2011 Prediction & Game Story
Week 12, Miami at South Florida
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Nov. 19 Miami 6 … at South Florida 3
CFN Analysis: This was a disastrous loss for USF, even though it wasn’t in conference play. The loss of QB B.J. Daniels to a shoulder injury was the one thing the team couldn’t afford with Louisville and West Virginia coming up and a win needed to get bowl eligible. Even with five losses in the last six games, there’s still time to turn
things back around even if Daniels can’t go. … The pass rush destroyed Miami, but it couldn’t get the one stop it needed in the final moments. The Bulls finished with 11
tackles for loss and six sacks, while DeDe Lattimore finished with ten tackles, a sack, and two tackles for loss. … Bobby Evels completed 5-of-9 passes for 36 yards, but as long as Daniels is hurting, it’ll be up to Darrell Scott to get the running game going behind an O line that’s been having problems. The ground attack has to take over.
Jacory Harris was beaten up all game long thanks to a rough day from the O line and the great play from the USF defensive front, but he came up with the game-winning drive when the team needed it. He finished completing 27-of-35 passes for 259 yards. He had to throw with Lamar Miller and the ground game going nowhere. The Bull defense dominated. … The Miami D didn’t get into the backfield, but it only allowed three points and it stuffed the run all game long. The defense only let USF convert 2-of-12 third down tries, while the offense hung on to the ball for over 38 minutes. … The Canes are voluntarily choosing to not go to a bowl, so the Boston College game is it.
(AP) TAMPA, Fla. -- Jake Wieclaw's second field goal of the game, a 36-yarder as time expired gave Miami a 6-3 victory over South Florida and made the Hurricanes bowl eligible on Saturday.
Wieclaw finished a clutch drive that quarterback Jacory Harris kept alive with a couple of crucial third-down conversions. The junior calmly sent the game-winner through the uprights after USF (5-5) used a pair of timeouts to try to rattle the kicker, who earlier had missed on a 41-yard attempt that was tipped.
Harris threw for 259 yards, but was sacked six times. USF played most of the second half without quarterback B.J. Daniels, who left in the third quarter with a shoulder injury.
Miami (6-5) is bowl eligible with one game remaining against Boston College, however it remains unclear if the Hurricanes will actually accept a berth because of a booster scandal that ultimately could lead to NCAA sanctions.
In recent weeks, references by both coach Al Golden and players to having a certain number of games left to play -- almost always talking about the regular-season total -- prompted speculation that Miami may forgo any possible postseason invitations.
Questions on the subject persisted earlier this month after athletic director Shawn Eichorst, in his first extended comments to reporters since the scandal involving a former booster broke in August, would not say if the Hurricanes would accept a bowl bid should they qualify.
Knowing that it will almost certainly face NCAA sanctions over allegations made by convicted Ponzi scheme architect Nevin Shapiro, the school could self-impose a bowl ban at any time in an effort to potentially minimize at least some of the penalties that could be handed down when the investigation ends.
Shapiro claims he tainted 72 Miami players and recruits, including at least a dozen members of the current team, with cash, cars, nightclub and strip-club access and other so-called "extra benefits" from 2002 through 2010.
"I hope we go," Harris said this week. "I'm a senior. It's our last shot."
Daniels accounted for 371 yards total offense to help USF stop a four-game losing streak the previous week against Syracuse. The slide toppled the Bulls' first goal of winning the Big East, however they can still qualify for a bowl berth for a seventh consecutive season by winning one of two remaining games against Louisville and West Virginia.
The teams exchanged turnovers within the first three plays of the game, and it was 3-3 at the half after Miami settled for Wieclaw's 26-yard field goal at the end of a 16-play, 77-yard drive in the opening quarter and USF got on the board with a 10-play, 49-yard march that set up Maikon Bonani's 42-yard field goal late in the second quarter.
The Hurricanes wasted a potential opportunity to take the lead after Harris used completions of 22 yards to Travis Benjamin and 11 yards to Eduardo Clements to help them move from their own 17 to the USF 31 in the closing seconds of the half. But a delay of game penalty coming out of a timeout, followed by a sack that knocked them out of field goal range and forced a punt.
They squandered another chance when they drove to the USF 15 late in the third quarter, only to come away empty when Ryne Giddins got a hand on Wieclaw's 41-yard field try that was on line but fell short in the end zone.
Daniels was injured with a little over five minutes into the second half, landing on his right shoulder after scrambling for no gain and being tackled by Miami's Brandon McGee. The junior removed his jersey and shoulder pads, but remained on the sideline with a bag of ice on the injury.
Daniels finished 11 of 18 passing for 97 yards and an interception on USF's first play from scrimmage. He rushed for 30 yards on nine attempts.
Bobby Eveld replaced Daniels, but the Bulls didn't come anywhere close to scoring with their backup quarterback on the field.
Miami (5-5) at South Florida (5-4) Nov. 19, 3:30, ESPNU
Here’s The Deal … While neither program is challenging for a conference title at this stage of November, both will have plenty at stake this weekend; Miami and South Florida need one more victory to become eligible to participate in the postseason. Oh, and there’s also the issue of bragging rights. The Hurricanes and the Bulls meet for the fourth time in a budding rivalry that promises to get more intense over the years. The Bulls won in Miami last year, a signature moment for then-first-year head coach Skip Holtz and the rest of his staff. USF hasn’t had as much to celebrate during a streaky 2011, though it did finally win a game on Friday, beating Syracuse in the Carrier Dome to snap a nasty four-game losing skid.
The Hurricanes have every bit as up-and-down throughout Al Golden’s debut season, nudging over the .500 mark, only to slide back down to it a week later. Miami will be looking to bounce back from last week’s 23-19 loss to a far more bitter rival, Florida State.
Why Miami Might Win: Sure, South Florida has talent and speed on defense, but playing a Big East schedule hasn’t exactly made this group battle-tested. In fact, when the Bulls faced opponents with decent weapons, they yielded five touchdowns and more than 500 yards to Pitt and Cincinnati. The Hurricanes will pose a balanced threat comprised of the running of Lamar Miller, and the passing of Jacory Harris. Miller crossed the 1,000-yard mark in Tallahassee, and possesses the jets to zip past the second line of defense.
Harris has pieced together a solid final year by limiting his mistakes, and getting the ball in the hands of his top playmakers, receivers Travis Benjamin, Tommy Streeter and Allen Hurns. Miami will have redemption in mind after losing at home to USF last November.
Why South Florida Might Win: It looks as if the Bulls offense has finally turned the corner, scoring at least 34 points in two of the last three games. Not only has QB B.J. Daniels been more consistent with his passes, but he’s back to picking up large chunks of real estate on the ground. And while he hopes to have starting RB Darrell Scott behind him once again, backup Demetris Murray has proven to be a viable workhorse when his number has been called.
Miami has been a marginal defensive team this fall, lacking the takeaways to really turn the tide of games. South Florida will look to punish that unit, which has shown softness in run defense, especially between the tackles.
What To Watch Out For: While South Florida had some success through the air against the Syracuse secondary last week, can it continue this weekend versus Miami? The ‘Canes do have a much better collection of athletes, yet haven’t been a vintage edition this season. The Bulls and Daniels are still adjusting to life without injured Sterling Griffin, the team’s top pass-catcher. In his place, Andre Davis, Victor Marc and Deonte Welch have played admirably, but Miami will present an entirely different challenge athletically.
What Will Happen: Now that South Florida got the monkey off its back, it can get back to the business of trying to recapture its September form. The gap between these two schools isn’t very wide, and the Bulls will enjoy a huge edge in intangibles, such as motivation and playing at Raymond James Stadium. This game is a big deal for USF. Miami? Not so much. The Bulls will eke out a close win for a second straight year, riding 175 yards on the ground and the play of a resurgent defense.
CFN Prediction: South Florida 23 … Miami 21
Click For Latest Line From ATS: Miami -1 O/U: 52.5
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