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Film Review: Virginia 9 - Miami 17

The ‘Canes upset the Cavaliers, yes, you read that right.

Virginia v Miami Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images

The Miami Hurricanes upset the Virginia Cavaliers. Regardless of Vegas odds, an unranked beat a ranked team and that’s an upset. Manny Diaz picked up his first ACC win and Miami finally beat a power 5 team for the first time in what feels like a decade. If you were to look at the box score you would think the Hurricanes lost. Miami finished 2-for-10 on third downs, lost the total yards and time of possession (two things I don’t care about but many do) and the penalty battle. Miami also lost in the tackles for loss column, but had more sacks than the Hoos.

The ‘Canes won the turnover battle. Miami stopped UVA on a 4th and 1 and came away with a fumble recovery. Those pointless, lost drives put away the Cavaliers. Oh and a stop inside the red zone to start the 4th quarter with Miami up 7-3.

It’s little things like that, which can force victories. Both offenses struggled and played a Big Ten football game from 1997. Bryce Perkins averaged only six yards per passing attempt and failed to score. N’Kosi Perry averaged 6.7 yards per attempt but scored once through the air and once on the ground. I’m not sure if Perry will remain the quarterback once Jarren Williams’ shoulder is healed but here the ‘Canes are at 3-3.

Virginia v Miami Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images

Little did we know...

Little did we know Dan Enos has been setting us all up for weeks. The ‘Canes lost to Virginia Tech and UNC while struggling with Central Michigan just to set up this screen first to Deejay Dallas and then to Brevin Jordan against UVA.

The screen to Dallas for Perry’s only touchdown throw was a little less Dan Enos than usual. There’s the under center and slow developing parts but not the lumbering pulling guard part that really makes a Dan Enos play a Dan Enos play.

N’Kosi Perry is under center, there’s slow developing play action, Navaughn Donaldson has to pull across the formation and the throwback screen works.

If the UVA flat defender who blitzes came off on Perry and didn’t squeeze down to the back, Perry is probably knocked out. But if it works, it works.

Film preview becomes film review

In my film preview for this game (read that here) I said the Miami offense needed to set up and read flat defenders. I was speaking a lot more about RPO’s, but Dan Enos learned from this look where Mark Richt and Thomas Brown didn’t a year ago. Check the screenshot from the film preview below. This was the 2018 game, and Coach Enos looks like he just let Perry run a simple vertical with the slot running an out. The slot receiver was wide open.

Finding holes in space and coverage is the key to being an offensive coordinator and a quarterback. That’s what your OC has to do with your quarterback. Let him line up, see deep quarters, see a blitzing flat defender and check to the out route.


In 2018, the Cavaliers played quarters coverage, brought some pressure and shut the Miami offense completely down. It’s not like the Miami offense was on fire on Friday night at Hard Rock but the line held the Cavaliers to three sacks and two hurries which for Zion Nelson and the fellas is quite the upgrade. Bronco Mendenhall was going to look towards bringing pressure and playing off over the top but Perry did a good job of mixing a few deep shots and not turning the ball over like the ‘Canes did against the Hokies.

Enjoy it. A win is a win. Miami faces Georgia Tech next week which will be a chance to get the offense really going against the Jackets.