Written by Darrell Wilkinson
The Miami Hurricanes broke the hearts of hopeful Toledo fans everywhere with a 49 to 24 victory despite a valiant effort from the Rockets who were only down 7 with 7:39 to go in the third quarter. Hurricanes quarterback Malik Rosier led the way to victory behind a five-touchdown performance that included two in the air and three on the ground.
The ‘Canes began the game as the aggressors with the defensive front playing well and Miami’s offense put it’s first touchdown on the board on a 12 play 76 yard drive that finished with a Rosier 5 yard rush that set the tone for the day. That tone was that the Hurricanes we’re coming downhill at Toledo on offense today and were going to show a commitment to the run game. The Hurricanes finished with 268 yards rushing averaging 5.1 yards per rush with DeeJay Dallas’ 110 yards on 17 carries leading the way.
Into the second quarter up 7-0 Miami needed a spark and got one in the form of Jeff Thomas as on consecutive plays the sophomore wide out hauled in a big first down to keep the drive alive then immediately after was found by Malik Rosier for a 38 yard touchdown where Thomas burned his would be defenders. Big Play Jeff Thomas has continues to light it up as he had another great afternoon with 5 grabs for 105 yards.
Just before the end of the half Toledo sprung into life. Rockets Quarterback Mitchell Guadagni led his team on an 8 play 65 yard drive that was finished off with a Diontae Johnson touchdown catch and momentum on the side of Toledo who was down 21-7 at this time. Coming out of the half Guadagni continued to dice up Miami’s secondary that was missing the injured Jaquan Johnson. Toledo again drove down on a 7 play 81 yard drive that was finished off with an Art Thompkins 5 yard touchdown to make it 21-14.
The Hurricanes responded behind DeeJay Dallas who restored the 14 point lead before again, Rocket’s wide receiver Diontae Johnson broke free and reeled off a 40 yard score. Johnson looks like a player that we could see on Sunday’s and had a good day with 119 yards on 6 catches with his previously mentioned touchdowns.
Unfortunately for Toledo that was as close as they would get as Miami turned their game up to another level to put the game away. Malik Rosier found Lawrence Cager on a fade as the third quarter rolled down then scrambled on his own for a 37 yard rushing touchdown that put the game to bed before Trayone Gray nailed the coffin shut with a goal line touchdown.
Miami’s offense showed that they could run the ball effectively when they commit to it, and Rosier never really had to go far out of his comfort zone in this victory. The ‘Canes defensive front 7 played well for the majority of the games but you have to ask questions about Miami’s secondary as they seemed to struggle at times especially once Jaquan Johnson limped off the field with an injury for the rest of the game.
Miami looks to continue their momentum next Saturday 9/22 as the ‘Canes take on FIU at Hard Rock Stadium 3:30PM/EST
- Darrell Wilkinson TheSkyBoat.com
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