Friday, September 25, 2009

Miami at Virginia Tech Prediction: Saturday September 26


Miami Hurricanes at Virginia Tech Hokies
Saturday 3:30 PM ABC
Line: Mia -2.5 (open -2)

After a 2-0 start, Miami travels to Blacksburg to face Virginia Tech in a game that could decide the Coastal Division in the ACC. Virginia Tech is 2-1 after home wins over Marshall and Nebraska.

Last Meeting - Miami 16 Va Tech 14 Miami, FL 2008
The Hokies were playing their second straight Thursday night game and lost a close one to Miami briefly relinquishing control of the Coastal Division. Va Tech's o line allowed six sacks in just 20 pass attempts and 126 yards rushing to Miami.

Keys to the Game

1. Pressure on the QB

Miami's Jacory Harris has not faced much of it in throwing for 656 yards in two games this season. His play and that of the offensive line are the two biggest reasons Miami's offense has been so potent this season.

The Hokies line is doing a little better this year giving up five sacks in three games. But Miami's defensive line is looking more like the Miami's defenses of old with mammoth DT Allen Bailey leading the way. With QB Tyrod Taylor's rushing ability, it will be important for Miami to maintain containment against the speedy Hokie QB.


Tyrod Taylor has to be a play maker on Saturday

2. Rush Defense

The Hokies have to do a better job than the 200 ypg they have been giving up so far this year. While Miami has preferred to throw the ball, they are still averaging 137 rush yards per game. If Miami can run the ball close to their average then they keep Bud Fosters' Hokie D off balance.

On the flip side, Miami wants to make Taylor beat them with his arm where he is completing just under 48% of his passes. The Hurricanes kept ACC leading rusher Georgia Tech to under 100 yards rushing last week.


Frank Beamer may use some body english to get his defense going Saturday

3. Special Teams

Beamer Ball kept the Hokies in the Alabama game for three quarters despite being grossly out gained with a kickoff return and great containment of Javier Arenas.

Miami PK Matt Bosher, normally very reliable, missed two short field goals last week. In a close game he may be called upon late and needs more focus than he had last Thursday. Miami's Travis Benjamin can be very dangerous on punt returns.


Randy Shannon is quietly confident his team can start 3-0 in the ACC

Prediction

Nobody is hotter than Harris and the Miami offense right now. If VT cannot solve their woes stopping the run then it could be a long day for Frank Beamer's team. For the Hokies to win this game, they have to win the turnover battle, keep Miami's offense off the field, and get some big plays on special teams.

But the recent meetings point to a Tech cover. Miami is 1-7 ATS in the last 8 meetings with Va Tech; the underdog is 6-2 ATS.

I see this game coming right down to the end, but the Hurricanes solid kicking game wins it for them in the end.


Miami 24 Virginia Tech 21
Miami Covers -2.5

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2 comments:

  1. Brent H.3:22 PM

    I understand the prediction, seeing as how sports media seems to think Miami is clearly a national title contender after two games... I just don't think they're as good as everyone says right now.

    Their offense has looked good because of poor defensive performances by FSU and GT. I don't think they are really that good. I'll sing a different song if they prove me wrong tomorrow, but I think even a below-average Bud Foster defense makes them look inept on offense.

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  2. Brent H.8:37 PM

    I'd like to say thank you to all my fans... ;) haha... I really enjoyed that game.

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