Emotions were high in this marquee matchup. The Canes took control of this rivalry game very early when Jarren Willams threw a beautiful 39-yard TD pass to Jeff Thomas in the first quarter. After a terrific fourth down stop in the second quarter, Williams hit Michael Harley for a deep pass down the sideline. That drive was capped off by a DeeJay Dallas scoring run. The defense was dominant all game. The Canes has 4 first half sacks. In the second half, the sacks continued to stack up and Dee Wiggins entered the touchdown party. The Canes finished with 4 plays that went for over 30 yards in this momentous win. Miami has now beaten FSU three years in a row.
First Star: Jarren Williams
Rivalry games are where legacies are made. After Jarren Williams was injured a few games ago, he watched the Hurricanes split two starts without him. Playing Florida State Seminoles in your first start back as a starter, could’ve been a consuming task. The redshirt freshman quarterback came out poised and showed off his arm throughout the game. In the second quarter, he hit Michael Harley, K.J. Osborn, and Brevin Jordan on 4th down to help the Canes secure a 2 TD lead. Williams reclaimed the two touchdown lead with a bomb to Dee Wiggins in the fourth quarter. He wasn’t flawless but the deep passing game found its footing today and that’s purely a result of Jarren and his playmaking.
Second Star: Gregory Rousseau
This is truly a nod to the defensive line and its best player. Rousseau and Miami’s defensive line set the line of scrimmage through two halves. The relentless and talented defensive lineman had four sacks in the game. Rousseau now has twelve sacks on the season, which is an astonishing number for a player who started the season on the bench. Nesta Silvera, Jonathan Garvin, Jonathan Ford, Trevon Hill, and company helped stack 9 sacks in total. Watching them rush the passer was a thing of beauty.
Third Star: Shaquille Quarterman
Cam Akers had 10 carries for 22 yards in the first half. The front seven truly played lights out early on. When Florida State invested in the “Wild Cam” package in the second half, the defense showed some signs of loosening up. Quarterman and the defense regrouped and Akers finished with a just 44 yards in the second half. Akers’ 66 yards on the ground ended his two-game, 100+ yard rushing streak. Number 55 was great at diagnosing plays and wrapping up throughout this war in the trenches.
Honorable Mention: DeeJay Dallas
DeeJay Dallas had a workman like day. Outside of the long screen play, he didn’t have many of those explosive plays that we’re used to seeing. However, he ran hard and his dynamic ability showed up on several plays, including a great TD run in the second quarter. It wasn’t just Dallas’ ability to run and catch that helped the Canes in this huge victory, it as also his blocking. On several of Miami’s deep passes, it was Dallas who swiped along the line of scrimmage and picked up the blitzing defender.
Who are your three stars of the game?