Quadtrine Hill was listed as second-team fullback entering the 2002 football season, however due to Kyle Cobia’s injury prior to the first game, Hill has received more playing time then he could have imagined as a freshman. Miami started 12 new starters for their opening game against FAMU, including Hill. He continued on to start six out of the 8 games he has played so far this season.
“I feel things are going pretty good this season,” said Hill. “It’s great to be a freshman who starts, and being able to get on the field and play by itself is great. Everybody wants to play, and the best experience you can get is by getting on the field.”
Hill was red-shirted in the 2001 season. His main duties were to help the scout team and prepare UM’s defense for upcoming games. This year he practices with the offense, and Running Backs/Special Teams Coordinator Don Soldinger feels that he is a stronger player this year because of last year’s observation time.
“I don’t think he was expecting to play full back, but Kyle Cobia got hurt. He was expecting more to be a tailback, but I think he likes his role as a starter,” explained Soldinger. “And if he’s going to start, that’s where he needs to play.”
Against University of Florida, Hill rushed 3 times for 7 yards. However, at the West Virginia showdown, he received the ball 6 times and gained a total of 108 yards. His continuing total of yardage receiving in the 2002 season is 12 for 158 yards.
“The West Virginia game was the type of game where Q was catching the ball and running with it. I think that’s the most yardage a fullback has gotten since I’ve been here at this school,” exclaimed Soldinger. “The reason that happened is because he is like a tailback in the fullback position. So when he touches the ball, he’s a tailback, that’s what I like about him.”
Growing up in Miami, Hill always had the dream to attend school at UM. When they offered him a scholarship he was more than egger to jump on the opportunity. He now enjoys the fact that he is able to go home and see his family at ease whenever he wants to.
His father, Eddie, former Miami Dolphin running back, had a sufficient amount of influence over Quadtrine. Eddie is nearby at convenience to give his son tips and hints to improve his playing. A little inside information from his fathers’ hands on experience is always good to hear.
“Even though my father played for the Dolphins, I grew up as a 49ers fan. My favorite football player of all time is Jerry Rice,” Hill stated. “He has always been a great motivation with his work ethic. I have tried to put myself in those footsteps with his work ethic, and my father was also big on that. But definitely my biggest role model growing up was always my father.”
Soldinger is very pleased with Hill’s performance this season. He realizes how tough of a player Hill is, and his determination to succeed really shines through. His favorite quality about Hill is how he ties the skills of a tailback into his position of a fullback. He has worked with former UM players Najeh Davenport and Edgerrin James, and is able to find a slight comparison between them and Quadtrine Hill.
“He’s a little bit different than Davenport and James. Davenport had a fullback’s body and thought he was a tailback,” Soldinger explained. “Hill thinks he’s a tailback but he’s playing as a fullback, so it’s a little different. James played tailback. If I had a choice I would rather take a guy like Q and put him as fullback. He’s got tailback skills but he’s tough enough to block and do everything a fullback needs to do.”
Seeing how James and Davenport continued on to the NFL after playing at University of Miami, gives Quadtrine Hill a hopeful sense for his future. He does enter the game trying to follow up former players; his goal is to come into his own.
“My goal is to come in to do my best, and leave as a player people will remember,” explained Hill. “This year has turned out really well – I mean we’re winning, and that’s all I can really ask for.”
You can reach Dana Strokovsky at Hoopg1rl6@aol.com.