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Postscripts, reaction from UM's win against N.C. State

Postscripts and reaction from UM’s scintillating 44-37 win over North Carolina State on Saturday afternoon at Sun Life Stadium:

### Not only did Stephen Morris set the UM record for yards passing (566, beating Gino Torretta's mark of 485), but he set the ACC record, too. Former Wake Forest QB Rusty LaRue held the old ACC mark with 545 yards through the air.

Morris finished 26 for 49 with five touchdowns and one interception, which came off a tipped ball.

UM closed with 651 yards of offense - its third-most in history behind 689 against UCLA in 1998 and 655 against Boston College in 1984.

Morris' improved accuracy on deep balls isn’t a coincidence. Davon Johnson said last week that Morris and his receivers have been practicing vertical routes for 20 minutes after practice, knowing it had to improve.

Mission accomplished.

Besides his game-winning 62-yard TD pass to Phillip Dorsett with 19 seconds left, Morris threw TD passes of 14 yards (Allen Hurns), 24 (Dorsett), and 76 and 13 (to Rashawn Scott).

Dorsett finished with 191 yards on seven catches, Scott with 150 on six receptions.

The game-winning touchdown "was a broken play where Stephen used his feet," UM offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch said. "He launched a beautiful ball to Phillip. I'm so impressed how hard Phillip ran."

### Morris, on WQAM afterward: "Dorsett is working really hard in practice and that helps me so much. He's a big playmaker, so why not give him the ball?"

Morris, on the touchdown to win the game: "We were trying to attack the middle of the field. Hurns ran an over route, faked left and kept right. I saw Phillip running and didn't like how Hurns was running. I didn't want the game to go to overtime. I threw it up and he made a great play. After practice, we work hard on all our routes and it paid off today." Morris also credited Al Golden: "The offseason workouts completely developed our physical condition."

Said Fisch: "I'm so proud of Stephen. He's worked so hard. We try to get as many people the ball as we can."

### There's a lot of unjustified hype in spring practice - not just at UM, but everywhere - with performance not always translating to the fall. But the hype was warranted with Scott, who had his best game as a Cane.

### Al Golden, on WQAM: "We're not dominating in all phases. We're trying to be consistent in all three phases but with inconsistent effort. We're not a dominant team. This is a survive and advance team. People want us to slam the door and so do we. But we're not there yet. When [opponents] come back, we could pout. But we end up grinding out a win. I'm sure coach Parcells is laughing in Jupiter, but toughness is a skill. It's not just the coaches, but the strength staff getting these kids in condition."

### UM had six takeaways and "when the defense is opportunistic, we have to cash in," Golden said.

### What in the world has happened to kicker Jake Wieclaw? After missing from 22 yards last week, he missed field goals of 19, 41 and 43 yards. "That's uncharacteristic of Jake," Golden said. "I made a mistake keeping Dalton Botts as the holder, when he was out all week."

He pointed out only two starters on defense are seniors: Darius Smith and Brandon McGee. "That's absurd!" Golden said. (That doesn't include Vaughn Telemaque, who is now coming off the bench.)

### Duke Johnson, who entered averaging 212 all-purpose yards per game, was held to 82 on 16 touches. He had 24 yards on three catches, 39 yards on 12 rushing attempts (just 3.3 per carry) and 19 yards on one kickoff return.

### Mike James produced just 31 yards on 13 carries (2.4 average). UM averaged only 2.7 yards per rushing attempt (37 for 85).

"We're going to still be able to run the football well," Fisch said. "Today happened to be a bit of an anomaly with the way we threw it."

Said Morris: "I want to see Mike and Randy [Duke] get their yards and see the o-line demolish" the defense.

### As good as the receivers were, the tight ends continued to underwhelm, combining for just one catch for four yards (by Clive Walford). Neither Walford nor Asante Cleveland could handle high throws in the end zone, with Walford's resulting in an interception late in the first quarter.

### Ben Jones beat out Ereck Flowers and started at right tackle but left late in the first quarter with a leg injury.

### ESPN's Kirk Herbstreit tweeted about the small crowd: "Can someone tell stadium operations at Sun Life to please look into changing the seat color from bright orange to dull gray? It's getting embarrassing."

### The defense continued giving up video-game type numbers. North Carolina State closed with 664 yards - 440 through the air. And N.C. State averaged 4.9 yards per rush. That's the second-most yards UM has ever allowed (UCLA gained 670 against UM in 1998).

UM's defensive tackles (Darius Smith, Corey King, Olsen Pierre, Earl Moore, Luther Robinson) often were pushed around, especially on running plays.

"I think we know we're not dominant in there yet," Golden said. "Until two guys grow up and become dominant, we'll keep tag-teaming it." UM continues to give a lot of playing time to freshman Moore, and he shows potential at times.

The linebacker group is horribly depleted without Ramon Buchanon, Denzel Perryman and freshman Raphael Kirby. Jimmy Gaines played some but was limited.

Eddie Johnson, UM's best healthy linebacker, left briefly with a leg injury but returned. He made an impact with two forced fumbles and one of two Miami sacks (the other was by King). The two sacks were UM's only tackles for loss the entire day. 

Linebacker Gionni Paul, making his first career start, had 11 tackles but was beaten in pass coverage and missed a couple of tackles, including one that resulted in a long run early. But Paul and Tyrone Cornelius played more than they typically would because of injuries to others. Walk-on Nantambu Fentress gave UM some good snaps at linebacker.

### The secondary also had some breakdowns, including Brandon McGee being beaten on a 62-yard catch that set up N.C. State's tying field goal. Telemaque and KC Rodgers were beaten on another deep ball. But credit Thomas Finnie for the late interception that set up UM's winning TD.

### UM's last 3-0 start in the ACC, before this one, was in 2004.

### So now Notre Dame awaits, next Saturday, in UM's highest profile game in a couple years (7:30 p.m., NBC).

"This is why you come to Miami to play games like this," Anthony Chickillo told WQAM. "A lot of guys on our team don't know about the rivalry, but by Monday, they will know. And they will know about it from me."

Comments

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G-Money

Good job offensively. There is something more to just a lack of production from the defensive tackles.Eventually,someone is going to have to step forward and make some consistent plays. Great win, best wishes next week in Chicago.

BillyB

Morris will be our best quarterback since Dorsey.

Juan

Would UM draw more if they didn't charge so much for parking? It's a joke.

Roswell

Good win for the Canes. They showed toughness and kept on grinding it out. Credit Coach Golden and the staff.

Miami fans are an embarrassment. I think its been obvious to everyone that South Florida fans are the biggest fair weather fans in all of Sports. But this has just gotten beyond embarrassing. Herbstreet is tweeting about it and they were even laughing about it on Sports center on ESPN.

Good job Miami fans, way to support your team. What a joke.

Aardvas

They shouldn't have thrown Ray Ray Armstrong off the team. Morons! He would have been their best safety.

mike

Ray Ray absolutely should be off the team. He got his chances and blew it. BTW he's not playing at the NAIA he planned to transfer to because the NCAA wouldn't clear him. Probably why he's not playing here. And where all the so called expert fans that were asking for Morris to be benched and for Williams to start the K State game. Unbelievable how moronic fans are.

Penguin

Very good to hear that extra effort equals enhanced performance, something that holds true in most parts of ones life.

redsky

Canes have done a lot of good things in each of their wins. They're improving every week, they're winning because they have heart. This is a young team playing their hearts out. I love watching them play, Golden is doing a great job.

redsky

I'm reminiscing. It's funny (strange) that the Fins seem to attract so many more out of town fans than SoFla fans. They have fans worldwide I became a Fins fan when I was a kid in NYC. I still follow the Giants and Yankees, but I love the Dolphins, been a fan since the team started. Somehow they didn't seem as bad then as they've been the last decade. The Fins started playing in 1966, I was 13 at the time, I remember the team owners were Joe Robbie and actor/comedian Danny Thomas. It took them 5 years to get to their 1st SB in 1971, I was 18, and it seemed like a lifetime. We lost to the Cowboys. But then in 72 we had the Perfect Season and we were right back in it in 73....then the Marino years, we were still contenders.... Since then, I've grown old waiting for us to regain our dominance....hopefully we can start tomorrow!!!

Ba

If you want more home crowd, start at 1 or 1:30

Omaximus

What a pathetic comment Juan and anyone else who complains about parking. The reason you don't show up is because you are a lousy fan, nothing to do with parking. If they were ranked in the top ten you would find the money for parking. Typical south Florida fan.

What a move by Donna Shalala to move give up on Miami and move to the morgue formerly known as Joe Robbie Stadium. How old is she? If she lives long enough she might realize her dream of totally destroying the football program. Hell of an effort by Stephen Morris and the team today. After years of watching talented teams with no heart its fun to watch this team fight hard from start to finish.

redsky

The Orange Bowl, with Flipper in an above ground pool in the open endzone, throwing the football out after the kicker kicked the point after TD into the water!!!

redsky

Omaximus, that's what I said I like about this UM team, they're all heart!!! That's awesome!

Pbcane

Great game. Attendance - half the fans stayed in the bar areas under the fans and watched on tv, saw 4 people pass out. We have so many things against us, small school, 12:00 hot start, to many kid activities in the morning, and I agree $30.00 to park?

al

30 to park is stretching it, but I guess Miami is getting that money as part of the deal with the stadium,,but on to pure football,,,good game,,and again, same old song, these guys are simply young, and still going up against juniors and seniors from other teams,,so give these DTs another off season to get bigger and stronger, and by next year, we may notice another positive improvement!

rick

Yeah, it is stupid to play the games so far away from campus. On the other hand, people have to understand that the u only has about 15,000 students and that includes the medical and law schools. Many of these other schools have 40-60,000 students. Additionally,many of the alum don't live in Florida. Hopefully, some day the u can find an appropriate location and put up a 40,000 person venue similar to what Ucf did. Bty, even with their huge student body, huge alum base, ucf, in their first sec matchup drew about the same as us.

BLH

Yes - lets use UCF as an example.

Largest student body in Florida, even bigger than UF. They have an on campus stadium.They have a worthy game yesterday and a poor crowd. Stop being crybabies and just go to the games. There will never be an on campus stadium or one anywhere else. Sun Life is good enough.

Sam dade county

Attendance wont help us win other than in the recruiting phase of it. We play in a nfl stadium in miami for gods sake. If you get drunk on friday, no you wouldnt make the game at 12:00. If we went undefeated we still wouldnt pack that stadium. The fact of the matter is when you have your own stadium on campus, you get a real college football feel to it. Miami has alot of fans, and the crazy thing about it, most of us dont live in miami. I live in atlanta and its more cane fans here than georgia tech. This team has showed they dont need fans to encourage them and can care less about the fans that discourage them. We are the second youngest team in all the fbs and it has not mattered once who was at the game. We are 4-1 with or without fans at the game. Its maybe 30,000 people in attendance but i bet its about a million or two watching on tv withch is still makin the university money or they wouldnt put us on tv every week. The ob was no bigger than famu stadium and we barely packed that on home games. That doent mean we have fare weather fans, it means i would rather see it better on tv hosting my own cookout, or watching it at the bar down the street. Fsu, alabama, ohio state oregon ect. Packs there stadium because its nothing else going on there. Believe, i know, im from tallahassee, we have nothing to look foward to but football games. If your a true fan, it doesnt matter if you are attending the dam game, miami is about us against the world and kirt herbstreit is still salty we blasted his ohio state buckeys last year. People on these sport shows get mad when miami is on the way of winning again because they know, we dont win like other shcools. When we are good, we break records. We feild best teams ever, not just that season. So miami fans, keep supporting however as long as you support, because in the end, championships have never been won by fans, we aint on the feild. Look at it this way, calculate how many home loses the current top 25 has now, and they pack their stadiums. Then calculate them at the end of the season when things really start to matter. Point well taken.

canes60

You get the feeling watching this young team, they need to score 40 points a game just to have a chance to win, so far so good. Notre Dame has a very good front 7,see how the offense will react.

3jsmith

@Sam Dade County ...Love it could've said it better.....im too from Georgia n a die hard Cane...i would be at every game if i lived in Miami...

Lee Dog

Way to go Sam dade county!!!!! I'm from alabama and live in the Atl and you're right, nothing going on but looking forward to Saturday (in alabama). They start on Monday morning getting ready, picking out which pig to cook and which ugly red shirt to wear (hint hint)!!!! I don't care who attends the game as long as the players are playing for and with each other! The U against whom ever gets in the way!!!!!

AnonymousCane

I have been a lifelong Miami fan since 1957 and know for a fact that there were games in the OB during championship years that there were lots of empty seats.

Herbie can tweet and ESPN can laugh all they want, I watched USF home game with Rutgers (in an NFL Stadium) and there were thousands of empty seats. Don't recall ESPN laughing about that and it was their telecast! Don't recall Herbie tweeting about it.

In fact attendance is down all around the country, I seem to recall a Pat Forde article that talked about the dwindling attendance at all college games.

Sure there are a few places in the SEC where there is
absolutely nothing to do other than football on Saturday. Can you say, Auburn, Alabama, Florida, Arkansas, Texas A&M, to name a few.

I don't go to games because of the economy hitting my family so hard and now I'm on a limited and fixed income. Otherwise I would be there.I was there on Friday nights and for many years before they started winning big, did't miss a game! Many folks just can't afford the cost to their family budget and yes Harry Reid and Congress some of us have budgets we live by!

And yes the neighbors thought we were having a huge family argument when James scored the winning TD at GT and then again when Dorsett and Morris hooked up again at the end of the game Saturday, we were jumping up and down and going nuts with joy, relief whatever, just like many Canes fans all around the south Florida area who couldn't be there!

So all that to say Herbie can stuff it and I only watch ESPN because they televise so many games, don't watch otherwise. ESPN has an agenda every year, they always do and is part of the liberal media I don't trust anymore, so who cares what they or their lackeys like Herbie say!

Go Canes!

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