Miami Hurricanes key to winning Pinstripe Bowl is stop Wisconsin run

MIAMI GARDENS, FL - DECEMBER 30: Jonathan Taylor
MIAMI GARDENS, FL - DECEMBER 30: Jonathan Taylor /
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Getting Wisconsin into third and long will get the Badgers out of their comfort zone on offense. What was an Achilles heel for the Miami defense in 2017, became a strength this season. The Hurricanes led the nation in third-down defense.

Miami opponents converted just 23.7 percent of their attempts on third down


Wisconsin was mediocre offensively on third down. The Badgers were 55th in FBS in third-down conversions offensively at 40.85 percent. Getting Wisconsin into third and long will be the key. Facing the nation’s top third down defense, top passing defense and leading defense in tackles for loss plays right into Manny Diaz’s hands.

Hard to believe as it is, Wisconsin’s passing offense was even worse than Miami’s this season. The Hurricanes finished 109th in the country averaging 177.3 passing yards per game. Wisconsin is 116th averaging 164.8 passing yards per game.

The will almost definitely come down to making Coan beat the Miami defense. The Badgers will be without starting quarterback Alex Hornibrook who was very successful against the Miami defense in the Orange Bowl last season.

Hornibrook threw for four touchdowns last season without an interception to earn the game MVP. Miami cannot make a star out of Coan like they did out of Hornibrook last season.

Next. Miami and Wisconsin have had equally bad QB play in 2018. dark

A stout pass rush, limiting Taylor and the Badgers ground game and putting Coan into positions he’s not comfortable will help Miami’s opportunistic defense. If Miami can do that, the turnover chain should make it’s Yankee Stadium debut a few times in the Pinstripe Bowl.