Miami Hurricanes offensive tempo versus NC State time of possession critical

Oct 16, 2021; Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA; Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 16, 2021; Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA; Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports /

The Miami Hurricanes offensive tempo versus the ball control of North Carolina State will be critical when the teams kick off at 7:30 PM on Saturday at Hard Rock Stadium. Miami is in the top 20 offensively in plays per game. North Carolina State ranked 17th nationally in time of possession averaging 32:17.17 per game.

The Miami Hurricanes offense has not been nearly as productive this season as expected with 10 starters back. Miami has lost four of those starters for the remainder of 2021. Quarterback D’Eriq King, left guard Jalen Rivers, center Corey Gaynor and running back Cam’Ron Harris have suffered season-ending injuries.

Tyler Van Dyke has replaced King at QB, Navaughn Donaldson has moved from right guard to LG, Jakai Clark is at center and Jaylan Knighton, running back. Halfway through the 2021 season more than a third of the Miami offense has turned over from the opener against Alabama. Not surprisingly inconsistency has followed.

North Carolina State is led by QB Devin Leary and RB Zonovan Knight. Leary missed the game against Miami last season with an injury. Miami held Knight to 13 carries for 45 yards and one reception for five yards offensively. Knight did have a 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown to put NC State in front 38-31 in the third quarter.

Leary is making a run for ACC player of the year completing 67.3 percent of his passes for 1,534 yards, 15 TDs and two interceptions this season. Knight has 503 yards rushing this season and is averaging 6.1 yards per carry. Emeka Emezie and Thayer Thomas lead NC State in receiving and Devin Carter provides a deep threat.

North Carolina State is 52nd nationally in total offense averaging 425.3 yards per game. The Wolfpack are 43rd averaging 260.3 passing yards per game and 67th averaging 165 rushing yards per game and 46th averaging 4.67 yards per carry. NC State is built around their stout defense.

Next. Miami will be tested by stout NC State defense. dark

The NC State defense is one of the best and most improved in the country in 2021. Miami shredded the North Carolina State defense last season for 44 points and 625 yards. This year is likely to be more of a struggle. NC State is sixth nationally allowing 14.3 points per game and 11th allowing 292.7 yards per game.