Miami (5-4, 4-2 ACC) has fallen victim to the Hoos’ (3-6, 1-4 ACC) as of late. In 2011, the ‘Canes were stunned at home to a tune of 28-21.
Miami QB Jacory Harris threw for 311 yards and 3 touchdowns and WR Tommy Streeter totaled 176 receiving yards and 2 touchdowns. Despite the impressive numbers, the Miami defense was unable to keep the Cavaliers’ out of the end zone.
Saturday’s meeting has much higher implications for Miami. For the first time since joining the ACC, the ‘Canes have the opportunity to become the ACC Coastal champions. On the other hand, Virgina began this season with a dismal 2-6 record, however, the Cavaliers’ are coming off of an impressive 33-6 drubbing of North Carolina State.
Going into Charlottesville should not be overlooked by Miami. If anyone is capable of severing the ‘Canes hopes of a Coastal title it is certainly Virginia. Miami has lost four of the last six times that they have faced the Cavaliers’.
Some background information courtesy of CBS Sports.
– Virginia has held their last three opponents to 235 yards or fewer.
– Like Miami, attendance for Virginia games has been lacking and a noon kickoff won’t help. Hey, maybe Miami will think they are at home – could be beneficial, right?
– The Cavaliers’ secondary has given up 15 passing touchdowns on the season.
– RB Kevin Parks carried the ball a career-high 25 times against North Carolina State. He tallied 115 rushing yards and one touchdown. Parks leads the Cavaliers’ with 618 yards and four touchdowns.
– The Miami defense must cover WR Darius Jennings. Against North Carolina State, Jennings had six receptions for 57 yards and one touchdown. In 2011, he managed a 53-yard touchdown pass against Miami.
– QB Stephen Morris is averaging 264.9 passing yards per game.
– RB Duke Johnson is currently ranked third in the ACC averaging 146.7 all-purpose yards. He has been named ACC Rookie of the Week three times.
– The ‘Canes have allowed 218 rushing yards against their last eight opponents. They give up 246.2 rushing yards per game.
– Miami has improved in creating turnovers. Against Virginia Tech, the ‘Canes forced three turnovers.
Granted, Miami’s offense has been sputtering as of late and their defense has carried them on their backs. QB Stephen Morris must find his rhythm early on and WR Phillip Dorsett needs to get involved, be it on punt returns or through the air.
If the Miami defense can continue to force turnovers they should find themselves heading back south with a win. With S Deon Bush listed as ‘doubtful’ against the Cavaliers’, S Vaughn Telemaque is likely to get the nod.
Against a mediocre Virginia team, I expect Miami to come out victorious. However, I have a feeling that Miami fans can expect to see a close game – a lot closer than they would like.
When: Saturday Nov. 10, 12 PM ET
Where: Charlottesville, VA.
Favorite: Sportsbook lists Virginia as a 1-point favorite