The Sunday Sampler – Miami

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Perry Jones and the Hoos piled up 185 rushing yards.

The last time Virginia faced a fast and ferocious defense from the state of Florida, things didn’t go so well in Scott Stadium. On Saturday against Miami, however, the offensive line registered arguably its best game of the season as the Cavaliers dispatched the Hurricanes, 24-19.

Considering just how tenacious Miami’s defense had been coming into the game, the line’s performance proved to be outstanding by any measurement. UVa quarterback Marc Verica said the O-Line was one of the main reasons the Hoos came out with a victory.

“I thought they played tremendous. I thought they were really setting the tone, they were winning the battles at the line of scrimmage,” Verica said. “In my opinion, I think they were the biggest reason why we won.”

First and foremost, Virginia had just one turnover. Miami entered the game tied for fifth nationally with 21 turnovers gained. The Canes also led the country in passing efficiency defense; they had 14 interceptions with just three touchdown passes allowed before Saturday’s contest. Verica threw one of each.

The Hoos piled up 185 rushing yards, the second most of any offense against the Hurricanes this season, and averaged 4.0 yards per carry. FSU ripped off 298 rushing yards and averaged 7.3 yards per carry; Ohio State (181, 3.7), Clemson (162, 4.1), and UNC (149, 5.1) all fell short of Virginia’s mark from Saturday.

The Cavaliers also allowed zero sacks in the win to go with just 5 total Tackles for Loss. Miami entered the game ranked second in the nation for TFL (9.29 per game) and sacks (3.57 per game). Linebacker Sean Spence had recorded a team-best 10 TFL this season, while defensive end Allen Bailey had 3.5 TFL just last week against UNC when he earned College Football Performance Awards National Defensive Player of the Week honors. Against UVa, Bailey and Spence combined for 1.5 TFL.