Although the Hurricanes had quite a few injuries added to their list during the game against Toledo, the team overall has managed to finesse a huge win and impress critics with an outstanding performance by Malik Rosier and an explosive Miami offense. What also managed to catch people’s attention was the U’s defense. Injuries aside, the D showed up to hold the Rockets back from making a comeback in the third quarter. With a performance like this following their 77-0 shutout against Savannah State, they’re beginning to be nationally ranked for it.
According to the Miami Herald, the Hurricanes has risen to fourth in the nation for total defense. This includes leading the nation in tackles for loss, stopping opponents on third down, and being the 23rd best rush-defense in the nation. According to the piece, the team hasn’t made an official statement about the player’s status either for FIU or the entire season, but Richt has stated that the injury is not as severe as Ahmmon Richard’s injury last year.
It’s obvious that the Savannah State game could be considered as huge factor for this national ranking. But blowout aside, that defense shows some promise if they continue to develop as well as the stars being healthy. Gerald Willis had 14 tackles against Toledo alone fighting cramps, and the Canes constantly sent the Toledo offense backwards while Jaquan Johnson was still recovering from a hamstring injury (which left the back open for a couple of critical Rocket passes). They also kind of scared LSU in the first quarter, and some of the younger linebackers, like Michael Pinckney has been able to shine in that game.