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Game Thread: Miami Heads to Chapel Hill for Showdown with UNC

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Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

The 6-3 (3-2) Hurricanes take on the 8-1 (5-0) Tar Heels in a game that absolutely must have to keep any ACCCG hopes alive.

It also represents a chance to get a quality win.

Miami and Interim Coach Larry Scott can continue to wipe the bad taste of their slow start and an embarrassing blow out destruction at the hands of Clemson from their collective mouths win a win today.

Game Notes (Courtesy UM):

CANES TRAVEL TO CHAPEL HILL FOR COASTAL BATTLE

-After capturing their second straight victory with a 27-21 win over Virginia on Nov. 7, the Hurricanes travel to Kenan Stadium Saturday for a matchup with #17 North Carolina at 3:30 p.m.

-UM leads the all-time series against the Tar Heels 9-8, and have won four of the last five matchups overall; the Canes are 2-4 all-time in Chapel Hill, but have won its last two road tilts (2013, 2011).

-Saturday will mark Miami’s third straight road contest against a ranked team and fourth game against a ranked opponent in 2015; Miami last topped then-No. 18/22 Duke 30-20 on Oct. 31.

-Miami is 2-0 under interim head coach Larry Scott - just the fourth Hurricanes’ head coach in the last 70 years with such a start, joining Jimmy Johnson, Dennis Erickson and Larry Coker.

-Saturday afternoon’s game will mark the first time North Carolina is ranked in the history of the 17-game series.

YIPPEE KAAYA

-After making his return to the lineup last time out vs. Virginia, sophomore QB Brad Kaaya remains near the top of the ACC in a number of individual categories, including passing yards (2,132, second), passing yards per game (266.5, first) and total offense (2,072 yards, fifth).

-Kaaya moved into a tie for 10th place all-time at Miami with his 38th career pass TD vs. Virginia.

-Kaaya has thrown just five interceptions in his last 457 attempts. He has thrown for more than 200 yards in 15 of his 21 career games at Miami and has five career 300-yard performances.

-Kaaya’s career home numbers (12 games) stand out: 3,005 passing yards, 26 TDs & just 7 INTs.

ELITE COMPANY

-Sophomore is one of just six quarterbacks nationally that have thrown for 2,000 yards-or-more passing, 10-or-more touchdowns and three-or-fewer interceptions.

-Matt Johnson (Bowling Green), Paxton Lynch (Memphis), Connor Cook (Michigan State), Dak Prescott (Mississppi State) and Anu Solomon (Arizona) are the only other quarterbacks that have accomplished this feat.

RETURN TO FORM

-Miami WR Stacy Coley had a dominant freshman season, earning 2013 Freshman All-America recognition and All-ACC honors after leading the team with 1,461 all-purpose yards.

-After a disappointing 2014, Coley has had a return to form this season. Despite missing two games with a hamstring injury, Coley ranks second on the team in catches (33) and receiving TDs (3).

-Coley, who posted his second career 100-yard receiving game last time out vs. Virginia, ranks first in the ACC with an average of 95.0 yards per conference game. He has 486 total receiving yards.

-Coley has caught at least five passes in four of the last five games, and has 475 yards over that span; the junior has recorded a TD in back-to-back games for the first time since November 2013.

BADG-O-MATIC

-Sophomore Michael Badgley is 19-of-23 this year in field goal attempts. His 19 made field goals & average of 2.38 FGM/game are the best such marks in FBS and are tied for fourth in UM history.

-Badgley is three made FGs shy of tying Jon Peattie’s season record of 22 set back in 2003.

-Badgley leads the ACC and ranks 10th in the NCAA in scoring, averaging 10.6 points per game.

-In a Sept. 19 win over Nebraska, Badgley drilled a career-high and tied a school record with five field goals made (41, 27, 23, 28 and 28).

GETTING DEFENSIVE

-Miami’s +10 turnover margin is an ACC-best and tied for ninth in FBS; UM is one of only 12 teams with a positive turnover margin in double digits. Miami has 18 turnovers gained and eight lost.

-Miami’s defense has recorded 12 interceptions, tied for 18th-most in FBS and second-most in ACC.

-Miami’s defense recorded its first shutout since 2010 in its season opener vs. Bethune-Cookman.

-Miami ranked No. 14 nationally in total defense in 2014, allowing an average of just 329.6 yards per game - the fourth-best mark in the ACC.

ARTIE AND RAYSHAWN ISLAND

-Junior cornerback Artie Burns leads the ACC and is tied for seventh nationally with five interceptions in 2015; his two picks vs. Virginia Tech on Oct. 17 marked the first multi-interception performance by a Hurricane since Tracy Howard had two picks at North Carolina in 2013.

-Burns’ five picks are already the most by a Hurricane in one year since Sean Taylor had 10 in 2003.

-Redshirt junior safety Rayshawn Jenkins is one of just seven players in the ACC (including Burns) with at least 3 interceptions in 2015.

-Burns became the first Hurricane player with an interception in three-consecutive games since Sean Taylor in 2003 (via AP) after having one pick in each of Miami’s first three games.

CAN OF CORN

-Junior cornerback Corn Elder has emerged among Miami’s top playmakers in 2015.

-Elder took the final lateral of "The Return" 91 yards to give Miami a 30-27 win over Duke.

-Elder is tied for fourth in the ACC with 10 passes defended (1.1 per game).

-Elder is the only player in college football with an interception, a punt return for a touchdown and a kickoff return for a touchdown.

Please be sure to leave plenty of comments below with fellow 'Canes fans