By Mike Cugno

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CORAL GABLES (CBSMiami) – The Miami Hurricanes are preparing to do something the team has never done before; play in the ACC Championship Game.

Miami needs to beat top-ranked Clemson to keep their College Football Playoff hopes alive.

The Canes can’t dwell on last week’s disappointing loss to Pittsburgh.

Staring them right in the face is their first ACC title game appearance, and It’s against the new No. 1 team in the country according the latest AP Poll.

“When you fall one time they like to say that everything was a fraud,” said Miami linebacker Shaq Quarterman. “’You guys are whatever-whatever.’ We definitely feel that disrespect. From the polls – and I don’t even look at the polls. Just hearing about it. It’s a bad taste in our mouths.”

The underdog role is one that is relished by the Hurricanes.

“I say we play the same every time but I feel like we just have more of an edge when people are doubting us,” said wide receiver Ahmmon Richards.

Miami is a touchdown underdog to the defending champs.

A 58-point loss to the Tigers back in 2015 still lingers around the Hurricanes’ Coral Gables campus.

“I’ve been telling them add [Clemson] on the hit list,” said Miami defensive lineman Chad Thoams. “We had a little hit list from the teams that beat us last year but they still on there. You know just add them to it. We just have to play football.”

The Hurricanes’ hit list featured the four teams that beat them last season; Florida State, North Carolina, Virginia Tech and Notre Dame.

Miami played, and defeated, all four teams this season.

As far as QB Malik rosier is concerned, coaches and players say their starting signal caller has responded well to getting benched.

“To be honest with you this is his best week of preparation so far,” Hurricanes offensive coordinator Thomas Brown said of Rosier. “I’m not just saying that because we lost but Sunday night was his best night. It was our best night as an offense. Today was a great practice. One of our best Tuesdays all year because it starts with the quarterback and when he has the right mindset, taking charge pushing the tempo, everyone else responds.”

No matter what happens Saturday, this will be considered a very successful season for Miami.

But they did pick up one win today with head coach Mark Richt being named ACC Coach of the Year.

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