Miami may be far from a complete football team but the Hurricanes are 3-0 in the ACC after hanging on to defeat N.C State, 44-37, on Saturday.
Both teams had terrific stretches in this video game that came to life – they combined for 1,315 yards – and both had awful ones. But in the end, Miami simply made more plays in yet another game that had its fans on the edges of their seats.
Here are the grades of Miami’s fourth win in five contests and NCSU’s second loss in five games:
N.C. State offense: State amassed 664 total yards, including 440 passing and two touchdowns from Mike Glennon and 120 rushing and a score by Tony Creecy. The Woflpack averaged 7.5 yards a snap, which they did 88 times. But six turnovers and a ton of penalties were killer. Grade: B.
Miami offense: The Hurricanes totaled 651 total yards on 81 plays, averaging 8 yards per snap. Miami exploded in the first quarter, and if not for an interception off a tipped ball by a UM receiver would have scored 30 points in the opening period. Stephen Morris passed for 566 yards and five touchdowns. Phillip Dorsett had 191 yards receiving and twos cores and Rashawn Scott shad 180 yards receiving and two TDs. Grade: A+.
N.C. State defense: The Pack toughened up a few times in keeping the Canes out of the end zone, but overall, when you allow 651 yards, including 566 by a quarterback who has been inconsistent, that’s a terrible sign. So much for having the top secondary in any league. Grade: F.
Miami defense: If not for getting six turnovers, one of which came on the final play of the game, the Canes’ defense would get an F, too. NCSU gained 664 yards and managed to overcome a big Miami lead. The defense made enough plays to allow the offense to win this one. Grade: D.
N.C. State intangibles: The Pack scored on its opening drive, but it looked woefully unprepared on defense, lacked spirit and got into the game in part because Miami allowed it to happen. The six turnovers and 14 penalties are awful, but credit Tom O’Brien’s team for fighting and having a chance late to pull out the win. Grade: C-. Miami intangibles: The Canes managed to hold on again, proving again this young team can be quite resilient. But it also needs to learn how to deliver an earlier knockout punch. That will come with time, but these kids are talented enough to make it happen sooner rather than later. Grade: B.