Hurricanes look to go 2-0 as they host Southern Miss today.

By: Chris King

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It’s a non-conference tilt on the gridiron down in the Sunshine State as a team from the Sun Belt tangles with the big, bad ACC. The Southern Miss Golden Eagles are on the road as they make the trip to South Beach to face the #16 Miami Hurricanes Saturday afternoon. Southern Miss was upended 29-27 in quadruple overtime by Liberty at home last Saturday in their season opener. Miami started the Mario Cristobal era on a positive note as they walloped an overmatched Bethune-Cookman squad, 70-13, at home last Saturday. This marks the first time that the two programs have met as FBS opponents.

Miami Hurricanes Seek 2-0 Start Under Cristobal

Miami opened the Mario Cristobal era with an emphatic victory as they rolled over Bethune-Cookman at home. The Hurricanes look to build off that momentum and build to a 2-0 start on the year as they face another non-conference opponent in this contest. Miami gave up a field goal on their opening drive before taking control with 28 unanswered points. That sent the Hurricanes on their way to a blowout win. The Hurricanes rolled up a commanding 586-342 advantage in total offense, racked up a 31-13 edge in first downs, and forced three takeaways while committing only one. Miami did score on a pick-six, helping shake off a 30:15 to 29:45 disadvantage in time of possession in the contest.

Tyler Van Dyke connected on 13 of 16 pass attempts for 193 yards and two touchdowns in the contest. Jake Garcia hit all seven of his throws for 88 yards in a relief role. Henry Parrish Jr. was the leading ground gainer for Miami as he ran the ball 14 times for 108 yards and three scores. Thaddius Franklin Jr. (nine carries, 78 yards, two TD), Lucious Stanley (six carries, 42 yards), Terrell Walden II (five carries, 41 yards, TD) and Devon Perry (five carries, 31 yards, TD) all were effective on the ground as well. Xavier Restrepo (five catches, 100 yards, TD) led the team in receptions while Parrish Jr. (three receptions, 25 yards) was the only other player to reel in more than two catches in the game. Gilbert Frierson scored a defensive touchdown with a pick-six for the Hurricanes. Andres Borregales knocked through all 10 extra point attempts while not attempting a field goal in the contest.

Southern Miss Golden Eagles Try to Shake Off Heartbreaker

Southern Miss gave Liberty all it wanted in their season opener last week but ended up falling short in quadruple overtime. The Golden Eagles now head on the road and try to take down a ranked foe in order to avoid falling to 0-2 on the season. Southern Miss trailed 10-3 at the half, stood tied at 10 after three quarters and led twice in the fourth quarter only to give up the tying score both times. The Golden Eagles took a 24-17 lead with 1:54 to play only to give up the tying score with 36 seconds remaining in regulation. In overtime, the teams didn’t score in the first overtime, traded field goals in the second overtime and did nothing in the third overtime. During the fourth overtime, Liberty converted their two-point conversion while Southern Miss came up empty. The Golden Eagles were outgained 447-389 in total offense, gave up 23 first downs while picking up 19, and turned the ball over five times while forcing three takeaways. That more than offset a 30:54 to 29:06 advantage in time of possession.

Ty Keyes was four of eight passing for 89 yards with no touchdowns and two interceptions. He finished with seven carries for 27 yards on the ground. Frank Gore Jr. completed one of four passes for 48 yards but did his damage with his legs as he carried the ball 32 times for 178 yards plus two scores. Trey Lowe’s lone pass attempt in the game was intercepted. Antavious Willis (eight carries, 34 yards) and Dajon Richard (four carries, nine yards) also saw work in the run game. Jakarius Caston was the lone player with more than one reception as he finished with two catches for 54 yards in the loss. Eric Scott Jr. scored on a pick-six for Southern Miss in the contest. Briggs Bourgeois was two of three on field goal attempts in the game, connecting from 39 and 53 while missing from 34, and hit all three extra point attempts.

Southern Miss has a terrific running back in Gore Jr., who gets to face his father’s alma mater in this contest. The problem for the Golden Eagles is that they don’t have much else offensively to rely on at this point in time. They have no passing game to speak of and they’re going to be hard-pressed to find a way to slow down and contain the Hurricanes’ offensive attack. Miami was tremendous in their opener and while they demolished a lesser team in Bethune-Cookman, it’s hard to have optimism in Southern Miss’s chances. Miami scored at will last week and Southern Miss hasn’t been considered a good defensive team in several years. There’s no reason to think that the Hurricanes are slowed much in this contest. Take Miami and give the points as they roll to a 2-0 start.

Prediction: Miami Hurricanes -24.5

Written By Chris King , “Chris King”

Chris King has been immersed in the world of professional and collegiate sports for more than three decades. Whether it’s playing pickup games or being involved in organized sports to being a fan, he’s checked all the boxes. From the NFL to arena football, the NHL to the KHL, the NBA to the WNBA to college hoops, and even MLB to the KBO.  If it’s out there, he’s covered it and bet on it as well, as Chris has been an expert bettor in his career.  Before joining Winners and Whiners back in 2015, his work appeared around the internet and in print. He’s written books for Ruckus Books about college basketball, the NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL, golf, and the World Cup. If you’re looking for the inside track on hitting a winner, do yourself a favor and read what Chris has to say.