October 7, 2016 - by
First and 10: No. 21 FSU at No. 10 Miami

MIAMI – After a few days of uncertainty, Hurricane Matthew has moved away from Florida, which means that the Florida State football team is indeed headed south for its annual showdown with the Miami Hurricanes. Here’s a look at the names, numbers and notes you need to know before the Seminoles meet Miami.

No. 21 Florida State (3-2, 0-2 ACC) at No. 10 Miami (4-0, 1-0 ACC)


When/Where: Saturday, 8 p.m./Hard Rock Stadium (78,363) in Miami Gardens, Fla.
TV/Radio: ESPN/Seminole IMG Radio Network; FSU Broadcast Live Stream

Florida State injury report:
QB      Sean Maguire (foot) 

Out For Game
RB      Johnathan Vickers (concussion)
DT      Darvin Taylor II(shoulder)

Out Indefinitely
DE      Keith Bryant (foot)
DB      Derwin James (knee)

Out For Season
WR     George Campbell (core muscle)

 Miami Hurricanes

Coach: Mark Richt (4-0 in first season at Miami, 149-51 overall)

Last game: The Hurricanes scored two defensive touchdowns to dispatch Georgia Tech, 35-21, in Atlanta. QB Brad Kaaya had an efficient day, completing 13 of 19 passes for 65 yards and a touchdown.

Last game vs. Florida State: Dalvin Cook ran for 222 yards and three touchdowns, including the game-winning score with 6:44 to go, to beat Miami 29-24, on Oct. 10, 2015.

Miami vs. Florida State all-time: Miami leads the all-time series 31-29, but FSU has won six straight. Since UM joined the ACC in 2004, FSU is 9-4 against the Hurricanes. The Seminoles are 19-16 against Miami in Miami.

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 30, MIAMI 26

2015: No. 8 FLORIDA STATE 29, Miami 24

2016: No.  21 Florida State at No. 10 MIAMI, Saturday, 8 p.m.


  • After a heartbreaking, buzzer-beating loss to North Carolina last week, the Seminoles have an opportunity to wash the bad taste out of their mouths with a win over Miami. The Hurricanes are 4-0 in coach Mark Richt’s first season, but those wins have come against Florida A&M, Florida Atlantic, Appalachian State and Georgia Tech. FSU, by contrast, has started the season with a stretch that included No. 14 Ole Miss, No. 7 Louisville and No. 17 North Carolina.
  • Speaking of Richt, this is his first meeting with the Seminoles as Miami’s head coach and first overall since FSU met Richt’s Georgia Bulldogs in the 2003 Sugar Bowl. Richt, of course, was a key part of FSU’s “dynasty era,” serving as a graduate assistant from 1985-88 and then as offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach from 1990-2000. Incidentally, Saturday’s game will be played at Hard Rock Stadium, formerly known as Joe Robbie Stadium, which was the site of Richt’s last game with Florida State in the 2001 Orange Bowl.
  • FSU will once again look to defend its supremacy in the state of Florida. The Seminoles are 6-0 against Miami under coach Jimbo Fisher and 15-1 overall against in-state schools. An FSU victory would match the longest winning strike by either school in series history. Florida State is also riding five-game winning streak at Miami, having not lost to the Hurricanes on the road since 2004.
  • Quarterback Deondre Francois will get his first taste of the FSU-UM rivalry. He can be come the fifth consecutive Seminole starter to win his debut over the Hurricanes, and the ninth to do it since 1989. Christian Ponder (2008), Chris Weinke (2005) and Thad Busby (1996) all won their first starts against Miami on the road.

One offensive and defensive player from each team who could swing the game

Miami: Despite boasting one of the ACC’s top quarterback in Brad Kaaya, Miami’s offense is more centered around its running back tandem of Mark Walton and Joe Yearby. The two combine for an average of more than 190 yards per game and each is a capable receiver out of the backfield.

On defense, freshman end Joe Jackson has enjoyed a torrid start to his career, posting a team-high three sacks as well as four tackles for loss. The Hurricanes lead the nation with an average of 12 tackles for loss per game.

FSU: Dalvin Cook in recent weeks has reasserted himself as one of the top running backs in the nation. And, if history is any indication, he’ll have something special in store for the Hurricanes on Saturday. In two games against his hometown team, the former Miami Central star has accounted for 379 yards and five touchdowns. He enters this year’s game leading the nation in total yards from scrimmage (921).

Defensively, the Seminoles could use a big performance from senior cornerback Marquez White, who will likely see a heavy dose of UM’s top receiver, Stacy Coley. Coley averages more than 14 yards per catch.

Total offense: FSU: 508.8 YPG (17th nationally); UM: 474.3 YPG (36th)

Scoring offense:  FSU: 41.4 PPG (22nd); UM: 47.0 PPG (4th)

Passing offense: FSU: 268.4 YPG (38th); UM: 241.8 YPG (61st)

Rushing offense: FSU: 240.4 YPG (20th); UM: 232.5 (24th)

Total defense: FSU: 438.4 YPG (94th); UM: 253.3 YPG (7th)

Scoring defense: FSU: 35.4 PPG (106th); UM: 11.0 PPG (2nd)

Passing defense: FSU: 247.2 YPG (84th); UM: 137.8 YPG (3rd)

Rushing defense: FSU: 191.2 YPG (97th ); UNC: 115.5 YPG (26th)

Number of note, courtesy of Pro Football Focus: It’s no surprise, but Florida State’s offense this season has been using the run to set up the pass. Consider that quarterback Deondre Francois’ completion percentage jumps up by 18.9 points when throwing off of play-action. That’s the third-highest increase in the nation. UM’s Kaaya, meanwhile, actually sees his completion percentage drop by 8.9 points when throwing off of play-action.

“It’s just Miami. Just me thinking of Miami winning just irks my nerves.” – FSU RB Dalvin Cook


It feels different all week. You can just feel it with the coaches and the players. They just know what time it is. This is Miami week, man. It don’t get no bigger than this. This is one of the games you came to Florida State to play in.” – more from Cook

“I’ve been taking it one week a time and, next thing you know, it’s Miami.” – FSU QB Deondre Francois


“It kind of sticks with you. You try not to think about it, but every once in a while you catch yourself thinking about it.” – UM QB Brad Kaaya on Miami’s six-game losing streak to FSU, particularly the last two games in which he played.

“Mutual, mutual respect. We knew, and I say ‘we,’ when I was at Florida State as a coach, we knew Miami was the real deal, and I think Miami knew Florida State was, as well.

“Florida State at one time was dominating the ACC. Miami was dominating the Big East, and Florida was dominating the SEC as much as you could with Coach (Steve) Spurrier. So between those three teams, somebody was going to the national championship game, and everybody played each other, at least Miami played Florida State and Florida.

“So anyway, everybody was playing each other I think back at that time, and there was just some monumental wars that were determining not just — it wasn’t determining a conference championship, it was determining whether you were going to play in the BCS National Championship game, and it was something to behold.” – UM coach Mark Richt on his memories of the FSU-Miami rivalry


  • A few minor milestones are in play: An FSU victory would move the Seminoles just one win behind the Hurricanes for the lead in the all-time series. After 60 meetings, Miami leads 31-29 but FSU has won nine of the last 11. Richt, meanwhile, could win the 150th game of his career on Saturday.
  • The game will pit two of the most successful coaches in college football. Fisher’s .816 winning percentage is third among active coaches, while Richt’s. 745 mark ranks ninth.
  • Miami is the fourth ranked team the Seminoles will have faced this season. FSU faced three ranked teams all of last year (including its bowl game) and hasn’t faced more than five ranked teams in a season since 2010.
  • Miami defensive coordinator Manny Diaz served as a graduate assistant at Florida State from 1998-99.
  • As usual, there are some high school connections between the Hurricanes and Seminoles. Miami RB Joe Yearby shared a backfield with Dalvin Cook at Central High, where they were also teammates with FSU’s Fredrick Jones, Da’Vante Phillips and Calvin Brewton.
  • FSU’s roster lists eight players from Miami: WR Jesus Wilson (Christopher Columbus), RB Dalvin Cook (Miami Central), WR Da’Vante Phillips (Miami Central), LB Matthew Thomas (Booker T. Washington), DB Calvin Brewton (Miami Central), RB Amir Rasul (Coral Gables), DT Fredrick Jones (Miami Central) and LB Emmett Rice (Norland). And several more Seminoles hail from the surrounding area.
  • Nearly half of the games in this series (29 of 600 have been decided by eight points or fewer, including seven of the last 10 meetings.
  • Miami is one of two schools in the country to have not trailed at any point this season. Boise State is the other.

The last time Florida State was an underdog against Miami, Jimbo Fisher was in his first year as head coach and the Seminoles were looking to reestablish their place among college football’s elite. This was the first signature win of the Fisher era, as well as the first win in a current six-game streak over the Hurricanes. Hard to believe it’s been six years already.

Ryan S. Clark of Warchant.com takes a look at Mavin Saunders’ recent emergence.


Bob Ferrante of the Osceola caught up with Bobby Bowden and Dennis Erickson to reminisce on the 25th anniversary of the infamous “Wide Right” game in 1991.


In what’s become an annual tradition, Corey Clark of the Tallahassee Democrat looks back on what life was like in 2009, the last time Miami beat Florida State.


George Richards of the Miami Herald writes that this is the biggest week of Mark Richet’s tenure at UM.

Matt Porter of the Palm Beach Post talked to former FSU receiver Ron Dugans, who is now the receivers coach at Miami.

David Villavicencio of HurricaneSports.com offers the UM perspective on the storied rivalry.

Both teams are hungry for a win, albeit for different reasons. Florida State needs a victory to turn things around after two losses in the last three weeks. Miami needs one to prove to itself – and the nation – that it is ready reclaim its position in both the state and national hierarchy.

While the Hurricanes are off to a hot start in Richt’s first year, FSU ought to be the best team that UM has faced this year. The Seminoles, meanwhile, have been through a gauntlet of three ranked teams and some of the most talented quarterbacks in college football.

The important question, then, is how FSU has responded to that stretch. If the Seminoles prove to battle-tested and an improved team because of their experiences, then they could be in good position to handle a tough test from the Hurricanes.

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