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 10 years ago '04        #4301
booie4 
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CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- Miami Head Coach Randy Shannon discusses this week's opponent as Miami prepares to play Virginia Tech.

************************************************** ***

Opening Statement

"This week's opponent is Virginia Tech and we are coming off an off-week and we got a lot done during the off week and we got healthy again. Virginia Tech, watching them on film, they are basically the same Virginia Tech that we have been facing and we know for years. Coach Beamer and his staff have done a good job of getting those guys going and it is tremendous when you watch them on film of how they stay with the same things that they have been doing for so long and so many years and they are successful at it.

News & Notes

? Shannon said this year's Virginia Tech team is no different. The Hokies want to force their opponents to stop the run and beat them with their passing game. "They are going to stop the running game and make you throw the ball to their receivers, which is their strength with both of their corners doing a fantastic job covering guys."

? The Virginia Tech offensive gameplan doesn't really change no matter which quarterback is in the game, Shannon said. Virginia Tech is always a run-first team. "They are going to run the ball 30 to 40 times a game and throw the ball 15 to 22 times a game. No matter who is in the game that is what they are going to do."

? Miami won't change their gameplan either. Their goal offensively will be to run the ball well and play a ball control type of offense. "You have to be able to run the football. A one yard gain or two yard gain is a great play in a game like this. Don't take negative plays and that is one thing we have to concentrate on.

? A "huge" emphasis during the bye week was the tackling and wrapping up by the defensive secondary. Shannon said the run support of the cornerbacks and safeties will be key against Virginia Tech. "We worked a lot on the corners coming up in run support for the tackle and that is a tremendous thing we are going to have to get done," Shannon said. "They have to step up and get in the mix of run support. That is one thing that will show on how much we worked on that when they step up."

? Virginia Tech unveiled a type of wildcat offense which the ball was directly snapped to their tight end. Shannon says his team didn't spend too much time gameplanning for that look. "You can't prepare for everything," Shannon said. "You have to look at what they do basic and stay within what you are trying to get done. All the players start looking for that and then their running plays that you forget about turn into 20 or 30 yard plays."

? Offensive lineman Reggie Youngblood is "playing pretty well" with his injury, Shannon said. "He came into the Virginia game and did a tremendous job for us when Fox got hurt. He is starting to get back into the trend of it."

"This year he has given it his all. He had an opportunity to redshirt, but he wanted to play for the players on this football team and he has stepped up and he has showed that even though I had a chance to come back, I want to be with you guys and finish this off the right way. That says a lot about him and his character."

? This will be the first Thursday night game these freshmen will experience, but Randy says he isn't concerned about how they will handle that atmosphere. "They don't look at that," Shannon said. "They just like to go out and play. They are like gym rats. They come in to watch extra film. Yesterday they had the Sean Taylor classic here and if they didn't go home, most of them were watching those little kids play football. They always like to be around football and really nothing phases these guys."

? Gino Torretta, Edgerrin James, Jim Otto, Cortez Kennedy, and Jim Kelly will all be added to the University of Miami ring of honor Thursday night. "It will be exciting for the university to honor some great guys. There is a lot of things that goes involved in picking those guys. Those are guys from different eras that should be honored and there will be more guys that will be honored."

"When Kirby Hocutt came in he said this would be a good time going into a new stadium and new everything to bring that back."

? With a strong turnout against Virginia Tech, Miami has a chance to average more than 50,000 fans per home game this season, which would be a more than respectable first year at Dolphin Stadium. "I think with the facility and the big TV screens...those things are a big part of the stadium. Everything is always great with the stadium and the fan support has been good this year."

? With a lot of the freshmen playing this year, Shannon said his recruiting pitch to the 2009 class still doesn't really change. He still tells recruits that if they are good enough, they will play. "The recruits that are interested in Miami can see that if you do your job and prepare the right way, the coaches are going to give you an opportunity to be successful," Shannon said. "It is not going to be one of those deals where I am going to tell you what you want to hear, but I am not going to show it to you."

 10 years ago '04        #4302
booie4 
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By no means is this week's Thursday night game against Virginia Tech going to be easy, but if Miami continues to execute their gameplan that has won them their past four games there is no reason the Hurricanes should lose.

Miami's formula during this current four game winning streak has been simple: stop the run on defense and get off the field on third down.

Most of UM's success these last four games is due to the play of the defense.

Coming out of halftime the Miami defense has been stout. During this four game winning streak, UM has allowed just a total of 21 points. Miami has responded to the halftime adjustments of defensive coordinator Bill Young and that has shown by keeping opponents off the scoreboard in the second half.

During Miami's first five games of the season, the defense allowed a total of 75 points in the second half.

The other defensive statistic Miami has vastly improved in this winning streak is their third down defense. UM's defense struggled to get off the field early in the year, but lately they have done a very good job of forcing opponents to punt.

In their last four games, Miami's third down conversion defense has been 15-of-62 (24%). That number is vastly improved compared to the conversion success UM allowed against Florida, North Carolina, and Florida State who combined to convert 54 percent of their third downs.

A key this week against Virginia Tech for the Miami defense will be stopping the run. Virginia Tech ranks 113th in passing offense, but averages 172 yards per game rushing. The Hokies' offense is predicated on the run.

During the four game winning streak, Miami's has done a very good job of limiting the ground game by allowing their opponent's leading rusher to average just 15 carries for 69 yards.

These successes in stopping opponents from scoring in the second half and getting off the field on third down go back to what Coach Randy Shannon has been preaching all season long: finish.

If Miami's defense continues their strong play in these final three games, UM will finish the season on a very good note.

 10 years ago '04        #4303
booie4 
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CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- For offensive lineman Orlando Franklin, Miami's bye week going into the Virginia Tech game couldn't have come at a better time.

The week off gives many of the players to heal up their nagging injuries and clean up their mistakes from the week before.

"The bye came at a real good time, so we can get back to where we need to be with our legs," Franklin said. "The little nicks here and there can get healed for the last three games of the season."

One of the mistakes Miami's offensive line continuously committed during the Virginia game was false start penalties throughout the game. During that game, Miami committed seven false start penalties.

If UM wants to continue this winning streak, costly mental mistakes that turn into penalties like false starts cannot be tolerated.

"Those penalties just happen that way and it was a loud place, so we just have to try and concentrate more as an offensive line," Franklin said. "It is just wanting to hit somebody before they hit you. Football is a game of leverage and striking ability and we were just trying to get that edge."

During last week's practice time, Franklin said UM used the week off for extra film study. Miami's offensive line will have to be sharp this week as they prepare for a Virginia Tech team that is very good at getting to the quarterback.

Virginia Tech has totaled 22 sacks on the season with 60 tackles for loss on the year.

"Nobody was really looking at it as a bye week," Franklin said. "Everybody was just looking at it as a chance to get a lot better for next week's opponent. We had an extra four or five days to prepare for them, so we are taking advantage of that situation and watching more film so we can break them down a little bit more."

Franklin says that going into the Virginia Tech game that the confidence of the young team is on the rise, but they still know they have the tough task at hand of ending the last three games of the season without a loss.

Miami is currently in a tie for first place for the Coastal Division and has a chance to compete for an ACC Championship with a strong end to the season.

"There is confidence, but we are still not there yet. We are going to continue to do the little things and continue to work on that stuff. We aren't going to look at it as we have won a couple of games and now lets relax. We are going to keep playing as if we are 2-3."

 10 years ago '05        #4304
Deeangoe 2 heat pts
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so who going to the game this thurs?

 10 years ago '04        #4305
booie4 
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CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- Wide receiver Tommy Streeter was one of Miami's top recruits in the 2008 class.

While a number of his fellow freshmen receivers are making plays--including high school teammate Aldarius Johnson--Streeter has been watching from the sidelines.

Streeter, a 6-foot-5 and 202 pounds, had season-ending surgery on his wrist in August and has been watching the team from the sidelines.

Two weeks ago, he had his wrist brace removed and began stretching with the team during practices, but is not practicing.

"He is just rehabbing, that's all he's doing," coach Randy Shannon said on Tuesday. "He's not practicing or anything. He probably won't practice until the spring time."

Streeter caught 36 passes for 676 yards and 11 touchdowns as a senior at Northwestern in 2007. He proved to be an elite receiver with excellent speed as he caught 25 touchdowns in his final two seasons as Northwestern won back-to-back state championships.

He chose Miami on signing day in a tight recruiting battle over Oregon, South Florida, South Carolina, and Boston College.

When Shannon was asked if he expected Streeter to be an impact player at Miami, Shannon responded: "Don't know, that's a long time away."

 10 years ago '04        #4306
booie4 
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CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- With the prospects of left tackle Jason Fox playing this week looking slim, look for Matt Pipho to be a regular part of the rotation against Virginia Tech.

When Fox went down with his ankle injury in the second half of the UVA game, it was Pipho (6-7, 307) who came in for relief of Fox and helped fill that void.

The playing time Pipho received at the end of the Virginia game was by far the most he had played in his UM career.

"Obviously I was sad to see Fox go down, but I have been waiting all season to get some playing time and the coaches put me in and I had a good time," Pipho said.

According to offensive line coach Jeff Stoutland, Pipho stepped in and did a very good job against Virginia.

"He is just waiting for his opportunity," Stoutland said. "He was in the two-minute drill in the last game and did a fantastic job. We have guys coming off the bench and this is something we work at all year. We try to work on the depth because this time of year you have injuries and guys have to be ready to go in. We have some young guys who are taking it to heart and doing what we ask them to do."

This season is the first year Pipho--a junior from LaPorte City, Iowa--has played tackle for Miami. In his first three seasons Pipho focused more on guard and center.

Pipho says he likes the change to tackle this season and feels more comfortable at that position.

"The biggest difference is the pass protection," Pipho said. "You are just dealing with 240 pound guys instead of 340 pound guys. That is a lot different and on running plays you have to set edges while on the inside you have to get vertical movement. It is different but it seems a little bit easier for me to do that so I am liking the transition."

"I have pretty much got it all down. There are just a couple of things I need to perfect."

When asked about how prepared he will be to go up against a non-stop pass rush from a group of Virginia Tech defensive linemen who are some of the most athletic defensive ends in the in the country, Pipho says that going up against Adewale Ojomo each day in practice will have him more than prepared for Virginia Tech.

"I go up against Adewale everyday and I haven't seen nothing like him. His bull-rush is pretty good and last week we played against Virginia and their linebackers averaged about 270 pounds, so I think

 10 years ago '04        #4307
booie4 
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CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- The stats show it. Miami's defense has been vastly improved since the beginning of the year.

During UM's recent four game win streak, Miami has allowed opponents to convert just 24 percent of third downs and allowed just 17 second half points.

According to senior linebacker Glenn Cook, Miami's defensive improvement is just a product of the work the unit has put after starting the year slow.

"Third down defense was horrible for us in the beginning and we improved on all that," Cook said. "We have shut out pretty much every team in that four game winning streak in the second half, nobody has really scored. I think those are things we look at that we have improved."

"We went out and did something about it and fixed it and now we just continue to get better."

As for UM's ability to keep teams from scoring in the second half during the four game winning streak, Cook says it isn't really about second half adjustments, it is more about guys calming down at halftime and knowing their a.ssignments.

"Honestly we never really make that many adjustments. It is really just us calming down so we can do our stuff. It is just like let's do it and for some reason we haven't started strong. We have worked on finishing a lot though and we have been doing that pretty well."

If there has been a time that the UM defense hasn't been consistent during the four game winning streak, it has been in the first half. Cook attributes that to guys being too excited at the beginning of the game and not focusing on their a.ssignments.

"Maybe we come out a little too excited and too hyped and we get away from the fundamentals, but we worked on that last week, just wrapping up," Cook said. "Hopefully we can come out and start fast and eliminate that tough start."

Cook says the Virginia Tech gameplan is basically the same every year because they never really change their offensive scheme. Virginia Tech executes an offense that establishes a physical running game and builds a passing game off of that. Cook says UM will have to get back to the fundamentals on defense to control the Virginia Tech offense.

"We are not going to be confused. We just have to man up and make plays. They are going to run the ball, get some blocks on special teams, and get a return on us, so we just have to be real sound and we have worked hard in the running game with the special teams."

"You have to understand that is something they are good at every year. We have really been preparing this week with our getting of blocks and technique stuff just to be ready because they are going to come after us. That is what they do."

 10 years ago '04        #4308
booie4 
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CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- When you stack up the meaning surrounding Thursday's game against Virginia Tech, this might be the biggest game of Javarris James' career.

The game is being played primetime on a Thursday night, his cousin Edgerrin James will be inducted into the ring of honor, and a Miami win keeps them in the thick of a hunt for an ACC Championship.

There are many reason's why this week's game will be special for James.

"There is going to be a lot of people in my family that are going to be in the stands," Javarris said of Edgerrin being inducted into the ring of honor. "It is an honor for him and for me to be on the team and get a chance to see him go up there and now every time I am in the stadium I can look up there and see him and hopefully one day I can get myself up there."

"You are going to have a chance for the rest of the guys around the nation see what you got. Especially with playing a good opponent, there is going to be a lot of people watching so it gives us a chance to showcase our talent."

A big performance by Javarris James and the running backs will go a long ways to Miami controlling the Virginia Tech defense and coming out with a win.

Virginia Tech currently ranks 16th in the country in run defense, allowing just 103 yards per game rushing and nine touchdowns this year. James says he knows the importance of establishing the run Thursday night.

"We have definitely been talking about that," James said of establishing the running game. "One thing Virginia Tech is known for is stopping the run and the running backs and offensive line watched extra film this week to make sure we can get a running game going."

"They have a very aggressive defense and we don't want to put too much pressure on our young quarterbacks. If we can get a running game going, it can help those guys out a lot."

Dealing with a high ankle sprain since the second game of the season, James has been limited this year and is still searching for his first 100-yard game of the season. After playing a couple games on his ankle, James says he feels very close to being back to 100 percent healthy and he is ready to let his play show how good he can be when healthy.

"It feels good to be out there and helping my team," James said. "Watching on the sidelines, you learn a lot of things, but you want to be out there. Since my injury I have realized how my team needs me and hopefully from here on out I can have a healthy year."

As Miami heads into the Virginia Tech game on a four game winning streak, James talked about why he thinks Miami has recently finished games off and why he believes UM will finish the season on a strong note.

"Coach Shannon has emphasized f!ghting and guys not quiting and not giving up," James said. "They have gotten that into our heads since last year and I think it is starting to come around now and guys are believing into the team. As you can see throughout the whole game, guys are teaching each other and we are growing completely."

 10 years ago '04        #4309
KiNgJaMeS305|M 58 heat pts58
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i think it is very important for us to be ranked at the end of the season. DOnt know y wea re not right now, i feel we are better than several teams int eh top 25.

got to be rooting for maryland this weekend. we have to come with intensity against VT. ACC champ. game would be huge for us

 10 years ago '04        #4310
madness 21 heat pts21
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cant wait til the game....dolphin stadiums gonna be rockin and the whole country will be watchin:applause:

 10 years ago '05        #4311
Deeangoe 2 heat pts
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 madness said
cant wait til the game....dolphin stadiums gonna be rockin and the whole country will be watchin:applause:
yup yup..i got the day off work cuz i dont think i woulda be able to kept myself calm at work...so ima head out to the stadium round 3-330 and then come 730...its on

 10 years ago '04        #4312
booie4 
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CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- Robert Marve hasn't shaved and he's starting to resemble the GEICO caveman. As long as the 'Canes continue to win, it could get worse, but winning is all that matters.

He can't remember the last time he's shaved and he's planning on growing his hair out. It's just a coincidence that the 'Canes have been winning since he stopped grooming himself.

"I am going to grow my hair out and let it get long. I don't remember the last time I shaved, it's been a while back," Marve said.

Let's just see how long it gets. Hopefully, another win and the hair will continue to grow. What's on tap is Virginia Tech on Thursday and Marve will need to get the 'Canes off to a good start for the 'Canes to have a chance to knock off the Hokies.

And the fact the 'Canes got a week off between the Virginia and Virginia Tech games is something that Marve is happy with.

"It's been great, just body refreshed. When you are in game atmosphere, your body breaks down pretty bad. It's a big time game, I am really excited," Marve said. "It's going to be a big time game for us, looking forward it and hopefully we come out with a win."

It's the last game at home this year before finishing out of the season on the road with games at Georgia Tech and N.C. State.

"It's our last game at home and we want to end with a bang at home," Marve said. "It's a night game so it's going to be live, going to be kicking and going. You play high school games at night. It's fun to play night games. Football is football no matter what day you play. We are going to be ready and prepared."

Marve has been impressed with the Hokies on film as well and he knows he needs to be ready.

"They are very good. They have very good schemes. They are very well coached. They have a lot of old guys out there," Marve said.

That's not Marve taking a shot. That's him calling the Hokies and experienced team, one far more experienced than Miami.

"We just have to be consistent with whatever we're doing. I think the run game is always big for our offense. It lets us flow so much better. We are looking forward to having Baby J and Cooper running it," Marve said. "I just want to win. That's all that matters to me."

 10 years ago '04        #4313
booie4 
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CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- Defensive tackle Marcus Forston knows how important his play will be during Thursday's game against Virginia Tech.

Forston puts a lot of the pressure for stopping the Hokies' running attack on the defensive line and he doesn't want it any other way.

"I love that a lot of the pressure is going to be on the defensive linemen," Forston said. "That has made us go harder in practice and we will go even harder in the game. We don't want to let the team down."

"As a defensive lineman, the first thing you have to stop is the run. You want to make them go from running the ball to passing the ball and then the game gets a lot easier from there."

Miami's run defense has been good this season, allowing just two opponents to run for over 100 yards, but Virginia Tech is coming off their best rushing performance of the season.

Redshirt freshman Darren Evans set a school record by running for 253 yards last week in Virginia Tech's 23-13 win over Maryland.

Forston says that he expects Virginia Tech to continue to pound the ball on offense against Miami.

"They love to play smash mouth football," Forston said. "Their offensive line is physical and they want to come right at you and bow up. They have a running back that runs hard too, so we just have to go back to the techniques and fundamentals of wrapping up and running your feet after contact."

"He doesn't go down after first contact."

According to Forston, the bye week Miami is coming off of was particularly good for the defensive linemen.

"This week off was good to get our bodies back. I think everybody on the team just stayed in their house and let their body rest and watch football. We don't have time to relax, but we liked having all those hours off last week."

This season Forston has totaled 11 tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss, and one pass break-up. This game will be his first Thursday night game on ESPN and he says he can't wait to play in a game of that magnitude.

"With a Thursday night game on ESPN, everybody is going to be watching," Forston said. "Everybody is going to be tuned in. We just have to play hard and pursue to the ball."


Nov. 12, 2008

 10 years ago '04        #4314
booie4 
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CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- One of the keys to the Miami defense stopping the Virginia Tech running game is sure tackling from the cornerbacks on the edges of the defense.

Virginia Tech running back Darren Evans (6-0, 210) is a physical runner that punishes a defense by picking up yards after first contact.

That's why the cornerbacks in particular have to play with a physical mindset.

"We worked a lot on the corners coming up in run support for the tackle and that is a tremendous thing we are going to have to get done," Head Coach Randy Shannon said. "They have to step up and get in the mix of run support. That is one thing that will show on how much we worked on that when they step up."

Cornerback Chavez Grant says the defensive backs are ready to help in run support and he says that may even be a bigger key for the secondary this week than focusing on their passing game.

Grant ranks sixth on the team with 21 tackles on the year.

"Virginia Tech likes to run the ball, so we put a little more focus on tackling with the cornerbacks. The corners are going to have to help and the safeties are going to have to help. We don't expect much out of the passing phase of their offense, so when it comes to running, we have to get in there and help. We feel like if we can make them pass the ball we can beat them."

That's because Virginia Tech's passing game is anemic at best. None of Virginia Tech's wide receivers have caught a touchdown pass this season. Danny Coale leads them in receiving with 21 receptions for 220 yards.

Grant says he and the secondary will do their best to continue Virginia Tech's streak of wide receivers not catching touchdowns.

"You would never think that any team in the country would have wide receivers that haven't caught a touchdown pass," Grant said. "With the way they are running the ball though and how they are winning games, that is what helps them win games."

"We would like to continue that streak and we are going to prepare and do our best to keep that streak going."

Miami's defense has progressively improved throughout this season. During UM's four game winning streak, the defense has allowed just 17 points and allowed opponents to convert just 24 percent of third downs.

Grant says that is just the whole idea of Miami's defense finishing off plays coming to fruition.

"We have been harping on that all season," Grant said. "The more it is harped on, the more it is in your head and the more you are going to try and do it. Our coaches say to make sure we get off on third down and our leaders say it too. Once you hear it all the time and the moment presents itself we try to attack it."


Nov. 12, 2008

 10 years ago '04        #4315
booie4 
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CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- Jacory Harris is confident heading into the Virginia Tech.

The true freshman quarterback is confident for a reason.

"They don't do anything complicated," Harris said. "They run one coverage and that really surprised me. They run one coverage. You see blitzes everywhere. They just send one more than you can block."

Harris compares the Virginia Tech defense to Florida "because of the way they roll and switch to a Cover 2."

Harris heads into Thursday's game fresh off his third ACC Rookie of the Week honor after leading the Canes to a comeback victory over Virginia after passing for 160 yards and two touchdowns.

He engineered a 95-yard game-tying drive late in the fourth quarter to send the Canes into overtime, but insisted he doesn't think about the time of the game when he's in control.

"I'm not thinking about it," Harris said. "I don't look at the time or the chains. That is something I think I need to do. I just know that every pass you need to get a first down or a touchdown.

"I almost ran out of time. We had the ball over seven minutes. When we got down to the end of the field, coach told me we had 1:15 left and I was really surprised."

Harris has had a successful freshman season throwing for 698 yards and seven touchdowns in a back-up role.

"My freshman year has been something that other freshmen can say they've had," Harris said. "It's been a wonderful experience. I've been here having the chance to play with my freshmen classmates and some of my teammates from back at Miami Northwestern.

"Plus no other freshmen can say they have been given the opportunity to play in a BCS bowl game. All we have to do is win out and hope one other team loses. It was something that wasn't expected."


Harris has grown accustomed to being the No. 2 quarterback this season, which has been a growing process for him.

He said patience was the key.

"Patience, I learned that at the beginning of the season," Harris said. "Things might not go the way you want them to go at first, but at the same time, you are doing whatever is best for the team. I learned that you have to play your role and as long as you play your role, success is going to come."

Miami (6-3, 3-2) will host Virginia Tech (6-3, 3-2) on Thursday night at 7:30 with a nationally televised ESPN audience watching.

"It does add some extra hype," Harris said. "You know you can't make mistakes and you know you've got to look good too. You have to go out there looking good and perform well, just do everything for your team and come out with the victory."

 10 years ago '04        #4316
KiNgJaMeS305|M 58 heat pts58
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i hope we dont come out flat at the beginning. We need to come out on fire

 10 years ago '04        #4317
C.R.I.P. 3 heat pts
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man im so ready for this game right now we need this W

 10 years ago '05        #4318
Deeangoe 2 heat pts
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gameday fam...checking in cuz im getting ready to go tailgating...and prolly wouldnt have another chance to post today...lets get it!!

 11-13-2008, 08:49 PM         #4319
The Lefty  OP
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Go maryland! Beat some tar heels!

 10 years ago '04        #4320
C.R.I.P. 3 heat pts
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 The Lefty said
Go maryland! Beat some tar heels!
got damn right

 10 years ago '04        #4321
booie4 
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MIAMI, Fla. -- Allen Bailey sacked Virginia Tech quarterback Tyrod Taylor on a fourth down play with 1:56 remaining and Miami took over on downs en route to their fifth straight win with a 16-14 triumph.

With the win Miami improved to 7-3 on the season, 4-2 in the ACC as they moved into a first place of the Coastal Division with two games to play.

Miami's Robert Marve completed 7-of-16 passes for 111 yards and added 44 yards on the ground. Aldarius Johnson led UM receivers with three catches for 51 yards.

Taylor scored on a 6-yard touchdown run with 3:28 to pull the Hokies within 16-14. Taylor's second touchdown run of the game capped off a 10-play, 69-yard drive, taking 4:15 off the clock.

Miami was unable to get a first down on their ensuing possession and were forced to punt.

Virginia Tech took over from their own 32 with 2:57 left. Taylor completed an 8-yard pass on the first play, but was faced with a 4th-and-3 and was sacked by Allen Bailey ending the Hokies' attempt at a comeback.

Miami freshman Marcus Robinson had three sacks in the game--his first of the season. Coming into the game, Robinson had nine tackles, two for a loss.

With the game tied 7-7 at halftime, Miami drove down the field on the opening drive of the second half. Marve connected with Aldarius Johnson for 29 and 16 yards to get the ball down to the Tech 26. Marve had an 18-yard run to take it down to the 7, but the Canes were unable to punch it in and settled for a 21-yard field goal by Matt Bosher to take a 10-7 lead.

The Canes made it 13-7 on another field goal by Bosher--this one for 31 yards--as Marve picked up a key third down with a 19-yard completion to Javarris James.

Miami outgained Virginia Tech 114 to minus-11 yards in the third quarter.

Looking to complete a first down in the fourth, Marve completed a short pass to Johnson, which was ripped away by Virginia Tech star Victor Harris. However, teammate Kayne Farquharson recovered the fumble and advanced the ball to the Tech 2. Miami was unable to score a touchdown once again and settled for a 23-yard field goal for Bosher to stretch the lead to 16-7 with 12 minutes remaining.

James started the scoring for Miami with a 3-yard touchdown run in the first quarter to cap off a 12-play, 76-yard drive. It was the first touchdown for James since the season opener.

During the drive, Miami's LaRon Byrd recovered a fumble by Marve at the Virginia Tech 15-yard line to keep the drive alive after Cam Martin knocked the ball loose. Marve accounted for 31 yards on the ground during the drive.

Virginia Tech answered as Taylor rushed in for a 14-yard score. Dustin Keys missed a 51-yard field goal wide right just before halftime as Jarrett Boykin came down with an impressive bobbling one-handed 38-yard catch to set up the field goal attempt.

Next Up

Miami will travel to Georgia Tech (7-3, 4-3) for their second straight Thursday night game.

Georgia Tech has won the last three in the series including a 17-14 victory last season.

 10 years ago '04        #4322
booie4 
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$5,535 | Props total: 2184 2184
MIAMI, Fla. -- Read here for what we learned and what we can expect from Miami the rest of the season after their 16-14 win over Virginia Tech Thursday night.

************************************************** *********

Miami is a second half team

For whatever reason, Miami has become a very good second half team this year. The offense puts a lot more points on the board and the defense becomes very tight. Against Virginia Tech, the defense came out strong, so it was the offense who came out in the second half and looked much more crisp. Quarterback Robert Marve came out of halftime and led UM to a nine play, 66-yard drive that ended in a field goal and set the tone in Miami's favor for the rest of the game.

On defense, Miami limited Virginia Tech to just 59 total yards offensively in the second half. For the first time all season, UM's defensive line really dominated the line of scrimmage and ended the game with six sacks. One thing has become certain this season, if Miami can keep the score close at halftime they are in every game.

The offensive line protected well

Give a lot of credit to offensive line coach Jeff Stoutland for having his unit ready without their best player. Reggie Youngblood stepped in and did a magnificent job filling in for Jason Fox, protecting the quarterback's blindside all game long. Stoutland had his players ready for Virginia Tech's strong pass rush and allowed just four sacks. The line not only protected well, they also cleaned up their false start penalties that plagued them in the Virginia game. UM's offensive line should feel very good about their performance going into the Georgia Tech game.

Third down defense was very good

Miami's third down defense continues to get better as the season progresses. Miami allowed Virginia Tech to convert just 2-of-11 third downs in the game and k!lled multiple Tech drives by making sound tackles and picking up crucial sacks in big situations. Miami got off the field and played their best defensive football on the down where it mattered most.

Marcus Robinson established himself as a pass rushing force

Robinson received his second start this season against Virginia Tech and he did not disappoint with his performance. Robinson, who entered the game with zero sacks this season, showed a very good motor as a pass rushing specialist and sacked the quarterback three times and led Miami with seven tackles. Robinson was a big key in stifling Virginia Tech's offense and getting the defense off the field in third down situations.

You don't want to play Miami on Thursday night

With the win, the Hurricanes are now 13-1 all time on ESPN Thursday night games--including an 11 game winning streak. Miami always plays with an extra emotion in primetime games and they thrive under the spotlight. UM fans have to feel good about Miami's chances as they head into another Thursday night game next week at Georgia Tech.

The run defense was outstanding

Miami knew they had to stuff the run to have a chance against Virginia Tech and they did just that, limiting running back Darren Evans to just 43 yards and a long of 13 yards on the night. The week before Evans ran for over 200 yards, but Miami really keyed in on him and made him work hard for every yard he gained. This was a matchup of whose will would be stronger and Miami's defense dominated this battle from the beginning of the game.

The special teams were special

Miami's kicker/punter Matt Bosher and the coverage units deserve some attention for the outstanding job they did in limiting Virginia Tech's special teams to make an impact in the return game. Miami's coverage units--led by wide receiver Sam Shields--did an outstanding job of getting downfield. On five kickoffs, Virginia Tech averaged just ten yards per return and on punt returns Virginia Tech averaged -1 yards. Bosher again did a solid job with his field goal kicking, going a perfect 3-for-3 in the game in helping UM put crucial points on the scoreboard.

 10 years ago '04        #4323
booie4 
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$5,535 | Props total: 2184 2184
MIAMI, Fla. -- Once again, freshman linebacker Sean Spence turned in a very strong performance Thursday night against Virginia Tech.

Spence finished the game second on the team in tackles with six as he continues to be one of Miami's most productive defenders.

Read here to see what Spence had to say after UM's 16-14 win over Virginia Tech.

What does this win mean to you guys for the final two games of the year?

"It definitely rises our confidence and it gives us more confidence going into each game. We are going to celebrate the win [Thursday] night and then it is on to Georgia Tech and focusing on that game."

Talk about Marcus Robinson and his performance and what it meant to the defense tonight:

"I was messing with Marcus Robinson all week about stepping up in this game and making a sack. He is so fast off the edge and he finally put it all together. He is a tremendous player on the field and every time he is out there he tries to get to the quarterback. He did a good job tonight."

What do you think was the main reason for all the sacks tonight?

"The defensive backs did a tremendous job of covering downfield. They allowed for the defensive line to get to the quarterback and get those sacks."

What was it like going up against Tyrod Taylor and containing him for most the game?

"It is very stressful covering a great athlete at quarterback like Tyrod Taylor. He runs around everywhere and you have to cover their receivers and then go chase him around. It is a very tough task, but the defense stepped up to the occasion."

How great was it to help the seniors go out in their final home game with a victory?

"We wanted to send our seniors out right and with this being their last game it is very emotional and they shed some tears. We just wanted to go out and leave it all on the field for them."

The defense came up big on that last drive. What was the mindset on that final drive?

"That is our job. If they don't score, they don't win. They scored two touchdowns on us with Tyrod, but when it was time to step up and stop them we did."

Did you feel a little lucky in that game with the fortunate bounces Miami got in the turnover battle?

"I think it was meant for us to win that game. When Aldarius fumbled and it went into Kayne Farquharson's hands I just felt that way."

Marcus Forston had his first sack of his career, did you get a chance to talk about that with him on the sidelines?

"That is my roommate and I had been telling him this whole week, whey are you going to get a sack? And he told me that he was going to do this little swim move to get the sack and he did it."

How much does this win mean to the team from the standpoint that you had 11 days off coming into this game and played very sharp?

"It feels good to know that all of the hard work is paying off. Getting after it in practice everyday is paying off and we are seeing that now."

 10 years ago '04        #4324
booie4 
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$5,535 | Props total: 2184 2184
MIAMI, Fla. -- Miami quarterback Robert Marve threw for just 121 yards and completed just 44 percent of his passes against Virginia Tech.

But his performance will have the Miami coaching staff smiling when they watch the game film.

That's because Marve stayed under control for the entire game and didn't throw any interceptions, which helped UM's offense control the tempo of the game.

The only moment Marve made a mistake was on a fumble he had that wide receiver LaRon Byrd pounced on during UM's touchdown drive.

"I was scared," Marve said of that play. "I was worried I popped my head up and all I saw was Virginia Tech players and LaRon Byrd came out of nowhere and got it. I think it was one of those nights for us where the ball definitely fell our way."

One area of his game Marve showed off against Virginia Tech was his running ability. Marve ran the ball 14 times and gained 65 yards against the Hokies' defense. Marve said many of those quarterback runs were designed plays and that was part of the gameplan going into the game.

"We felt like we could go empty a little bit and take our chances there," Marve said of running the ball out of the no-back set. "When we got great receivers like Kayne and Baby J one-on-one with their guys, then we feel great about that too."

Prior to the game Marve briefly met with former University of Miami quarterback and Hall of Famer Jim Kelly, who was being inducted into Miami's ring of honor at halftime of the Virginia Tech game.

Marve said he had heard so much about Kelly growing up because his father, Eugene, played with him at Buffalo for a few seasons.

"I met Jim Kelly and I think my heart skipped a beat," Marve said. "My dad played with him in Buffalo, so I had always heard stories about him since I was little, so to finally put a face with all the tales was pretty awesome."

After the game, Marve said this young team has learned how to win and the team is starting to get on a little roll now heading into the final two games of the year. Marve says compared to earlier in the season, Miami is playing with more confidence and that confidence equals wins.

"If you look back at the two games we have lost besides the Florida game, we lost by a total of six points. I think it was more lets just get out there and get some wins. Central Florida gave us some confidence and after that we just kept winning. We would like to have those two games that we lost, but they are gone now and we are making the most of our opportunities."

"I think every team needs some time to win. That is the biggest thing and once you learn how to win you see how it goes and everything begins to roll a lot better. Now we are starting to f!ght as a group and f!ght together."

 10 years ago '04        #4325
booie4 
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$5,535 | Props total: 2184 2184
CORAL GABLES, Fla. -- Going into the Virginia Tech game, Miami's defensive coaches told freshman defensive end Marcus Robinson how important he would be in limiting Tech's offense.

That's because Robinson's pass rushing ability could be disruptive enough to get to Virginia Tech's athletic quarterback Tyrod Taylor and quick enough to beat the Hokies' offensive line all game.

So Robinson responded with a great week of practice leading up to the Thursday night game and he earned himself his second start of the season against Virginia Tech.

Robinson responded in a big way, totaling a team leading seven tackles and three sacks along with four tackles for loss. Coming into the game, Robinson had totaled nine tackles and two tackles for loss.

"All week the coaches had been telling me I could use my speed off the edge, so when I went in a couple times during the game I beat them with my speed," Robinson said. "Coach just told me to keep getting off the ball and keep running and use my pass rush moves and I will get to the quarterback."

Robinson was a big reason why Taylor ran for just 43 yards on 14 carries for the night. Coach Shannon says a big reason for the success of the defensive line was because of their ability to read whether the play was going to be a pass or run before the snap.

"We did some things where we worked on getting the defensive line to recognize run-pass situations and we worked on that for two weeks and that really helped us out this week," Shannon said.

It was the best game Robinson said he had played since he had a six-sack game in high school. He admits that he is feeling more comfortable at this point in the season now that he has perfected a few pass rushing moves and his ability to get off the ball.

"That is my thing," Robinson said. "I know I can beat people with my speed. The coaches just said to keep using my speed rush because I got them. They were telling me to keep using my speed because I was beating them and I just used the technique that he taught me."

Miami is going into the Georgia Tech game next week on a five game winning streak and during that stretch, the UM defense has vastly improved. Robinson credits much of that improvement to the players understanding the scheme of defensive coordinator Bill Young.

"Early in the year we were just getting used to the system," Robinson said. "We had a few bumps here and there that teams were capitalizing off of. Now that we are playing the same defense over and over, everybody is getting used to it."

With young players like Robinson coming into their own as they understand the demands of college football and feel comfortable in the college defense, the potential of the UM defense at the end of the season is scary.

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