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Yeah? But how good is the Miami Hurricanes’ defense?

in Sports/Top Headlines by

By now, we know all about the FSU defense. You can pick an adjective if you want.

Soft. Underperforming. Confused. Undisciplined.

Through half of a season, FSU’s defense has been abysmal. FSU is 94th in the nation, sandwiched between FIU and USF. Hardly the place you would look for top-shelf recruits. The Seminoles have given up six plays of more 40 yards.

But here’s a question.

How good, really, is the University of Miami defense?

Oh, on paper, the Hurricanes are good. They’re seventh in the country in total defense, and they’re third in passing yards allowed. They’re second in scoring defense to Ohio State. They’re allowing more than two yards less per play than a year ago and less than 17 points fewer.

But let’s be honest. UM hasn’t really faced the Murderer’s Row of offenses with FAMU, FAU, Appalachian State and Georgia Tech. Against FSU, they’ll face the best quarterback (Deondre Francois) they’ve faced. They’ll face the best running back (Dalvin Cook). They’ll face the best receivers, etc.

Think about it. So far, Miami has played FAMU, which is ranked 111th in the lower FCS in offense. FAU is 118th in the FBS. Appalachian State is 91st. Georgia Tech is tied for 113th.

Remember, Miami starts three freshman linebackers in Shaq Quarterman, Mike Pinckney and  Zack McCloud. Will they be tested?

“They don’t know that they don’t know,” Miami coach Mark Richt told ESPN. “They’re good dudes. They’re really good. But they don’t know. They haven’t really been hit in the mouth real hard yet. It’s coming. We’ll see how they react, how tough they are.”

FSU is going for its seventh straight win in the series.

Gary Shelton is one of the most recognized and honored sportswriters in the history of the state. He has won the APSE's national columnist of the year twice and finished in the top 10 eight times. He was named the Florida Sportswriter of the Year six times. Gary joined SaintPetersBlog in the spring, helping to bring a sports presence to the website. Over his time in sports writing, Gary has covered 29 Super Bowls, 10 Olympics, Final Fours, Masters, Wimbledons and college national championships. He was there when the Bucs won a Super Bowl, when the Lightning won a Stanley Cup and when the Rays went to a World Series. He has seen Florida, FSU and Miami all win national championships, and he covered Bear Bryant, Bobby Bowden and Don Shula along the way. He and his wife Janet have four children: Eric, Kevin, K.C. and Tori. To contact, visit garysheltonsports@gmail.com.

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