There was much to smile about during the Hurricanes 52-27 thumping over the Louisville Cardinals on November 9th. However, the overall defensive performance wasn’t one of them.
While the defense made enough plays to help the Hurricanes win, statistically it was Miami’s worst performance of the year on that side of the ball. Louisville gained 496 yards of total offense against the Canes, Miami came into the game having not allowed over 400 the entire season. In fact, it was the most yards UM had given up in a game since 2016.
The Cardinals used two quarterbacks against Miami during the day, Micale Cunningham and Evan Conley, and the two combined to throw for 328 yards, averaging over 11 yards per pass. Miami also allowed 168 rushing yards, which was their third worst game of the year.
The Hurricanes defense allowed several big plays throughout the game, like this 80-yard pass to Tutu Atwell who somehow slipped through for a long touchdown. So it was obvious that the Louisville speed gave Miami problems at times.
Miami came into the game with its pass rush playing at a high level, amassing nine sacks the week prior to their matchup against Louisville. The Cardinals obviously made it a point to double team defensive end Gregory Rousseau, as he only accounted for one tackle during the day.
Though, the Canes defense started to settle down as the game went on, and they relied on turnovers, such as this crucial DJ Ivey interception as the first half was winding down. Miami forced three turnovers on the day.
DJ Ivey with 3 interceptions in the last 3 games pic.twitter.com/eaZfxHxZmz— Bring Daz To Miami (@hurricanesmarsh) November 20, 2019
They also totaled three sacks as well as 14 TFLs, and with Rousseau being a major focus, it allowed players like Jonathan Garvin the chance to run free and chase the quarterback.
Rousseau is double teamed, so that allows Jon Garvin to beat his guy and get the sack pic.twitter.com/e4uygLjgt6— Bring Daz To Miami (@hurricanesmarsh) November 11, 2019
Though the Canes came away with the comfortable win, it was an uncharacteristic performance from a defense that we’ve grown accustomed to dominating their opponents.
Canes defense last 2 games:— Bring Daz To Miami (@hurricanesmarsh) November 6, 2019
22 points allowed
They’ll look to get back on track this upcoming Saturday when they play the FIU Panthers at Marlins Park. Coming into Saturday, FIU’s offense is averaging 383.6 yards per game, and also putting up 26.1 PPG this season.