Miami Hurricanes suffer catastrophic loss against NC State

Miami Hurricanes NC State

Photo by Miami Hurricanes


Miami, Florida –Despite the efforts of the defense and special teams, the Miami Hurricanes never saw the endzone falling to the NC State Wolfpack 20-6. Tyler Van Dyke’s struggles continued compiling 173 yards and throwing three interceptions in the ignominious defeat. Although the Canes dominated time of possession (35:16-24:44) they were ineffective on third down (four of 15) and committed four turnovers. The only bright spots were Mark Fletcher Jr., who rushed for 115 yards, and Andy Borregales hitting two of three field goals generating all of UM’s points.

Miami’s best chance came in the fourth quarter. Down 10-6 the Hurricanes went for it on fourth and one at the Wolfpack’s three-yard line. Van Dyke handed the ball to Fletcher but the running back was stopped short of the marker. NC State broke out of its poor field position converting on a crucial third and seven deep on their own six-yard line. Backup quarterback MJ Morris found Kevin Concepcion for the 16-yard first down. With additional room, the Wolfpack ultimately scored when Kendrick Raphael broke loose bouncing off a tackle for the 31-yard rushing touchdown.

Things went from bad to worse. Brashard Smith’s 41-yard kick return went to waste as Van Dyke couldn’t get any traction. With no choice but to go for it on fourth and 18, Van Dyke’s last throw of the night was intercepted. Defending from deep inside their own territory the Canes fought on, denying NC State another TD in a pyrrhic victory. Slipping to 6-3 (2-3, ACC) UM travels to Doak S. Campbell Stadium for week 11 against undefeated Florida State.

Takeaways

The offense was a mess

If TVD ever made a case for getting benched he certainly did so tonight. To be fair, he did feel pressure. NC State recorded three sacks, seven QB hurries, and three pass breakups. However, that’s still no excuse for how badly he performed. It’s no secret how solid the Wolfpack’s defense is. I will say that those two dropped passes by the tight ends (Cam McCormick and Riley Williams) can’t be ignored. By the way, I was perfectly fine with the team going for it on fourth down. I just wish Van Dyke faked the handoff and threw it to an open Colbie Young.

The most glaring stat is this: Van Dyke has thrown 10 interceptions in his last four starts. He’s thrown as many INTs in 2023 (11) as his previous two seasons combined. Something has to change. Fans are calling for a switch but the problem is Emory Williams needs more time and we’ve seen nothing from Jacurri Brown. In other words, it may be Van Dyke once more against the Seminoles. The Miami Hurricanes really did drop the ball against NC State.

Defense played its heart out

I don’t care what anyone says. The defense did its job. Granted, I wish they stopped the Wolfpack after the costly turnover. The unit held their opponents to 20 points. Three touchdowns is not a tough task for a respectable offense. NC State too, struggled on third down only converting three times in 11 tries. They also pulled off two takeaways of their own in the form of Kamren Kinchens’ 10th career pick (he almost had two Saturday night) and the fumble forced by Jaden Davis when he sacked Morris recovered by Jared Harrison-Hunte. It was during a wild period in the game that saw four straight possessions result in turnovers.

The defense kept on fighting to the very end even when the game was already lost. I can only imagine the frustration of such an effort gone to waste. The ineptness of the offense finally caught up with them.

Hats off to Fletcher

Kudos to Mark Fletcher for hitting the centennial mark. As I said, the freshman rusher was one of the few bright spots in an otherwise putrid outing by the offense. In the preview, I previously mentioned wanting to see Fletcher get more touches and that’s exactly what occurred. Recording 23 carries for 115 yards, he averaged five yards a carry. Not bad considering NC State is good against the run.

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