#16 Miami Hosts North Carolina in Primetime to Open ACC Play: Game Preview

Written by Darrell Wilkinson

The Miami Hurricanes look to start 1-0 in the ACC as they host the North Carolina Tar Heels under the lights of Hard Rock Stadium. The ‘Canes have enjoyed a three game winning streak heading into the game while the Tar Heels are fresh off a 38-35 win against Pitt that represents their only victory of the season so far.


Both teams share similar issues in terms of preparation as both the ‘Canes and Heels have question marks around their starting quarterbacks. So both teams may have an issue figuring out who to start for their team and who they need to prepare for on the other side. Malik Rosier was pulled in the third series in favor of redshirt freshman N’Kosi Perry in Miami’s 31 to 17 win over FIU. North Carolina on the other hand confirmed Nathan Elliot will continue to start with question marks surrounding his future as Chazz Surratt returns from suspension.


Hurricanes Head Coach Mark Richt confirmed that Perry, Rosier and Cade Weldon all took first team reps this week but you would have to think after Perry’s 17 for 25 for 224 yards and three touchdowns that put away FIU he would be the favorite going in. Offensive Coordinator Thomas Brown thought that Perry had a good showing his first time out.


I think he played well. He had, I would say, one ill-advised throw. He kind of underestimated his arm a little bit on the scramble to try and take a shot. But other than that, I thought he was very accurate. I thought he ran the offense very well. I think he showed some escape ability, at times, when the pocket kind of broke down and holes opened up. I thought it was a pretty good day for him, for the most part.


On the other hand Richt is prepared for whichever quarterback he will see from UNC Thursday.


It does. Every quarterback has a little different skill set.” Said Coach Richt about the difficulties preparing for two quarterbacks presents. “If you have a guy [who is] brand new, it’s tougher. We have a little bit of tape of those two, so I think it’ll help us.”


It’s only the first game of ACC conference play but Miami needs this win still to get back on track. Three straight victories against Savannah State, Toledo, and FIU haven’t given us answers to the many questions that were asked about this team after the LSU loss. A convincing win against a North Carolina team with a lot of talent on it would answer some of those questions and convincing quarterback play would answer even more.


Prediction: Miami 31 – North Carolina 21


I would be more surprised if N’Kosi Perry didn’t start than if he actually does. The way the team rallied around his leadership was one thing but it was the crisp almost mistake free passing that really impresses. In the middle of the second quarter against FIU, Perry saw tight end Brevin Jordan running to the right sideline in the endzone and Perry slung a pass that went incomplete through Jordan’s hands. That throw was the perfect example of throwing the ball to an area where only your receiver has a chance of catching it, and that was under pressure. Impressive.


North Carolina has played some tough opponents but still struggled at times in the Pitt game and it’s hard to have a lot of confidence in this Tar Heels team until they show up consistently. I have Miami taking this one


Be sure to tune in Thursday night as #16 Miami takes on North Carolina at Hard Rock Stadium at 8:00PM/EST and can be seen LIVE on ESPN.


  • Darrell Wilkinson TheSkyBoat.com
  • Twitter: @TheSkyBoat
  • @DarrellW_Sports
  • @CanesFB_SkyBoat


Share This Story:

Related Content