposition will tell you there ain’t nothing nice about Rousseau on the field. The 6’6, 250 pound defensive end, and 2017 state champ, is one of the most intriguing prospects you’ll ever come across. He played much of his high school career as a wide receiver and he was more so around 220 pounds at the time. It’s not hard to imagine what kind of problems that caused for high school defensive backs. He was even 2nd team all-state as a wideout in 2016. He also spent a lot of time in the secondary running sideline to sideline at the safety position. Eventually, he ended up being a stand up defensive end/linebacker, where he excelled purely off of athletic ability and helped lead his team to a 2A state title with Champagnat Catholic. Needless to say, Rousseau probably could have played just about any position on the football field and done it well. I wouldn’t be surprised if he could throw it too.

Considering his background as a skill position player, the now full-time defensive end can obviously run. Often times with a guy of his stature, you’d expect his movements to be somewhat methodical and smooth, but I don’t see that with Rousseau. He’s an extremely explosive and twitchy player. He’s still obviously learning the nuances of playing defensive line, but his get off is so dang good that he was already an effective pass rusher before he even learned how to do a pass rush move. He is able to get past the heels of the offensive tackle before they even get out of their stance, and at that point, they might as well start apologizing to the QB because the sack is on the way. We got a glimpse of this in the spring. He ruined portions of scrimmages because he made a home in the backfield before the offense could get a play off. The offensive line simply couldn’t keep up. Once he’s able to add some moves and counter-moves in his arsenal, to go with his natural gifts, he’s going to be just about unblockable with one man.

2018 Predictions
Rousseau was considered a bit of a project to some coming out of high school. No one was quite sure how long it would take for him to get comfortable playing in the trenches, but I think Stevie Wonder could see the upside in this guy. Since the beginning of 2018, Rousseau’s progression has been nothing short of sensational. As I alluded to earlier, he’s gained around 30 pounds and counting since he enrolled in the spring. From what we saw in spring practice, we recognize how his time with Coach Jess Simpson has already added to Rousseau’s game. He’s gone from a defensive line project with huge upside to an elite pass rusher in several months at UM, and this is only the beginning.

On top of the physical evolution of Greg, he has immediately become a prominent figure in the locker room. In the podcast earlier this week, Dmoney mentioned Rousseau’s understated yet star-like personality that guys seem to gravitate towards. He was active at Paradise Camp hanging around some of the top recruits. He just seems like a guy who gains respect from everyone without saying much because he has such a strong presence. Rousseau will be a leader in the locker room and one of the faces of the program for years to come.

Gregory Rousseau, Joe Jackson and Jonathan Garvin make one of the best pass rushing trios in the ACC. That’s without mentioning senior Demetrius Jackson who will be another great leader and player on the defensive front. I think these guys could put up some huge sack numbers this year. I think Rousseau, in particular, could see around 10 sacks. I am interested to see what kind of player he will be in defending the run, but with this guy, I don’t think there’s much he can’t do. Overall, I see Rousseau as being one of the best players on Miami’s defense by the end of the year. He will soon become the source of nightmares for ACC quarterbacks and a household name nationally. Guys like this aren’t born every day. If the NCAA football video game ever came back, Rousseau is the kind of player I’d create. And if his game on the field is anything like mine is on the sticks, let me tell you Canes faithful. We are in good shape.
 

Comments (20)

Great DE room. The weight gain is mostly muscle mass. If he keeps 90% of his speed.....
 
10 sacks?

Ok........

If that is the case we f****n
 
10 sacks equals an AA Freshman of the Year! Bring it on...
 
Im gonna go ahead & let the guy play one real game against a tackle without down syndrome 1st.

This was my thought. I am sure he will be a great player. But he has been going against what is almost unanimously agreed to be our team's weakest unit. Let's see how he does out of the gate against first team OL
 
Great write-up @Cory Grimes! Is it safe to assume it's a lean 250? I hope he doesn't outgrow being a DE.

Absolutely a lean 250. All the weight he put on was muscle. I saw him at Paradise, and he looks like a sculpture from head to toe. There’s been nothing to suggest that this new weight has taken much away from his athleticism at all.
 
Absolutely a lean 250. All the weight he put on was muscle. I saw him at Paradise, and he looks like a sculpture from head to toe. There’s been nothing to suggest that this new weight has taken much away from his athleticism at all.
Never ceases to amaze me how an excellent S & C program coupled with a nutrition regimen can make such a profound difference in a short period of time. Thanks!
 
Every year we keep out doing ourselves at the DE position and we finally peaked with Rousseau bc it really can’t get no better than him in terms of how high his floor and ceiling is at the same damn time, Julius Peppers level.

And Jon Garvin was considered possibly a bigger freak than Joe Jackson last season... all 3 are 1st round talents. Combined with DJAX, and Patchan is the best we’ve probably ever had on the roster at the same time.
 
Our defensive ends, including Rousseau - should help develop our DT's.

If our DT's could hold up pretty well against our DE's - we should fear no one on the outside.
 
No mention of Patchan in this write up. He too seems finally healthy and his weight is up to 250. It’ll be a 5 man rotation at DE.

Can’t wait to see this group dominate. I’ll be at JerryWorld to see their debut!
 
That is a lot of high praise.

And the scariest thing about it is I believe all the hype.
RIP opposing Qbs we have to face this year. They do not know what is coming.
 
Never ceases to amaze me how an excellent S & C program coupled with a nutrition regimen can make such a profound difference in a short period of time. Thanks!

Yup. A lot of these S Florida kids don't have good nutrition in H.S. or even access to good S & C. Couple those two things with typical physical maturation from 18 - 20 years old and you sometimes see dramatic transformations.
 
No mention of Patchan in this write up. He too seems finally healthy and his weight is up to 250. It’ll be a 5 man rotation at DE.

Can’t wait to see this group dominate. I’ll be at JerryWorld to see their debut!

Good point. Keep in mind DJack can play inside so I expect to see him playing inside a lot on passing downs and thus opening some reps for Patchan at DE potentially.
 
If he adds a spin move to the inside, we'll see Jerome Mcdougal stats sooner than later.
 
Let's just hope the middle holds strong. We are rarely short on bad ass DEs rushing the outside...we have to hope there is no soft underbelly leaving it only to the line backing core to hold up.

UM
 

2021 Commits

S
6'5"
220
Fort Lauderdale, FL
DT
6'4"
255
Miami, FL
OG
6'2"
295
Miami, FL
DT
6'4"
290
Miami, FL
DE
6'5"
210
Miami, FL
WR
6'2"
180
Miami, FL
RB
6'0"
225
Hollywood, FL
TE
6'4"
210
Frisco, TX
STR
6'3"
190
Melbourne, FL
S
5'11"
200
Miami, FL

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2020 Schedule

09/10
UAB
Miami Gardens, FL
W 31 - 14
09/19
Louisville
Louisville, KY
W 47 - 34
09/26
Florida State
Miami Gardens, FL
10/10
Clemson
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Pittsburgh
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Virginia
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NC State
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Virginia Tech
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11/21
Georgia Tech
Miami Gardens, FL
11/28
Wake Forest
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12/05
North Carolina
Miami Gardens, FL
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