UM Opponent Breakdown: Nevada

Miami (6-6) will face Nevada (8-4) in the MPC Computers Bowl. Here is a breakdown of the Wolfpack.

Nevada

Record: 8-4
Conference: WAC

Rankings:
Rushing Offense 23rd 176.83 ypg
Passing Offense 74th 185.75 ypg
Total Offense 45th 362.58 ypg
Scoring Offense 19th 30.92 ppg
Rushing Defense 60th 136.92 ypg
Pass Efficiency Defense 38th 116.83 ypg
Total Defense 56th 327.58 ypg
Scoring Defense 35th 19.00 ppg


Stat Leaders:

Passing:
Jeff Rowe: 152 of 235 for 1,715 yards, 16 touchdowns and seven interceptions

Rushing:
Robert Hubbard: 189 att, 936 yards (4.95 avg), six touchdowns
Luke Lippincott: 92 att, 456 yards (4.95 avg), nine touchdowns

Receiving:
Caleb Spencer: 52 catches for 536 yards and two touchdowns
Marko Mitchell: 38 catches for 466 yards and three touchdowns
Mike McCoy 21 catches for 326 yards and nine touchdowns

Defensive:
Ezra Butler: 62 tackles, 5.5 sacks
Joshua Mauga: 55 tackles, two interceptions
Joe Garcia: 49 tackles, six interceptions
JJ Milan: 9.5 sacks
Nick Hawthrone: four interceptions


Special Teams:
Punting: Zacary Whited- 39.4 yards per punt
Punt Returns: DeAngelo Wilson- 15.2 yards per return
Kickoff Returns: Dwayne Sanders- 25 yards per return
Field Goals: Brett Jaekle- four of seven field goal attempts

Preview:

The Nevada offense scheme wise is one you won't see very often. The Wolf Pack run a "pistol" spread offense. What this means is that the quarterback is in a shortened shotgun position with the running back behind him. Unlike in other shotgun systems where the running back is either on the right or the left, the alignment really doesn't change in the pistol offense.

The advantages are that you aren't limited to what runs you can use, you can slide protections easier and it is something defenses aren't use to seeing. You get the advantages of the one back and shotgun formations all in one. Urban Meyer has used this offense from time to time as well.

Quarterback Jeff Rowe isn't asked to carry the offense but he has been effective this season. Rowe has completed over 64% of his passes for 1,715 yards and 16 touchdowns. 5-11 senior Robert Hubbard and 6-2 sophomore Luke Lippincott will carry the load in the backfield. Hubbard does a little bit of everything and will be used in the passing game as well. Lippincott is an ex-safety who brings great strength and toughness to the fold.

The receivers are deep and experienced. Senior Caleb Spencer is the leader of the group while sophomores Mike McCoy and Marko Mitchell have stepped up this season. Jack Darlington is the usual fourth receiver in the spread look. Tight ends Anthony Pudewell and Adam Bishop have been productive as well. The offensive line has had an up and down season and will have its hands full with an athletic Miami defensive line.

The Wolfpack defense is a multiple front who will move back and forth between a 3-4 and 4-3 defense. The defense has not been strong is big games and is coming off a tough performance against offensive juggernaut Boise State. The front line is led by defensive ends J.J. Milan and Charles Wilson.

Milan has racked up a team leading 9.5 sacks this season. The star of the defense is outside linebacker Ezra Butler who has tallied up 62 tackles and 5.5 sacks. Sophomore weakside linebacker Joshua Mauga has stepped up this season with 55 tackles, two interceptions. Linebackers Jason Engstrom and Jason Demars give the group versatility with defensive schemes.

Cornerback Joe Garcia is the top player in the secondary and one of the few NFL prospects on the team. Garcia combines good size and athletic ability and already has six interceptions on the year. Safety Nick Hawthorne has also been strong this year with four interceptions and 48 tackles.

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