Game Preview: #4 Miami vs. Georgia Tech

The last time these two teams met was in the 2000 Gator Bowl, in which the Hurricanes defeated the Yellow Jackets 28-13 behind Clinton Portis and James Jackson—both rushed for over 100 yards.

GAME 4 - PREVIEW
#4 Miami Hurricanes (3-0, 1-0 ACC) vs. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (2-1, 1-1 ACC)
Bobby Dodd Stadium – Atlanta, Georgia
October 2 – 3:30 PM Eastern on ABC Regional

The last time these two teams met was in the 2000 Gator Bowl, in which the Hurricanes defeated the Yellow Jackets 28-13 behind Clinton Portis and James Jackson—both rushed for over 100 yards.

Last game against Houston, the Hurricanes jumped out to a 24-3 lead in the second quarter behind the rushing of Tyrone Moss, who had a career-high 149 yards and two touchdowns. Brock Berlin passed for only 99 yards and was sacked five times, but the Hurricanes gained 172 yards on the ground and were never threatened by the Cougars. The Miami defense allowed its first touchdown of the season, a quarterback scramble by Kevin Kolb, as well as two field goals. The Miami defense and special teams contributed 14 points, with a blocked punt for a touchdown and a fumble return for a TD. Frank Gore added a touchdown before sitting out of the game with a sore knee.

Through three games, the Hurricanes have allowed only 23 points, with one of those touchdowns coming on a fumble return (the defense has given up only one touchdown and three field goals). Miami ranks third in the NCAA in total defense, 12th in rushing defense, fifth in pass defense, third in pass defense efficiency and fourth in scoring defense.

Georgia Tech won their opener 28-7 over Samford, then upset Clemson 28-24 on the road before being upset 34-13 on Sept. 18 at North Carolina.

HURRICANES PROJECTED STARTERS
Offense			       Defense
QB	Brock Berlin		LE 	Baraka Atkins
TB	Frank Gore		LT	Orien Harris
FB	Talib Humphrey	        RT 	Santonio Thomas
TE	Kevin Everett		RE	Thomas Carroll
WR	Sinorice Moss		SLB	Roger McIntosh
WR	Roscoe Parrish	        MLB	Jon Beason		
LT	Eric Winston		WLB 	Tavares Gooden
LG	Tony Tella		CB	Antrel Rolle
C	Joel Rodriguez	        CB	Kelly Jennings
RG	Tyler McMeans	        FS	Brandon Meriweather	
RT	Chris Myers		SS	Greg Threat	
PK	Jon Peattie		P	Brian Monroe
HURRICANE INJURY STATUS
OL	Rashad Butler		Ankle		Probable
FS	Brandon Meriweather	Hand		Probable
LB	Leon Williams		Hand		Probable
WR	Ryan Moore		Ankle		Out
FB	Kyle Cobia		Shoulder	Out
CB	Glenn Sharpe		Knee		Out
LB	Willie Williams	        Knee		Out	
CB	Terrell Walden	        ACL		Out
NOTABLE PLAYERS
Miami
QB #7 Brock Berlin		476 yards 59% 2 TD 2 Int
RB #30 Tyrone Moss		222 yards 6.9 avg 4 TD
WR #83 Sinorice Moss 	        5 receptions 123 yards 1 TD	
TE #84 Kevin Everett 	        7 receptions 82 yards
CB #6 Antrel Rolle		13 tackles, 1.5 sacks
SS #5 Greg Threat		30 tackles, 1 Int
PK #13 Jon Peattie		4-7 FG, 10-10 XP

Georgia Tech
QB #1 Reggie Ball		616 yards 54% 7 TD 5 Int
RB #45 P. J. Daniels		324 yards 5.3 avg 2 TD
WR #21 Calvin Johnson	        12 reception 217 yards 3 TD
WR #7 Levon Thomas 	        12 reception 213 yards 2 TD
LB #49 Gerris Wilkinson 	31 tackles, 1 Int
FS #22 James Butler 		17 tackles, 1 Int
PK #87 Travis Bell 		2-3 FG, 9-9 XP
NOTABLE TEAM STATISTICS

Georgia Tech – 26th in Rushing Offense (203.0)
Miami – 12th in Rushing Defense (80.3)

Georgia Tech – 77th in Rushing Defense (170.7)
Miami – 60th in Rushing Offense (155.0)

KEY MATCHUPS

When Georgia Tech has the ball…
QB Reggie Ball vs. DT Orien Harris

Ball (5-11, 190) is a mobile quarterback in his second year starting as the team's signal-caller. Last year he threw for 1,996 yards, 10 touchdowns, and 11 interceptions. This season he is off to a better start. On average, he runs the ball 10 times per game. Harris (6-4, 300) has been plugging the middle of the line this season. At times, he constantly sees double-teams, but manages to maintain pressure on the rushing game. He wants to force Ball into bad decisions.

When Miami has the ball…
QB Brock Berlin vs. FS James Butler

Berlin (6-1, 215) has not been as productive as the coaching staff would like particularly last game when he threw for 99 yards on 23 attempts. Coker has made it clear that there is definitely a possibility another quarterback could see time if Berlin does not produce. Enter James Butler. Butler (6-3, 215) is a preseason nominee for the Jim Thorpe Award as the nation's top defensive back. He mixes good speed in with good size—much like former Hurricane safety Sean Taylor. Last season he recorded five interceptions.

KEEP YOUR EYE ON

Georgia Tech DE Eric Henderson – Henderson is expected to make his season debut against the Hurricanes after suffering from an undisclosed injury. Last year he was named to the first-team all-ACC after leading the league in sacks with 11. He has at least one tackle for loss in his last 15 games.

Miami WR Roscoe Parrish – Parrish reportedly has had a good week of practice. He is a fast receiver the Hurricanes need to stretch the opposing defenses. When on his game he can be extremely tough to contain both before he gets the ball and after. He is expected to start at one of the receiver positions.

COKER'S FINAL WORD

On Georgia Tech's head coach Chan Gailey…

"He's a tremendous person and an outstanding football coach and a good hire for them."

PLAYER QUOTE OF THE WEEK

Running back Frank Gore on facing a team that has struggled to stop the run:

"Looking at them on tape they look pretty good. We can't judge a team by how other teams did against them. We just have to have the mindset that we have to keep running hard and following our reads"

Christopher Stock is a Staff Writer for CanesTime and can be contacted by emailing him at stock@canestime.com

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