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Steve Kim Canes Corner- Better, but not Good Enough

Steve Kim Canes Corner. This past Saturday at the Hard Rock Stadium the Miami Hurricanes dropped their third consecutive game to the North Carolina Tar Heels, 27-24. For UM, it’s their fourth consecutive loss to UNC and Mack Brown. Overall, the effort was much better than the desultory performance put forth a couple of weeks ago versus Middle Tennessee St.

I actually flew from Los Angeles to the game, and like most fans, I was satisfied with the effort, but frustrated with a plethora of little things. And as Mario Cristobal likes to say, ”There are no little things, they all matter. A thing is a thing.”

And it was those things that eventually got Miami beat in their ACC opener.

Some other thoughts on the game:

Tyler Van Dyke got back on track, throwing for nearly 500 yards and three touchdowns. But unfortunately the running game was stifled (24 carries for 42 yards), and once again the inability to create a push upfront really hurt them in the red-zone. By my estimation they left about 10 points on the board this game.

As for TVD, he looked much more like the guy we saw last year tear through the ACC schedule. But to go back to my prior point, most teams that throw the ball 57 times simply do not win games. Regardless, credit has to go to coordinator Josh Gattis in making some necessary adjustments during the bye week.

This is the reality, until Miami’s offensive line is what Cristobal and line coach Alex Mirabel want it to be, they will have to be a pass-first unit.

Yes, while Miami racked up a lot of yards this weekend, the reality is that yards without points is empty calories. The Tar Heels have given up 61 points to App. St, and 45 to Notre Dame. The bottom line is if you’re not scoring at least 30 points in today’s college football, you are below average.

– Another familiar theme (a bad one) was played out this past game as they were mis-communication in the defensive backfield. Overall, the defense played well, sacking Drake Maye five times, but it was those explosive plays that really swung the game in their favor.

Starting with J.J Jones 74 yard touchdown on their opening drive that was facilitated by a blown coverage.

– This season has certainly been a disappointment thus far, with the new coaching staff a quick turnaround was expected. But it’s clear that this will be a bit of a process for Cristobal and Co. For those old enough to have gone through the Butch Davis era, this is something we have been through.

I still recall in 1995, Miami went 1-3, before going on a winning streak to finish 8-3 and 23rd in the country. They would bypass a bowl game as part of their NCAA probation. Then came a 9-3 1996, which included a 31-6 loss at the Orange Bowl to East Carolina. That loss was particularly sobering. It showed that this was going to take a bit. While Miami had some individual talent that season (the likes of Kennard Lang, Kenny Holmes, and Yatil Green) there was an overall dearth of talent.

Then you had the bubble bursting in 1997, when a depleted Miami squad went 5-6. Davis had no choice but to go to a full blown youth movement and young guys like Santana Moss, Dan Morgan, Reggie Wayne, Bubba Franks, Damione Lewis and Edgerrin James took their lumps. Eventually, they became the foundation of the upcoming great run of Miami football.

It got me thinking, starting with this upcoming game versus Virginia Tech, should UM start to work in youngsters like Jaleel Skinner, Nyjalik Kelly, Wesley Bissainthe, Chase Smith, Anez Cooper, etc into more prominent roles moving forward? Let these guys take their lumps and work for the future.

Regardless, us fans need to have patience and some perspective.

About the Author: Steven Kim

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