Miami has elite level skill players on offense at multiple positions. Those players have combined their talents to score plenty of points this year, and hopefully will continue to do the same against West Virginia in the Russell Athletic Bowl.
While most of the skill players are underclassmen, the old head of the group is senior WR Stacy Coley. A 4-star recruit out of Northeast HS (Oakland Park, FL), Coley has crafted a nice — but at times inconsistent — career at Miami. Coley earned Freshman All-American honors in 2013 with 33 catches for 591 yards and 7 TDs. On top of that, Coley was one of only a handful of players to score TDs receiving, rushing, on a punt return, AND on a kickoff return in 2013.
As a senior, Coley has stepped his game up yet again. To this point of the year, he has 58 catches for 703 yards and 9 TDs. His biggest game of the year came in his last game against Duke, a 9 catch, 113 yard, 1 TD effort that helped Miami dispatch of the Blue Devils with relative ease.
The Russell Athletic Bowl vs WVU will be Coley’s 4th bowl game, and 2nd RAB in his Miami career. The 6’1” senior WR would like to have a better game in this trip to Orlando than his last (3 catches, 32 yards), which came as a freshman.
For a player with 161 catches and nearly 2300 yards receiving, Coley has been noticeably absent from the box score in bowl games. In 3 career bowl games, Coley has been held to 10 catches for 107 yards and 1 TD. That’s a per-game average of 3.3 catches for 35.7 yards and 0.3 TD. Hardly game breaking numbers.
Now, looking forward to this year’s bowl game, Coley could have a big game. He’s had 5+ catches in 4 of Miami’s last 6 games, and could have a favorable matchup against WVU’s secondary.
WVU CB Rasul Douglas is a first team All-American and is tied for the national lead with 8 INTs, but he may be matched up against burgeoning star WR Ahmmon Richards. If that’s the case, and Coley draws WVU’s #2 CB, or a linebacker/safety/nickel back when lined up in the slot, the advantage would CLEARLY be in Coley’s favor.
Stacy Coley has the size, speed, and skill to be a factor for Miami in the Russell Athletic Bowl. With this being his final game as a Hurricane, I’m looking for Coley to approach his game averages of nearly 5 catches and 60 yards in this game. Add in a TD or 2, and that will be a nice day for him, and likely the Hurricanes’ offense as a whole.