Miami Hurricanes DE Jaelan Phillips Kirk Herbstreit Top Performers

Oct 10, 2020; Mandatory Credit: Ken Ruinard-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 10, 2020; Mandatory Credit: Ken Ruinard-USA TODAY Sports /

Miami Hurricanes defensive end Jaelan Phillips was named one of the top performers of the week by ESPN College Football analyst Kirk Herbstreit

Miami Hurricanes defensive end Jaelan Phillips was named the third-best player of the week nationally by ESPN College Football analyst Kirk Herbstreit. Phillips recorded eight tackles, 4.5 tackles for loss and 2.5 sacks in the 25-24 Miami victory on Saturday over Virginia Tech. Phillips has improved throughout the season.

In the previous game against North Carolina State, Phillips had 10 tackles, 1.5 TFLs, one sack and one pass backup. Phillips set season highs in TFLs and sacks in the win against Virginia Tech and his career-high for tackles against the Wolfpack. Phillips was the highest-ranked non-quarterback this weekend by Herbstreit.

Herbstreit broadcast the Miami games against Louisville, Florida State and Clemson earlier this season. Phillips has exceeded the numbers in the last two games than he had combined against the Cardinals, Seminoles and Tigers. Phillips combined for seven tackles, three TFLs and one sack in those three games.

Herbstreit called Phillips a monster earlier this season and predicted that the redshirt junior would become known nationally by the middle of October. Phillips ranks tied for12th nationally with 10.5 TFLs and tied for 21st with five sacks. Phillips has been a huge part of a Miami defense that has been dominant in the fourth quarter.

The Hurricanes allowed six yards in the fourth quarter against North Carolina State and 61 versus Virginia Tech. Miami is sixth nationally as a team with 67 TFLs and 11th with 23 sacks. The play of Phillips and DE Quincy Roche has helped Miami makeup for the loss of star DE Greg Rousseau who opted out for 2020.

Blake James expects Miami schedule to remain fluid. dark. Next

Phillips will be challenged to keep the momentum when Miami returns on December 5 after the next two weekends off. The Hurricanes battled COVID-19 for the games against NC State and Virginia Tech. Miami was without 11 players against the Wolfpack and 13 against the Hokies. The outbreak for the Hurricanes became too big.