Miami Football: 3 takeaways from Hurricanes win over Bethune-Cookman

(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images) /

No. 2 – The Hurricanes’ defense has some work to do to be elite

Miami’s defense entered the year with a lot of hype, and rightfully so. The Hurricanes improved considerably in 2016. With a solid group of returning players they look to take the next step. In the season opener the defense had a very uneven day, looking sloppy at times with numerous breakdowns.

Bethune-Cookman was able to move the ball early, even taking a brief 3-0 lead. Miami allowed several long drives and seemed at times to be a step slow. The Wildcats were able to stay on the field converting 8-of-17 third downs for the game.

Time of possession is often a misleading stat but Bethune-Cookman did have the ball for almost ten minutes more than the Hurricanes. Miami allowed over nine yards per completion and four yards per carry against an inferior opponent. If this continues Miami’s defense will be in trouble.

Perhaps it was just the rust of being in the opening game combined with taking their opponent for granted that led to this lackluster effort by the Hurricanes defense. Defensive Coordinator Manny Diaz will surely address the missed tackles and assignments, along with the penalties. Miami can get away with this type of performance against an FCS opponent, but it certainly can’t against better competition.

They did intercept one pass and recovered one fumble. However, the defense left several more turnovers on the field. Malek Young, who had the interception, showed that the defense still has a lot of confidence and swag.

Expect the Hurricanes coaching staff to really light a fire under the defense after this effort. Miami should have a top 25 defense before all is said and done if they clean up their act.