USA TODAY Sports’ George Schroeder, Paul Myerberg and FOX Sports host Joel Klatt preview the three biggest games this weekend.
USA TODAY Sports
No. 2 Miami (Fla.) was shocked by Pittsburgh 24-14, dealing the Hurricanes a major blow to their College Football Playoff hopes.
The Miami offense struggled all game on the road with just one touchdown drive on its first 13 possessions. Pittsburgh scored 21 consecutive points after the Hurricanes took a 7-3 lead in the second quarter.
Freshman quarterback Kenny Pickett, making his first start ran for two touchdowns and threw for another for the Panthers, who shocked Clemson last year on the road. The Tigers then went on to win the national championship.
“You don’t think your first start is going to come against the No. 2 team in the country and you upset them at home. It’s an unbelievable feeling and I’m real happy we got it done for the seniors,” Pickett said.
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The Hurricanes will have to hope history repeats itself. They face face Clemson next week in the ACC championship game next Saturday. With the loss to the Panthers, they now likely saw any chance of making the field without beating the Tigers in Charlotte.
“I still think there’s an awful lot to play for,” Miami coach Mark Richt said. “We have no idea what’s going to happen in the big picture, how many teams lost a game on a Friday and came back and got in the top four? How many teams lost one game and won a conference championship and got right back in it? Who knows? So we don’t know.”
Quarterback Malik Rosier, who had led the team to wins in each of its first 10 games this season, was pulled in the fourth quarter after missing several open receivers. He eventually returned in the following series, but Miami was down 17.
Rosier found Braxton Berrios on a 39-yard touchdown pass with just over two minutes remaining to make it 24-14. The Hurricanes then recovered an onside kick to give them one last chance, but the Panthers forced a fumble to seal the game.
Rosier finished 15-of-34 for 187 yards and two touchdowns.
“There’s multiple times where we play lackadaisical in the first half and in the second half we come out and explode and it just didn’t happen,” Rosier said. “That’s something I’ve got to fix. I’ve got to motivate those guys in the first half so the second half doesn’t have to be some type of miracle second half.”
Miami, which entered the game with the longest active win streak in the country at 15 games, was held to a season-low 229 yards.
IMAGES FROM WEEK 13 IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL