Miami Horror Nights: Instead of taking knee Canes take loss

Miami Night Canes loss

Photo by Edwin Garcia

Miami, Florida – Miami committed a major coaching blunder Saturday night resulting in a stunning 23-20 Canes loss to Georgia Tech in week 6. A series of events culminated in coach Mario Cristobal calling for a running play with 33 seconds left in the game that led up to Donald Chaney Jr. fumbling the ball. The call on the field was reviewed and despite the replay showing his elbow was down before the ball squirted out, the fumble stood.

Seizing on the critical mistake, the Yellow Jackets rapidly marched down the field. Haynes King completed two deep throws, the first to Malik Rutherford for 30 yards and the second to Christian Leary who slipped past Kamren Kinchens for the gaming-winning 44-yard touchdown. Although the Hurricanes outproduced Georgia Tech 454-250 in total yards and dominated time of possession (37:21-24:34) the offense struggled to put points on the board. UM’s attack was very anaemic leading only 3-0 at halftime. Tyler Van Dyke completed 24 of 36 passes for 288 yards and a touchdown but threw three interceptions. Miami was unable to capitalize on the ground, rushing for only 166 yards against an opponent who is the worst in the ACC against the run.

Chaney recorded 103 yards making it the first time he hit the centennial mark. Henry Parrish Jr. accumulated 52 yards and a touchdown. Parrish had another TD late in the second quarter that was nullified by a holding penalty on Anez Cooper. Xavier Restrepo was the top wide receiver tallying a new career-high 12 receptions for 123 yards. In the aftermath of the defeat, the Miami Hurricanes are now 4-1 (0-1, ACC) with North Carolina next.


A bad night for TVD

Van Dyke was not himself making bad decisions throwing into double coverage. El Capitan is lucky. Georgia Tech was credited with five pass breakups and some of those could have been nabbed for even more turnovers. Late in the second quarter, he went deep into the endzone trying to hit Restrepo only for LaMiles Brooks to snatch it away and the interception wasn’t even supposed to happen. Henry Parrish’s 18-yard rushing touchdown was taken away due to holding on Cooper.

The only two times fans saw the Van Dyke they all know and love was when he connected with Riley Williams for the 22-yard reception TD in the third quarter and the 57-yard strike to Colbie Young early in the fourth. What makes it baffling is that TVD wasn’t really pressured getting sacked once leading me to believe there may have been a lack of preparation. The way the Miami night played out that resulted in an embarrassing Canes loss we won’t see these black jerseys return for a long time. If ever.

Defense did what it could

Some will disagree in the wake of the loss, however, the defense played at an adequate level. The Yellow Jackets didn’t score at all in the first half. Georgia Tech was held to just 99 rushing yards. The aerial effort netted 151 yards. Haynes King completed less than half his passes (12 of 25) and threw two INTs of his own. Francisco Mauigoa picked off King midway through the second quarter stopping a potentially damaging drive. With less than nine minutes left in regulation, James Williams made the big interception running it back 44 yards giving the Canes excellent field position. Unlike Van Dyke, GT’s signal caller felt the heat getting hurried three times and sacked once.

With 6:23 left, Rueben Bain Jr. and Branson Deen pulled off a huge sack pushing back the Yellow Jackets five yards eventually forcing them into a three-and-out. Of course, the defense made mistakes. Dominick Blalock caught Williams and Jaden Davis sleeping late in the third on 3rd and 6. Then there’s the questionable call on Maigoa for roughing the passer helping Georgia Tech’s possession. King eventually found his opening scrambling for the 6-yard TD rush. Lastly, with 10 seconds left, Leary slipped past Kinchens for the gaming-winning touchdown. The defense is not the reason for the defeat on this crazy Miami night Canes loss.

Blame game

So much went wrong. The officiating was terrible, the penalties, no air raid, the ground game underperformed, and there were instances of busted coverage. However, none of that would’ve mattered if the coach had gone with kneeling the ball. Georgia Tech was out of timeouts and there was no reason for the Yellow Jackets to get the ball back. Whatever the cause, UM literally fumbled away the win. The buck stops with Mario. Cristobal has largely erased what respect he had in the fanbase.

(Visited 122 times, 1 visits today)