DURHAM (CBSMiami) – The 14th Ranked Miami Hurricanes earned a 31 to 6 victory on the road at Duke.READ MORE: Cuba's Raul Castro Stepping Down From Power
This year, it didn’t take a miracle.
Malik Rosier threw for 270 yards with two touchdowns and an interception. Miami’s offense was stagnant for most of the second and third quarters, but Rosier found Ahmmon Richards over the middle for a short pass in the fourth quarter that Richards turned into a 49 yard touchdown. He found a second gear with his speed and out-ran a half dozen defenders en route to the end zone.
That Richards touchdown gave Miami some breathing room, putting the ‘Canes up 24-6. Those were the first points for either team in the second half.
Friday was Richards’ 2017 debut, after missing Miami’s first two games with a hamstring injury. Richards set Miami’s freshman receiving record with 934 yards in 2016. The Canes are happy to have him back. He caught three passes for 106 yards in the win.
Miami labored to run the football against Duke’s vaunted rushing defense for much of the game. The Blue Devils entered the game ranked second in the nation in that category, giving up just 65 rushing yards per game.
Mark Walton led the Hurricanes with 51 yards on 17 carries. Walton left the game in the fourth quarter, apparently re-aggravating an ankle injury.
Travis Homer ran for 43 yards on just three carries (14.3 YPC). He scored a 40 yard touchdown with 4:48 left in the game to put an exclamation point on Miami’s victory.READ MORE: Arrest Made In Killing Of Miami Woman Briana Paschal 2 Years Ago
Miami’s first two offensive possessions were picture perfect in the first quarter. Rosier found senior receiver Braxton Berrios in the back of the end zone for a 27 yard touchdown toss an instant before taking a hit from the Duke pass rush. That put the Hurricanes ahead 7-0.
Then on Miami’s second possession, Rosier scored on a one yard touchdown run to cap off a 7 play – 68 yard drive.
In the second half, with a 17-6 lead, it was Miami’s defense that set the tone. The Hurricanes forced four punts, a turnover on downs, and a fumble in the second half. Duke could never capitalize on promising drives.
Miami sacked Duke quarterback Daniel Jones five times and recorded eleven tackles for a loss.
Sophomore linebacker Michael Pinckney’s star shined brightest. He registered ten tackles, a sack and an interception. The sack was a big one on fourth down during Duke’s opening drive.
The Hurricanes didn’t give up a touchdown, limiting Duke to 349 total yards. It was Miami’s best defensive performance of 2017 so far.
The Hurricanes improve to 3-0. The Duke Blue Devils fall to 4-1.MORE NEWS: COVID In Florida: 7,296 New Cases, 93 Deaths Reported On Friday
Next up for Miami, they visit the Florida State Seminoles next Saturday, October 7th in Tallahassee.