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Clinic Talk: Miami defeats Duke through the air

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QB Brad Kaaya leads Canes over Blue Devils

NCAA Football: Duke at Miami
Kaaya throws for 396 yards and 4 TD’s
Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

At the end of the 1st, Miami was up 10-7 over Duke and Duke was doing what they do. Jones was the star and he was on fire starting 10/10 and involved on 11/12 plays on their lead taking touchdown drive.

How did Miami put 40 up on Duke without a turnover? They got just enough pressure on Jones in the 2nd half and kept Duke from getting pressure on Kaaya. It felt like Kaaya had all day to throw and the Devils walked away with no sacks on the junior QB and only 3 hurries.

Above, 7-man protection and a great block from Walton frees up Kaaya to hit the corner on the smash (corner/hitch) route. Walton looked great in pass pro here as the protection set up a little-on-little (RB on LB) protection.

Above, how else can you slow down a pass rush and open up passing lanes? A little play-action. What’s good here with Brad’s immobility is to PA from shotgun. He doesn’t have to get his back turned to the play and it doesn’t require a lot of footwork, just fake and step back. Walton uses his speed on the wheel getting deep and outside the #’s away from the safety help.

Above, look at a 5-man protection up 23-14 late in the 3rd. It’s a 5-man protection scheme and one of Richt’s classic RB outlets. The back comes up into protection, if no one shows, he breaks out down the flat as an outlet. Great pass pro from the bookends Gauthier and St. Louis. Gauthier did a hell of a lot better than McDermott.

Above, Njoku and Kaaya hook up on the play-action waggle. What Kaaya does that’s smart is gets his hips flipped back around as quick as possible because on the naked boot the defensive end could come free and be in his face. While he doesn’t come back downhill and attack the line of scrimmage, he really doesn’t need to if he’s not going to make running an option.

The big difference I pointed out earlier in the season, and will again, is watch the unselfish play. Herndon’s blocking down field takes out two players. Njoku can run the sideline and Miami puts the nail in the coffin.


These two GIFs below show you the promise in the Miami defense. Norton, a sophomore, sacks Jones and is met there by Willis another sophomore. And I believe the top GIF is freshman Joe Jackson with the explosive sack on Jones. That’s a lot of future upside for the #Canes as they head into a bowl and 2017.

Also, Jones starts 10/10 on passing with a TD but Miami is able to blank Duke in the 3rd quarter and only allow one TD in mop up duty. That’s a vast improvement from the zero-adjustment era we saw from Shannon and Golden.

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