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Canes Football Game preview: Week 4 vs FIU

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For the first time since 2007, the Canes take on FIU

Florida International Panthers v Miami Hurricanes Photo by Marc Serota/Getty Images

Its been eleven years, but for the third time ever and the first time since 2007, the Hurricanes will take on the Golden Panthers of FIU.

The meeting and renewal of this series was set back in 2014, and the two teams will play again in 2019, though the location and date have not been specified.

The last time these two teams met was in 2007, even though they’re separated by only 9 miles. That meeting resulted in a 23-9 Canes victory.

Though the meeting that most fans remember about this “rivalry” is from 2006, which resulted in a bench-clearing brawl at the Orange Bowl, which led to the suspension of 31 total players. Whether you were embarrassed by the brawl or it pumped you up, it was no doubt one of the most iconic Miami moments in the program’s history.

On September 22nd, former Miami head coach Butch Davis lead his team into Hard Rock Stadium, and hopefully the Canes will be 3-0 and ranked in the top 10. Following LSU in week one, the Canes then face Savannah State, then travel to Toledo, before heading home for this FIU game.

FIU will also have a golden oppurtunity to be 3-0 going into the game.

In his first season as coach for the Golden Panthers, also located in Miami, Davis led his team to an 8-5 record, tied for best in school history.

Since leaving Miami following the 2000 season, Davis has coached against Miami four times. From 2007-2010, while the head coach at North Carolina, Davis compiled a 3-1 record against his former Hurricanes.

FIU ON OFFENSE:

Though after a successful 2017 season, Butch will replace the majority of his offense. Gone is quarterback Alex McGough, leading rusher Alex Gardner and top wideout Thomas Owens. They’ll also be without their tight end, as well several of their lineman

The Golden Panthers welcome in graduate transfer James Morgan, who started 13 games for Bowling Green in 2017.

Running back Anthony Jones returns for FIU after missing all of 2017 with a knee injury. The offense also brings in two three-star running backs.

In terms of matchups, FIU was 74th in the country last season in scoring offense, putting up over 26 points per game. However, with returning staters and role players from 2017, expect the Canes defense to hold the Panthers to less than that.

FIU ON DEFENSE:

On defense, they’ll be without seven of their top 11 starters on defense.

Returning for FIU on defense is defensive tackle Anthony Johnson as well as cornerback Isaiah Brown.

Defensively in 2017, FIU struggled even more, ranking 89th in the country and giving up over 400 yards per game.

THE GAME:

Just like any other game, expect Miami to come out a little slow. In 2017, the Hurricanes always struggled in the first half against teams they were supposed to blow out, including North Carolina and Bethune-Cookman.

However, this is a game that Miami will most likely win. The running game will run down the young Golden Panthers defense and wear them out. The experienced Hurricanes defense will no doubt come to play against an FIU offense that returns very few starters.

Expect an easy Miami win, and most importantly a 4-0 start to the season.

After a prime-time matchup in week one against LSU, Miami will face three straight teams that should result in wins, FIU being the last. Following Davis’ teams visit, the real season begins, with North Carolina coming to Miami the next Friday to begin ACC play.