Miami Hurricanes first to hold Virginia Tech below 200 rushing yards in 2020

MIAMI, FLORIDA - OCTOBER 05: (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
MIAMI, FLORIDA - OCTOBER 05: (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /

The Miami Hurricanes defense is the first in 2020 to hold Virginia Tech under 200 yards rushing.

Virginia Tech entered the game on Saturday with the Miami Hurricanes averaging 277.43 rushing yards per game leading the ACC and fifth nationally. After the Hurricanes held the Hokies to 160 yards on 41 carries, the Virginia Tech per game rushing average dropped to 262.75 yards per game still leading the ACC.

The Miami defense is the first to hold Virginia Tech below 200 yards rushing in 2020. The Hokies were also held to a season-low 3.9 yards per game. Miami is the first team to hold Virginia Tech below four yards per carry this season. The Hokies’ previous lows this season were 201 rushing yards against Liberty.

Wake Forest held Virginia Tech to its previous season-low 4.5 YPC. The Miami defense was able to limit one of the best rushing offenses in college football without starting defensive tackle Jared Harrison-Hunte and linebacker Zach McCloud. Miami was missing five defensive linemen in total in the victory over Virginia Tech.

Limiting the Virginia Tech run was critical in the Miami victory. The Hurricanes run defense struggled against the run earlier this season. In four of its first five ACC games this season, Miami had allowed over four yards per carry. Opponents have failed to reach four YPC in three of the last four games.

Miami is now fourth against the run in the ACC allowing 149.75 yards per game. Miami is sixth in the ACC allowing opponents 4.1 YPC. Virginia Tech had run for over 300 yards three times this season. The Hokies averaged over five YPC in all but two games. Four times Virginia Tech averaged at least six YPC.

Considering the opponent and how elite Virginia Tech was on the ground entering Saturday, the Miami run defense performed at an elite level. Nearly a third of the Virginia Tech rushing yards came on a 53-yard touchdown run from quarterback Hendon Hooker. Hooker finished with 59 rushing yards on 21 carries.

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Virginia Tech starting running back Khalil Herbert who entered the game second in the ACC in rushing was limited to 49 yards on eight carries. Herbert returned after suffering a hamstring injury on the opening kickoff last week in the Hokies loss to Liberty. Jalen Holston had four carries for 36 yards and two TDs.