Orange Bowl: Studying the Miami Hurricane Offense

CHARLOTTE, NC - DECEMBER 02: Malik Rosier /

Badger of Honor is doing its best to break down all aspects of the Miami Hurricanes to prepare for Wisconsin’s Orange Bowl opponent.

The Miami Hurricanes enter the Orange Bowl in an offensive funk from its final two games.  Miami mustered just 14 points against Pittsburgh and just three in the ACC title game.

But in its 10 wins to open the season, the Hurricanes never failed to score at least 24 points.    They also posted more than 40 points on four different occasions.

So the good news for Wisconsin is that the Hurricanes aren’t likely to be as explosive offensively at The Ohio State.  Of course, few teams in college football are.

So lets start by sizing up where the Hurricanes rank in significant offensive statistical categories.  As always, these are based on national NCAA numbers.

  • Scoring Offense: T-#57 (29.5 points per game)
  • Red Zone Offense: #11 (.927)
  • First Downs: #89 (234)
  • 3rd Downs: #124 (.294)
  • Rushing Offense: #73 (159.7 yards per game)
  • Passing Offense: #50 (245.8 yards per game)
  • Tackles-for-Loss Allowed: T-#27 (5.08 allowed per game)

Honestly looking at this numbers makes me think Miami is going to have to get pretty creative in its play calls and schemes.  Given the layoff a couple trick plays are definitely warranted.

Wisconsin Badgers Football
Wisconsin Badgers Football /

Wisconsin Badgers Football

Because these statistics don’t overwhelm me.  I think the Wisconsin defense can afford to be hyper aggressive.  There is no evidence based on the stats to think the Hurricanes can really hurt you in any specific area.

Miami really isn’t remarkable in any category beyond the red zone.  So keep them out of the red zone is important.  But like, when isn’t that the goal of every defense?

That third down conversion mark is miserable.  And Wisconsin has the #7 3rd down defense in the nation.  Combine that with Miami’s struggles allowing TFLs (Badgers average 6.5 TFL/game) and you can see how that down is going to be a problem.

Of course, you struggle allowing TFLs you are going to get behind the chains.  You get behind the chains and you can’t convert third downs.  You can’t convert third downs you aren’t getting first downs.  You aren’t getting first downs and you aren’t getting points.

Consequently, this looks like a fairly pedestrian Miami offense.  Therefore, I think Wisconsin has the clear advantage whenever Miami has the football.