CORAL GABLES (CBSMiami) – The Miami Hurricanes are preparing for a huge game on Saturday at Sun Life Stadium against ACC Coastal Division rival Virginia Tech.
A win by Miami gets them into the Coastal race and sets up a huge game next week against Clemson. A loss puts Miami on the doorstep of doomsday.
The Hokies come into this game much more confident than they were two weeks ago after suffering their 3rd loss of the season to the Pittsburgh Panthers.
Virginia Tech played well in a win last week over North Carolina State and they’re 4-2 in their last 6 games against Miami in South Florida.
“Virginia Tech has an aggressive defense and they’re going to get in your face,” said Hurricanes head coach Al Golden. “We have to protect in the pass game and win our one on one’s down the field. We also need to generate a run game or they’re just going to be relentless with their pressure. On the other side of the ball they like to get a bunch of different players involved. Isaiah Ford is a big play receiver and they love to use their tight ends.”
Taking care of the ball is essential in order for Miami to win this game. Virginia Tech owns a +7 turnover margin in six ACC games between the Hokies and Hurricanes played in South Florida.
In its four wins, VT is +9 and has outscored the Hurricanes by a 106-61 margin.
“We have to do a great job of taking care of the ball and need more deflections, forced fumbles, strips and interceptions on defense” said Golden.
This game can’t turn into one way traffic for Virginia Tech where the Hokies capitalize on Miami mistakes.
The keys for Miami will be pass protection, getting off the field on 3rd down and making big plays for touchdowns.
A victory for Miami and maybe the confidence of the team grows putting them in position for something special, but if they play with an FSU hangover they will get severely punished and will nearly be knocked out of the race.
Listen to the Miami Hurricanes take on the Virginia Tech Hokies this Saturday at 3:30 p.m. on Sports Radio 560 WQAM, your official radio home for the Canes!
Follow Joe Zagacki on Twitter (@canesvoice)