Hurricanes

Miami Hurricanes Football: We got some Chains over here!

In one of the most complete and dominant performances in years, the Miami Hurricanes destroyed Notre Dame in primetime 41-8. This game was over at halftime as the Irish were blitzed by the speed of the Hurricanes and simply had no answers all night.

After beating Virginia Tech in the previous week, the Miami Hurricanes entered their matchup with Notre Dame ranked seventh in the nation. ESPN College GameDay was on campus in Coral Gables for the first time ever, and the hype for this game dominated the local sports media all week. The Hurricanes faithful did not disappoint and set the stage for the most important game for Miami since 2002.

Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens was electric leading up to kickoff. The Hurricanes 13 game winning streak going in was the longest in college football. Miami was ready to prove “The U” was back.

Hurricanes legends packed the sidelines and gave this squad a glimpse of what this game meant not only to them, but the whole Canes family.

Miami won the toss and deferred, letting their dominant defense take the field. The Hurricanes almost broke out the Turnover Chain right away with a deflected pass over the middle. Notre Dame was able to move the ball and quarterback Brandon Wimbush missed a deep shot that could have gone for a score. Miami held and would force a punt and take over with just under 12 minutes left in the first quarter.

On the ensuing drive Malik Rosier was given some easy throws to move the chains and get into rhythm. Unfortunately as has been the case all year the Hurricanes stalled on third down and punted after Rosier missed Ahmmon Richards on third and five. After a Miami punt the defense would again stand tall as Jaquan Johnson stuffed a reverse on third and three.

When Miami got the ball for their second drive they picked up a huge third and seven with a well timed screen to Travis Homer.

Rosier got it going with his feet on consecutive carries to move Miami within striking distance. Then the most consistent Hurricane all year, Braxton Berrios, made Hard Rock Stadium quake.

Berrios has broken out in his senior year and been a favorite target for Rosier in crucial situations. When Notre Dame got the ball back down 7-0, the Miami crowd had to sense what was next.

 

Rosier wasted no time and made the Irish pay for waking up the Chain. 14-0 Hurricanes.

His ability to run has made Rosier a dynamic weapon and taken the pressure off of Homer. He finished with 44 yards on nine carries and the touchdown. The run/pass option has given the Hurricanes offense another wrinkle and expanded the play calling for Richt. The real story of the first half was Miami’s defense which was feeding off of the crowd and flying to the football. Notre Dame could not sustain any drives and Miami added a field goal in the second quarter for a 17-0 advantage.

Even when Miami couldn’t score they flipped field position with effective punts by Zach Feagles. His punting put the defense in great position and Malek Young helped the Hurricanes take advantage.

Miami would have to settle for a Michael Badgley field goal and a 20-0 lead. Notre Dame benched Wimbush and brought in backup quarterback Ian Cook to try and provide a spark before halftime. This did not go as planned.

Miami would go into the locker room up 27-0. After a convincing win against Virginia Tech, Miami wanted to again make a statement against a top ranked opponent. The media was not convinced that Miami was elite due to their close victories against inferior competition. This game would erase all doubt.

The second half was more of the same as Miami’s defense was simply too fast and athletic for Notre Dame. Irish running back Josh Adams had no room to run, and due to the score received only 10 carries for 40 yards. A crucial key to the game was going to be Notre Dame’s offensive line against Miami’s front seven, this was no contest. Miami would finish with five sacks and nine tackles for loss. Manny Diaz dialed up constant pressure and the Hurricanes speed overwhelmed Notre Dame for sixty minutes.

Travis Homer had another superb game finishing with 18 carries for 146 yards. DeeJay Dallas has found a home in the backfield and picked up his first career touchdown in the third quarter.

Dallas would add a second score in the fourth quarter and had 53 yards on 12 carries in the game. Notre Dame would only manage one meaningless touchdown when the outcome was already decided and only compiled 261 yards of total offense. On a national stage Miami lived up to the hype and put on a dominant performance from start to finish. The home crowd was a huge factor and the atmosphere reminded fans of the Hurricanes glory days in the Orange Bowl.

When the College Football Playoff rankings come out on November 14th it will be interesting to see where the committee will rank the Hurricanes. After a performance like this it will be hard to place them outside of the top four. Miami also clinched the ACC Coastal for the first time and will meet Clemson in the ACC Championship on December 3rd.

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