Miami football can make program history at Pittsburgh

DURHAM, NC - OCTOBER 31:(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)
DURHAM, NC - OCTOBER 31:(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) /

The Miami football team can win consecutive games against ranked teams while unranked for the first time in school history according to Inside the U. Miami travels to Heinz Field on Saturday with a 3-4 overall record and 1-2 in the ACC. Pittsburgh is 6-1, 3-1 and ranked 17th in the AP and 19th in the Coaches Poll.

Unranked Miami defeated 18th ranked North Carolina State 31-30 at Hard Rock Stadium last weekend. The Hurricanes have a more difficult task against the Panthers on the road this week. Miami has not played ranked teams in consecutive games since losing to number one Clemson and number six Wisconsin in 2017.

The 2017 Miami football team entered the ACC Championship game against Clemson ranked seventh nationally and were 11th when they lost to Wisconsin in the Orange Bowl. Miami has not played consecutive games against ranked opponents since the memorable contests against Clemson and Duke in 2015.

Miami lost 58-0 to Clemson in 2015. Following one of the worst losses in school history, head coach Al Golden was fired. The next week with interim head coach Larry Scott leading the team for the first time, the Hurricanes took on the added emotion of cornerback Artie Burns playing less than a week after his mother passed away.

The games against Clemson and Duke came in the middle of four games against ranked teams in six weeks while Miami was unranked. With a new head coach and battling three pass interference calls on the last drive of the game that put Duke in front 27-24 with six seconds remaining, Miami found a way to win.

The Hurricanes infamous eight lateral touchdown return culminated by CB Corn Elder provided Miami with a 30-27 victory. Miami earned the victory over Duke playing with backup quarterback Malik Rosier. Starting QB Brad Kaaya was knocked out of the Clemson game with a concussion that caused him to miss the Duke game.

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Miami defeated Virginia 27-21 a week later but was defeated 59-21 at number 17 North Carolina in the following game. The Hurricanes finished 1-3 in that stretch against ranked teams in 2015. Scott led Miami to a 4-2 finish that included a 20-14 Sun Bowl loss to Washington State in a snowstorm in El Paso.