Jacory Harris threw three costly interceptions, one of which was in the fourth quarter that led to DeAndre McDaniel’s 23-yard interception return for a touchdown. Harris must show better poise and decision making. Many of his throws were sailing but his receivers bailed him out by making impressive catches.
Running Backs: C +
Graig Cooper, Javarris James and Damien Berry all ran for over 50 yards but were not able to get the key yards when they needed to. The Canes went three and out after the Randy Phillips interception in the end zone and were not able to punch it inside the goal line in overtime.
Wide Receivers/Tight Ends: B
Leonard Hankerson is the most improved player on this football team and he continues to haul in difficult ctaches. Travis Benjamin showed his electric speed.
Offensive Line: C+
Although Harris was only sacked three times he was hurried and flushed out of the pocket. The six-man rotation is getting tired as the season progresses.
Defensive Line: B
When Miami blitzed, they were successful but did not elect to generate pressure often in order to prevent the short slant routes to Jacoby Ford and CJ Spiller. Allen Bailey had two sacks and forced a fumble that Marcus Robinson scooped up for a 53-yard score. Andrew Smith also had a fumble recovery.
Sean Spence was annihilated on the Spiller 56-yard score up the left sideline, but he was playing with a bum knee for most of the game. Colin McCarthy and Darryl Sharpton were phenomenal. Each had 11 and 10 total tackles respectively while combining for 3.5 tackles for a loss and a forced fumble.
There were numerous break downs in the secondary especially on the Jacoby Ford game winning 26-yard touchdown. The secondary could not tackle and looked very confused by Clemson’s offensive schemes.
Special Teams: F
Kicking the ball to CJ Spiller with under a minute left in the first half when the Tigers had no timeouts was inexcusable. Miami had negative net yards in punt returns. The special teams unit continues to struggle getting down field and pinning the opponents deep in its own territory.
A microcosm of this game was calling a timeout before the end of the first half then on the ensuing play Miami was flagged for too many men on the field. Poor clock management to end the first half, too much miscommunication on the field, 11 penalties for 79 yards, conservative play calling in the fourth quarter. Damien Berry should have gotten the ball more in the red zone. There will be a lot of work in the film room this week.
Justin Antweil may be contacted at email@example.com