Blog: Duke defeats No. 23 Miami 48-30, improves to 8-2 on the year
Posted November 16, 2013
Durham, N.C. — FINAL: Duke 48, Miami 30: Brandon Connette ran for four touchdowns and threw for another Saturday as the Duke Blue Devils defeated No. 23 Miami at Wallace Wade Stadium, 48-30. With the win, Duke improves to 8-2 on the year and controls their destiny to win the ACC Coastal Division.
6:50 4th; Duke 45, Miami 30: Duke extended their lead to 45-30 with under seven minutes to play as Shaquille Powell busted a TD run up the middle for 33 yards.
11:37 4th; Duke 38, Miami 30: Brandon Connette found the endzone on his fourth rushing TD and fifth overall TD of the game as Duke is up 38-30 early in the fourth quarter.
Connette became Duke's all-time leader in rushing touchdowns with 29 on the score.
2:47 3rd; Duke 31, Miami 30: Ross Martin had just enough to clear the cross bar on a 48-yard field goal and Duke is back in front of Miami late in the third quarter, 31-30.
5:40 3rd; Miami 30, Duke 28: Miami went on their fourth 10-play scoring drive of the game, this one resulted in a FG and the Canes have regained the lead midway through the 3rd quarter.
11:12 3rd; Duke 28, Miami 27: Miami responded in just three plays as Stephen Morris found Herb Waters who rolled out for a 50-yard score and it is once again a one-point game early in the second half.
11:50 3rd: Duke 28, Miami 20: Brandon Connette capped the first drive of the 2nd half with his 3rd rush TD of the game and Duke is up 28-20 on Miami.
HALF: Duke 21, Miami 20: Duke fell behind by two scores early but battled back to take a on-point lead at half and will receive to open the third quarter. Slideshow: Duke, Miami battle for ACC Coastal control
At the half, Miami has out-gained Duke 279-252 but a key interception by the Blue Devils led to a score midway through the second quarter.
2:01 2nd: Duke 21, Miami 20: On a drive where Anthony Boone and Brandon Connette split time, it was Connette who found the endzone for his second time and the Blue Devils have gained a 21-20 lead late in the 2nd quarter.
4:42 2nd: Miami 20, Duke 14: Miami threatened deep into Duke territory before a personal foul on quarterback Stephen Morris forced the Canes to settle for a FG and the game remains a 1-score difference.
9:02 2nd: Miami 17, Duke 14: After a Deondre Singleton interception set up Duke at midfield, Brandon Connette connected with Shaq Powell on a 22-yard TD pass on 3rd down and the Blue Devils are within a score.
End of 1: Miami 17, Duke 7: After one quarter, Miami and Duke have played a similar game offensively (127 yards to 122), although Miami has a punt return for a TD and leads the Blue Devils, 17-7.
2:01 1st: Miami 17, Duke 7: Miami went on a long drive, aided by a personal foul penalty, and Stephen Morris found Herb Waters on a corner roue to cap the TD, beating an overly aggressive Jeremy Cash.
6:22 1st: Miami 10, Duke 7: Duke went on a ground-heavy 10-play, 75-yard drive, converted a 3rd and short and found the endzone on a 2-yard Brandon Connette TD as the game is now 10-7 in favor of the Canes early on.
9:33 1st: Miami 10, Duke 3: After Duke went 3-and-out, Stacy Coley flipped the field on a 79-yard punt return and the Hurricanes are up 10-0 with two scores just 54 seconds apart.
10:27 1st: Miami 3, Duke 3: Miami had a big gainer on the game's opening drive on a double flea-flicker. but Duke's defense held the Canes to a 32-yard field goal and the game stands at 3-0 early on.
15:00 1st: Duke vs. Miami: Senior defensive backs Ross Cockrell and Garrett Patterson, each of whom did not play a defensive snap last week, are each listed as starters Saturday vs. Miami on Senior Day.
Other seniors in the starting lineup include WR Brandon Braxton, G Dave Harding, T Perry Simmons, DE Justin Foxx, DT Sydney Sarmiento and DE Kenny Anunike.
Miami will start with the ball moving left to rright wearing all whites. Duke will play in black tops and blue pants with blue helmets.
Looking to keep their hopes alive in the ACC's Coastal Division, the Duke Blue Devils (7-2, 3-2) play host to the No. 24 Miami Hurricanes (7-2, 3-2) on Saturday (3:30 p.m., 620 The Buzz AM) at Wallace Wade Stadium.
Miami appeared to be one of the nation's best teams early in the season, as it opened up with seven straight victories, rising all the way to No. 7 in the AP poll. Since that hot start, however, the Hurricanes have fallen flat with back-to-back losses to Florida State and Virginia Tech.
On the other hand, Duke continues to be one of the biggest surprises in the nation. After two straight losses in mid-September, the Blue Devils have responded with five victories in a row to climb to 7-2, most recently taking down intrastate rival N.C. State at home last Saturday, 38-20.
After 18 consecutive losing seasons, they are guaranteed a winning record this year and appear destined to make consecutive bowl games for the first time in program history.
"I think the most important part of it is to remember who you are and why you're better," Duke coach David Cutcliffe said of the team's recent rise. "We're not better because we strut or because we're so physically gifted that we're going to dominate anyone. We are who we are because of the process – a process we believe deeply in."
This matchup will act as an elimination game of sorts, as both teams sit at 3-2 in the ACC Coastal Division. Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech also have two conference losses. Miami has a 9-1 advantage over Duke in the all-time series, and it has never lost in Durham.
Duke's offense has been an efficient one this season, generating 33.4 points and 409.3 yards per game.
Anthony Boone is the team's starting quarterback, although after a three-interception performance last week, he now has nine picks to go with just five touchdown passes. Brandon Connette, who started three games earlier in the season when Boone was out with injury, still figures in the mix and has played better overall, with 12 passing touchdowns, eight rushing scores and six interceptions.
Jamison Crowder in one of the nation's best receivers with 67 receptions, 903 yards and three scores, but he has also returned two punts for touchdowns and has a rushing score to prove what a dynamic playmaker he can be.
Speaking of which, DeVon Edwards was a difference-maker in the recent win over NC State. He had two interception returns for a touchdown and a 100-yard kickoff return for a score, marking the first time in the last 10 FBS seasons that a player scored three non-offensive touchdowns in a game. Edwards, who also has 31 tackles this season, has helped a defense that allows just 22.2 points per game.
There's no shortage of defensive standouts for the Blue Devils. David Helton has 90 tackles, Jeremy Cash has 78 stops to go with four interceptions and two fumble recoveries, and Kenny Anunike anchors the defensive line with 11.0 TFL and 4.0 sacks.
Despite gaining just 12 first downs in a 24-point effort last week, Miami still has one of the ACC's best offenses, ranking third in both scoring (35.0 ppg) and yardage (446.3 ypg).
Stephen Morris has had an up-and-down senior season, completing 58.9 percent of his passes for 1,979 yards with 14 touchdowns and a career-high 10 interceptions. He had a strong showing in the loss to Virginia Tech (16-of-29, 324 yards, two TDs) and doesn't seem overly concerned with his team's prospects moving forward.
"I'm not worried," Morris said. "This is a resilient team. We've been through a lot. You win some and you lose some, unfortunately, but that's the game of football. I was telling the team that we have a lot to do and a lot to still work for."
The Hurricanes suffered a huge blow when they lost star tailback Duke Johnson (920 yards, six TDs) for the season with an ankle injury. Dallas Crawford has been productive as a goal-line back with 10 touchdowns, but in a featured role last week he gained just 37 yards on 10 rushes.
Allen Hurns is a big-play threat at wide receiver, and after a 142-yard performance versus Virginia Tech, he now has 732 yards and five scores on just 37 receptions.
Defensively, Miami has been stout for the most part, allowing just 23.0 points per game, but against a lackluster Hokies offense a week ago the unit allowed 549 yards.
Denzel Perryman has made a team-high 78 tackles, while Shayon Green has 10.5 TFL, and Ladarius Gunter, Rayshawn Jenkins and Tracy Howard all have multiple interceptions.