Let the Heisman chatter begin. Jacory Harris was remarkable and reminded Hurricanes fans why the future is now. We were 20-for-25 with 270 yards passing while tossing three touchdowns. He connected with nine different receivers and thrived in Mark Whipple’s creative offense.
Running Backs: A –
UM as a team ran for 184 yards averaging 4.7 yards per carry. Graig Cooper led all backs with 93 yards on 17 attempts.
Wide Receivers/Tight Ends: A +
Aldaris Johnson did not play due to injury, but Laron Byrd and Travis Benjamin stepped up. The sophomores combined for eight catches and 112 yards. Tight ends Dedrick Epps and Jimmy Graham hauled in 13- and 14-yard TD receptions respectively. The catch was Graham’s first career reception.
Offensive Line: A +
The offensive line was flawless. Harris had ample amount of time in the pocket and was not sacked once. Kudos to Matt Pipho for locking down GT’s lethal pass rusher Derrick Morgan the entire night.
Defensive Line: A +
After giving up 472 yards last year, the Canes gave up only 95 yards on the ground to the Ramblin’ Wreck. UM only surrendered 35 rushing yards after the first quarter. A tremendous job by the defensive line as it was discipline and played assignment football. The addition of Eric Moncur paid dividends.
Colin McCarthy did not start the game because his helmet was broken but that did not stop him from having an outstanding football game. He and Sean Spence never bit on GT’s trickery and made tackles to limit long runs. Darryl Sharpton had a game-high eight tackles.
Secondary: B –
Vaughn Telemaque committed an unnecessary pass interference penalty on 4th and 11 to prolong a Yellow Jacket drive. Sam Shields was beat on a couple of deep pass plays. Randy Phillips was a positive recording five tackles.
Special Teams: D
The only reason it did not fail was because of Jordan Futch’s YouTube-worthy hit on the GT player. Alex Uribe kicked two balls out of bounds to give Tech the ball at the 40. Matt Bosher missed two kicks inside the 35-yard line. Coming into Thursday’s game Bosher had missed two kicks his entire career.
Coaching: A +
An outstanding job by Randy Shannon, John Lovett and Mark Whipple. They executed their game plan perfectly. Now they must keep the team focused and hungry. The Canes cannot be complacent.
Justin Antweil may be contacted firstname.lastname@example.org