Good morning ‘Canes fam.
And what a good morning it is and UM broke out of its’ October doldrums with an explosive start to November in a 55-28 win over Pitt yesterday.
ICYMI Cam Underwood recapped the game for us.
He also started a new feature for SOTU, the three stars of the game.
Great job by Cam encapsulating the game and the key performers.
How about some highlights for those who missed it, or just want another look:
Here’s another look at Mark Walton’s sensational second half run that was not called back (note the saracsm).
QB Brad Kaaya was exactly what you expected/want yesterday. Hopefully it carries over the remainder of the season.
What did Miami Head Coach Mark Richt have to say after the game?
Here’s the transcript of his presser:
On whether Brad Kaaya’s pocket awareness was better Saturday...
"When you have a pocket, it helps. He did a good job of scrambling. I think he had positive yards rushing probably for the first time in his life, or at least at The U. I was really proud of that. He made good decisions and really didn’t force anything. A couple of times they got us on a couple of blitzes that we just couldn’t get a hat oneverybody, and he threw the ball away in a safe spot. He didn’t just hold it and take the shot - that’s part of not getting hit too, is knowing when it’s time to abort the play and throw it out. I think he did a really good job."
On the status of center Nick Linder...
"Linder was hurt all week in practice, or at least he was hurting. He was sucking it up. When you’re blocking a 350-pounder there down after down, I’d imagine it kind ofstarted to wear on him a little bit - an upper-body injury. By halftime, he was shot. I don’t know what that means for next week, but [Alex] Gall did come in. When youdon’t notice any fumbled snaps or you don’t notice any sacks and you run the ball well, you have to imagine that he played well."
On how much his play-calling helped the offense today...
"When people play man coverage, you throw to your first progression. You don’t have to hold the ball very long. They play a lot of man coverage. That’s what they do. A lot of the decisions were first-progression decisions and because of that, the ball was coming out. We actually watched tape of Oklahoma State and Virginia Tech, andsaw you don’t have to hold it long. ‘One, two, three, hitch, fire.’ Sometimes it’s ‘left, right, throw it’ and just place the ball where our skill guys can make a play. Just about everything that we had schemed up and dialed up had a chance for success.
"There were a few things that were new down in the red area, one that was a touchdown that ended up being called back. Then we ran it again and scored on it – the one they reviewed - and we had another one when [Stacy] Coley caught it. That play was actually Thursday after practice, watching one more reel of tape, and it just kind ofhit me that this has got a really good chance of scoring down there inside the 5, so we put that one in that Coley caught."
On what he learned about the team over its four-game losing streak...
"You never know about your team until you really hit some true adversity. I’m talking football adversity, I’m not talking about life. It feels like life and death sometimes when you pour so much of your time and energy into it. Certainly, you got some seniors that probably wished for a better record at this point - all of them, I’m sure. They could have said, ‘Forget it’...maybe not say it out loud, but maybe in their spirit or maybe in their actions, just let up a little bit. But they didn’t do that. I just saw a bunch of coaches that kept fighting together, and players that kept fighting together and we had a wonderful performance. I’m very thankful. It was good medicine."
On how the victory changes the feel of the season...
"There’s always optimism after the victory. There’s always thoughts of what can be. I told the guys to enjoy this thing and enjoy it in the right way, and let’s get back to work and try to do it again. It’s hard, when you have that kind of momentum against you, it’s hard to stop the train and get it turned around and going the other direction. It’s very difficult. Same thing is true with positive momentum – you get that thing rolling really good and it’s hard to slow it down sometimes. We were fighting against the negativity that comes along with not winning at a major university and one that has a proud tradition like we do. It was good.
"I’ll say this too, I’m going to throw a little props to Russell Maryland. He was our honorary captain and he spoke to the team last night. He couldn’t have done a better njob of just talking about a little bit of his career, and how he started slow on the scout team and how he was getting whooped up pretty good by some good linemen."
On the play of true freshman wide receiver Ahmmon Richards...
"All those guys did, but Ahmmon is a guy that we know can run, we know can track a ball deep, we know he can adjust to a deep ball well. He has a wonderful skill set, just a sharp kid, and a guy that can come in as a true freshmen and perform like he has performed overall, has been great. But we have a bunch of other guys making plays, too certainly. Not to take anything away from Ahmmon, he played very well."
Additional News and Notes:
- Kaaya had a career high 12 yard scramble. He also had his first rushing TD of the season.
- The junior QB also completed his first 13 passes of the game, for 180 yards.
- Kendrick Norton forced his first career fumble, and Chad Thomas had his first fumble recovery.
- Corn Elder led the Hurricanes with 8 tackles.
- Ahmmon Richards is already 4th for the most receiving yards by a freshman with 632. This kid is going to break a lot of records at Coral Gables.
- Offensive lineman Danny Isidora made his 35th consecutive start.