Even though they led 14-3 rather quickly the defense was being hit with some trick plays and other gimmick plays to use their pursuit and speed against them. But that could only work so many times.
From that point on, the ‘Canes dominated with the most impressive offensive performances of the season as they blew out Wake Forest 47-17 to improve to 8-1 on the season with two big time home games remaining on the schedule against Georgia Tech and Virginia and the conference championship against a Florida State team that has crash landed.
Coupled with Alabama's 16-13 overtime loss to LSU, the ‘Canes are one upset of Texas or USC from a spot in the Rose Bowl, the place UM won it's fifth National Championship.
While it's unlikely Texas or USC will lose, you never know so it's integral that Miami comes out the next three weeks and continues to dominate to finish the regular season 11-1.
Here are the top performers for the game against Wake Forest.
1. QB Kyle Wright – Wright looked absolutely fantastic. You'd almost hoped he'd have had the chance to get that sixth touchdown pass. His passes were crisp and accurate. The pass to Lance Leggett for a 76-yard touchdown was about as perfect a pass as he's thrown all year catching Leggett in stride for the easy touchdown. The pass to Sinorice Moss over the middle that gave Miami a 20-17 lead in the second quarter that gave Moss the opportunity to fly the rest of the way to end zone was a thing of beauty. Overall, he finished 17 of 27 for 319 yards and tied the school record with 5 touchdowns. You can't ask for much more. Well, he could. He really wanted the sixth. Maybe next time.
2. RB Charlie Jones – Jones continued to shine as he made the Demon Deacons feel him with his battering runs. He finished with 17 carries for 90 yards, a very nice 5.3 yards per carry average together with 2 touchdown runs. Jones has solidified himself as the clear-cut first team running back with the season injury to Tyrone Moss. And if Jones continues to play like this, Moss may not get the chance to win the job back when he returns next year because Jones combination of speed and power is something the ‘Canes haven't had since Willis McGahee.
3. WR Darnell Jenkins – Jenkins probably had the best game of his career wearing the orange, green and white. Jenkins, who was a highly touted wide receiver out of Miami Central high school, had not really had a break out game in his first two seasons. With 7 catches for 61 yards and a touchdown, he may have finally had that game that could springboard him to a great finish to the season. Jenkins made a number of catches for first down and didn't drop anything. Along with the rest of receivers, he was very impressive.
4. WR Ryan Moore – Welcome back Ryan Moore. After starting the season off pretty strong, Moore's numbers seemed to fall a bit. But Wright made sure he found probably the most important receiver on the team as Moore caught a beautiful deep ball when he stretched out for it. It led to a Miami touchdown. Moore finished with 4 catches for 88 yards and a touchdown.
5. WR Sinorice Moss – Moss only had two grabs for 65 yards and a touchdown, but his one grab over the middle was the game changer as he snatched a strike from Wright in midair, came down and sprinted down the right sideline blowing by all the Demon Deacons defenders looking more and more like Santana Moss. The 64-yard touchdown reception was probably the prettiest pitch and catch the ‘Canes have had all year.
1. LB Roger McIntosh – This guy is giving reminders of the linebackers that used to roam for the ‘Canes like Jonathan Vilma, Dan Morgan, Nate Webster, Ray Lewis, back to the days of Micheal Barrow, Darrin Smith, Maurice Crum and Bernard Clark. He's flat out everywhere on the field. McIntosh is turning himself into a sure fire first round draft pick because you can't teach the instincts that McIntosh has. He finished with 10 tackles and a fumble recovery in the win of Wake Forest and seemingly was in every big play.
2. LB Jon Beason – Beason laid the wood a number of times to Wake Forest running back Chris Barclay. He led the team in tackles with 12 and was all over the field similar to McIntosh. It was definitely the best game Beason has played all year as once he made contact the ball carrier was going down.
3. S Kenny Phillips – When the ‘Canes defense was looking rather bad in the first quarter, it was Phillips who was seemingly making every tackle in the first quarter because he seemed to be last man in defense, but he did a great job taking down defenders en route to 10 tackles and a fumble recovery.
4. DE Calais Campbell – Campbell is becoming one heck of a pass rusher on the end as he recorded a sack and three tackles, two of them for loss. At 6-foot-8, Campbell may very well end up being one of the best defensive ends ever at UM because he's very athletic, has extremely long arms and can really move.
5. S Brandon Meriweather – Meriweather saved an early touchdown when he kept the Demon Deacons' receiver from scoring on the quarterback throwback type play on Wake Forest's first possession. He finished with five tackles, 1 for loss and also had one of the three interceptions the defensive backs made.
Rudy Rodriguez-Chomat is a Staff Writer with CanesTime and can be contacted by emailing him at email@example.com
Top Performers vs Wake Forest
Canes Time Top Stories
Miami vs. Virginia Tech HighlightsJerod Evans had 357 yards of total offense and 3 scores to lead the Hokies to a 37-16 win over the Hurricanes. Travon McMillian rushed for 131 yards and Bucky Hodges caught 2 TDs…
Canes TimeYesterday at 9:59 PM
Post Virginia Tech: Mark RichtRead on to see everything head coach Mark Richt was saying following his team's loss to Virginia Tech Thursday night.
Canes TimeYesterday at 9:54 PM
Virginia Tech 37 , Miami 16Here are some game notes from Miami's 21-point loss to the Hokies.
Canes TimeYesterday at 9:52 PM
State of the Canes: DefenseThe Hurricanes are 4-2 and preparing to play at Virginia Tech Thursday night. Read on for a complete analysis of Miami's defense at this point in the season.
Canes TimeTuesday at 8:15 PM