No. 2 Florida State (9-0, 6-0 ACC) at Miami (6-3, 3-2 ACC)
When/Where: Saturday, 8 p.m., Sun Life Stadium (76,100)
TV/Radio: ESPN/Seminole IMG Radio Network (103.1 FM in Tallahassee)
Coach: Al Golden (28-18 in four seasons at Miami, 55-52 overall)
Last game: Duke Johnson torched North Carolina for 226 total yards and three touchdowns in a 47-20 rout over the Tar Heels on Nov. 1. The victory extended UM’s season-long winning streak to three. Freshman quarterback Brad Kaaya had an efficient day, completing 11 of 17 passes for 189 yards and three scores.
Last game vs. Florida State: Playing against his hometown team, Miami native Devonta Freeman posted career highs for all-purpose yards (176) and touchdowns (3) as the third-ranked FSU cruised to a 41-14 victory over the undefeated Hurricanes on Nov. 2, 2013.
Miami vs. Florida State all-time: Miami leads the all-time series 31-27. Since UM joined the ACC in 2004, FSU is 7-4 against the Hurricanes.
FSU vs. Miami since 1990
1990: No. 9 MIAMI 31, No. 2 Florida State 22
1991: No. 2 Miami 17, No. 1 FLORIDA STATE 16
1992: No. 2 MIAMI 19, No. 3 Florida State 16
1993: No. 1 FLORIDA STATE 28, No. 3 Miami 10
1994: No. 14 MIAMI 34, No. 3 Florida State 20
1995: No. 1 FLORIDA STATE 41, Miami 17
1996: No. 3 Florida State 34, No. 6 MIAMI 16
1997: No. 4 FLORIDA STATE 47, Miami 0
1998: No. 8 Florida State 26, MIAMI 14
1999: No. 1 FLORIDA STATE 31, Miami 21
2000: No. 4 MIAMI 27, No. 1 Florida State 24
2001: No. 2 Miami 47, No. 14 FLORIDA STATE 29
2002: No. 1 MIAMI 28, No. 9 Florida State 27
2003: No. 2 Miami 22, No. 5 FLORIDA STATE 14
2003: No. 10 Miami 16, No. 9 Florida State 14 (Orange Bowl)
2004: No. 5 MIAMI 16, No. 4 Florida State 10 (OT)
2005: No. 14 FLORIDA STATE 10, No. 9 Miami 7
2006: No. 11 Florida State 13, No. 12 MIAMI 10
2007: Miami 37, FLORIDA STATE 29
2008: Florida State 41, MIAMI 39
2009: Miami 38, No. 18 FLORIDA STATE 34
2010: No. 24 Florida State 45, MIAMI 17
2011: FLORIDA STATE 23, Miami 19
2012: No. 12 Florida State 33, MIAMI 20
2013: No. 3 FLORIDA STATE 3, No. 7 Miami
2014: No. 2 Florida State at MIAMI, Nov. 15, 8 p.m.
One offensive and defensive player from each team who could swing the game
Miami: Johnson rightly grabs his share of attention, but Miami’s hopes in this one could hinge largely on freshman quarterback Brad Kaaya. He arrived with a four-star pedigree but was thrust into action following the departure of assumed starter Ryan Williams. After struggling to losses in two of his first four games, Kaaya seems to have found his stride. He’s got 20 touchdowns against just nine interceptions and leads the ACC in passing touchdowns, pass efficiency and yards per completion.
Turnovers are always important, especially in a rivalry game played on the road and at night. Miami defensive back Deon Bush is tied for second in the nation with four forced fumbles this season, and the Hurricanes are in a tie for fifth with 11 fumble recoveries on the season.
Florida State: It feels like cheating to say Rashad Greene, since he’s been so outstanding on a consistent basis. But Greene is coming off a career performance (13 catches, 136 yards and a TD against Virginia) and this game could be his last chance to show out in his adopted hometown. And Greene will likely need to be at his best against a Miami secondary that ranks 10th nationally against the pass.
We saw last week what a healthy Mario Edwards means to FSU’s defense. He was a force from the outset, causing a fumble on UVA’s first play, and posted career-best numbers in the win. If Edwards can play at that level again, he’ll be a disruptive force to Kaaya and maybe even Johnson.
Total offense: FSU: 449.8 YPG (38th nationally); UM: 436.9 (44th)
Scoring offense: FSU: 37.9 PPG (15th); UM: 33.0 PPG (42nd)
Passing offense: FSU: 319.9 YPG (10th); UM: 237.6 YPG (60th)
Rushing offense: FSU: 135.7 YPG (101st); UM: 199.3 (37th)
Total defense: FSU: 374.0 YPG (49th); UM: 312.4 (11th)
Scoring defense: FSU: 22.4 PPG (32nd); UM: 21.9 PPG (25th)
Passing defense: FSU: 238.8 YPG (81st); UM: 180.6 YPG (10th)
Rushing defense: FSU: 135.7 YPG (35th); UM: 131.9 (31st)
“I thought the name of the game was to keep winning. I don’t know what (message) they’re trying to send or what’s trying to go on. … we’ve just got to control what we can control and keep playing well.” — FSU coach Jimbo Fisher on FSU’s place in the College Football Playoff rankings.
“You come to Miami to beat Florida State. It’s been four years and we haven’t beaten them. It’s been a rough road in that sense, but we have a great shot coming up this Saturday.” – Miami lineman Shane McDermott on what a win over FSU would mean for Miami.
“They’re doing well. Starting to get better and starting to win. The confidence of the team – and they’re taking it in a rivalry game and having it at home – it’s different. It’s definitely going to be a hostile environment and it’s going to be a tough game. Blood, sweat and tears out there.” – FSU running back Karlos Williams on what he expects to see from the Hurricanes on Saturday.
“That’s definitely one of the things we want to do — bother him, bother him early. Hit him, hit him often.” – Mario Edwards on FSU’s approach to stopping UM quarterback Brad Kaaya.
It’s somewhat slim pickings in the video department this week. But this collection of home movies from Miami in the early 1950s is pretty cool. You just might have to provide your own music.
There’s just something unique about the Florida State-Miami game. Some of the defining moments in each programs’ history have come in games against the other – yes, often times at FSU’s expense.
It’s undeniable, though, that the Seminoles have gotten the better of UM in recent years and that Miami’s home-field advantage hasn’t been quite the same since it left the Orange Bowl.
Still, if there were ever a time when the Hurricanes were going to rise up and put together a complete game, this would be it. There’s a primetime T.V. broadcast, a stadium that will likely be sold out by kickoff and an undefeated, top-ranked rival coming to town.
FSU should expect a challenge. The Seminoles have shown themselves this year to be a better team than Miami and, more importantly, should have an advantage at the quarterback position, where reigning Heisman winner Jameis Winston is pitted against freshman Brad Kaaya, who will be playing in the biggest contest of his young life. But this is the FSU-Miami game. Strange things happen. It shouldn’t come as a surprise if this one is tight in the fourth quarter.