Miami Hurricanes Defense Makes Key Stops in Win Over Toledo


They gave up 30 points, 429 yards and Toledo was 13 of 23 on third down, but the Miami Hurricanes defense made big plays in key moments in the 52-30 UM victory.

There were many key moments in the second half offensively that fans will point to, but the Miami Hurricanes bend but don’t break defense came up big in the red zone in the first half. Toledo had three trips into the red zone in the opening 30 minutes and came away with only three field goals.

The Hurricanes defense also toughened late. After Toledo began the game 13 of 18 on third down, Miami stopped them on their last five third-down attempts.

It was the second consecutive game Miami struggled getting off the field on third down. Bethune-Cookman was eight for 17 on third and two for two on fourth down in the opener. The Hurricanes were good late getting off the field, but it’s something that they must improve as the season evolves.

Miami plays its first road game of the season on Friday at Duke. The Hurricanes have to be able to stop the Blue Devils on the third down to be able to win. Defensive Coordinator Manny Diaz spoke about the Hurricanes third down woes defensively.

"“We could hardly do anything there for probably the second half of the second quarter. A lot of that was self-inflicted because of staying on the field on third downs.”"

The Hurricanes seemed to be cruising when they scored 28 unanswered points in the second half. The Hurricanes came up with a key turnover in the third quarter.

Leading 24-16 Miami defensive back Sheldrick Redwine recovered a fumble by Toledo quarterback Logan Woodside in Rockets territory. That earned Redwine the vaunted turnover necklace. Three plays later the Hurricanes got into the end zone. That turned a 16-10 deficit into a 38-16 lead.

Toledo then scored 14 straight points of their own. The Rockets followed up a touchdown with a 35-yard interception return to move the ball to the Miami eight-yard line. They scored on the first play of the drive to narrow the Miami lead to 38-30.

In addition to the one key turnover, the Hurricanes were also able to get to Woodside four times. The Miami defense recorded four sacks for a loss of 18 yards. The Hurricanes also had nine tackles for loss.

Toledo had averaged 218 yards rushing per game in their three season-opening wins. The Hurricanes did a great job stopping the Rockets running game. Toledo ran the ball for just 85 yards on 39 carries. That takes into account the sack yardage.

Taking away those four plays, the Rockets ran the ball 35 times for 113 yards. That’s just 3.2 yards per carry. There were quite a few encouraging things from the Hurricanes defense against one of the best offenses in the country.

Miami especially rose to the occasion in the second half. After rolling up 296 yards in the first half, Toledo managed only 133 after halftime. The Rockets had 77 of those yards on one drive.

Toledo’s other eight drives in the second half netted 47 yards. Their final three were for a net total of nine yards lost. The Hurricanes special teams also did a good job. Toledo averaged 18.8 yards on kickoff returns and had no yards on punt returns.

Toledo repeatedly hurt itself with penalties. That frequently helped the Miami defense. The Rockets committed ten penalties for 77 yards.

Sophomores Malek Young and Joe Jackson had career games. They each contributed career highs with seven tackles.

The play in the second half was encouraging. Being able to hold an elite offense like Toledo to 133 second half yards is stout. Miami will need a similar performance Friday.

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Duke is another elite offense with a stellar quarterback. Daniel Jones will test the Miami Hurricanes defense passing and running. A win means Miami will go into the Florida State game undefeated for the second straight season.