Piece of cake: Kaaya throws 4 TDs, Miami tops FAMU
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (AP) Brad Kaaya threw for four touchdowns on his 21st birthday, Miami scored a school-record 42 points in the third quarter and the Mark Richt era began with an easy 70-3 win over Florida A&M on Saturday night.
''I love being at Miami,'' Richt said.
The Hurricanes (1-0) had three backs - Joe Yearby, Mark Walton and Gus Edwards - all top 100 yards, the first time a Miami trio has done that since 1987. Yearby ran for two scores, Walton and Edwards each ran for one, and seven other Hurricanes reached the end zone.
Miami scored touchdowns on 10 of its first 12 possessions.
''We were just ready,'' said Miami receiver Braxton Berrios, who returned a punt for a touchdown.
Kaaya's four TD throws tied a career-best. He completed 12 of 18 passes for 135 yards.
Kenneth Coleman completed nine of 16 passes for 135 yards for the Rattlers (0-1), who lost to Miami for the 10th consecutive time.
''We didn't come to play,'' Coleman said. ''We've got work to do.''
It was Richt's first game leading the Hurricanes. He played at Miami until his graduation in 1982, and spent the previous 15 seasons coaching at Georgia. His team took a 28-3 lead into halftime, then scored touchdowns on all six of its opportunities in the third - with Edwards going 74 yards for a score as the quarter expired.
Florida A&M: The Rattlers got plenty of players involved both rushing and receiving, played two quarterbacks and put together a pair of relatively solid drives in the second quarter. In short, plenty of players got experience.
Miami: The Hurricanes flirted with matching the school-record for points (77 against Savannah State in 2013) and sold more than 60,000 tickets. And the starting linebacker trio of Zach McCloud, Shaq Quarterman and Michael Pinckney - all true freshmen - got their college careers off to a flying start. The last trio of Miami backs to top 100 yards in the same game was Leonard Conley, Melvin Bratton and Warren Williams against Cincinnati on Oct. 24, 1987.
Miami's drought may be over.
The Hurricanes last appeared in the AP Top 25 on Nov. 10, 2013 - 39 polls ago. Since then, 61 different programs have been ranked. If Miami appears in the poll that will be released Tuesday, it'll be the first time the Hurricanes were ranked so early in a season since 2010.
Florida A&M: At Coastal Carolina, Sept. 10. Coastal Carolina beat FAMU 48-3 in 2014. For whatever this is worth, it'll be the second straight week the Rattlers visit a school that made the 2016 College World Series - the Chanticleers won the title.
Miami: Host Florida Atlantic, Sept. 10. The Hurricanes are 2-0 all-time against the Owls, though were tested in the first half of last season's meeting at FAU. Miami has rushed for 6.5 yards per carry in the two games.