During the latest episode of the Storm Surge podcast, their guest Chris Landry of LandryFootball.com said of the Hurricanes, “they’ve got to get more consistency out of the passing game, but that’s only going to come from more consistency out of the running game.” That struck me, because so many people have been talking about Miami’s passing game, but nobody is talking about how UM’s running game is going to influence it.
There’s no questioning the talent that the Hurricanes have at the running back position. Going into 2019, Miami has a trio of dangerous players at RB; DeeJay Dallas, Cam’ron Harris and Lorenzo Lingard. Dallas will be leading the charge as the junior, but Harris showed great potential at the end of 2018 and also in spring practice.
Lingard, though injured through most of last season and missing the spring, has enough talent that everyone is already penciling him in as one of the breakout stars for Miami.
While they all three, including Travis Homer, gave us great highlights in 2018, Miami still finished 45th in the nation when it came to rushing, averaging 191.5 yards per game. They were super against Duke (300 yards) and Pitt (293 yards), but not so super against LSU (83 yards) and FSU (102 yards).
If you know football, you know that most good passing teams, have a powerful ground game to go along with it, and just not go along, but good enough to open it up for the quarterback to air it out.
Trevor Lawrence passed for 3,280 yards last year, but Clemson also had the nations 10th best rushing attack and 248.2 yards per game. Kyler Murray was masterful with 4,361 yards in 2018, and 247.4 yards running the football was a big component in that.
If you look at the Hurricanes offense in the early 2000’s, yes Miami had a fantastic quarterback in Ken Dorsey, it also didn’t hurt when you had Clinton Portis and Willis McGahee making defenses live in fear.
In 2018, Miami’s passing offense was the complete opposite of opposing to the defense. Ranking 112th in the country in that category, UM quarterbacks averaged only 167.3 yards through the air per game.
There were many reasons why the Hurricanes passing game wasn’t affective in 2018. Bad play calling, incapabilities in the quarterbacks themselves, and also that Miami’s running attack wasn’t feared by opponents.
Here is video of DeeJay Dallas’ 3-yard TD run pic.twitter.com/UkayeFPH3y— Manny Navarro (@Manny_Navarro) April 13, 2019
Heading into this new 2019 season, Miami’s running game is going to have to become more consistent. The Hurricanes can’t afford to run the football for 268 yards against Toledo, and then total under 150 in games like Virginia, Boston College and Georgia Tech when the ACC Coastal is on the line.
#UM says top performers offensively included running back Cam'ron Harris (five carries, 32 yards), running back DeeJay Dallas (38 rushing yards) and tight end Will Mallory (four receptions, 62 yards, two touchdowns).— Manny Navarro (@Manny_Navarro) April 6, 2019
With Dallas, Harris and Lingard, I believe that Miami can have that strong attack running the ball. If they’re able to do that, expect Tate Martell, N’Kosi Perry, Jarren Williams, or any Canes quarterback to have a much better season throwing.