Opponent Spotlight: Brandon Meriweather

Miami senior Brandon Meriweather is considered the best safety in college football by many analysts. The consensus preseason All-America leads the ACC's top-ranked defense against the run.

"He really ignites our defense," Hurricanes coach Larry Coker said.

As usual, the 6-feet, 195-pound prototypical safety leads Miami in tackles with 30 so far this season, a sack and an interception.

After moving into a full-time starting role at the beginning of 2005, Meriweather finished the season atop most of the Hurricanes' defensive charts. He led the team in tackles (114), solo tackles (76), tackles for loss (13) and tied for the team lead in interceptions (3).

With 133 career solo tackles, Meriweather is within striking distance of Benne Blades' school record for a safety of 155.

"Good tackling, great change of direction and great playing within the scheme of the defense," John Bunting said describing Meriweather. "You talk about a safety – he's who you think about. He's instinctive, and he makes plays."

As a high school quarterback, Meriweather led Apopka (Fla.) to the state 6-A championship in 2001. He also ran back four kicks for touchdowns.

An ankle injury shortened his true freshman season; however, he was awarded a medical redshirt although he played in three games. The following season he played in the first game and has been in every one since.

"Brandon loves to play the game," Coker said. "He's an emotional leader, he plays with a lot of energy, and Brandon is a very intelligent player."

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