Russell Athletic Bowl Preview

West Virginia Mountaineers vs Miami Hurricanes

An old Big East rivalry will resume on December 28 with West Virginia and Miami meeting in Orlando for the Russell Athletic Bowl (Enter Contest). These two teams have not played since 2003. The Mountaineers have lost six in a row in their all-time series against the Hurricanes.

West Virginia heavily recruits the state of Florida, so an appearance in this game against Miami is a good showcase for coach Dana Holgorsen’s program. The Mountaineers are coming off their best win total (10) since joining the Big 12. Holgorsen was inked to a long-term contract following the regular season finale against Baylor. Quarterback Skyler Howard (26 TDs) took a step forward in his development, but the Mountaineers also have a solid collection of running backs and a standout offensive line.

Mark Richt’s return to his alma mater was a much-needed stabilizing force for Miami and better days are ahead for this program. Quarterback Brad Kaaya and running back Mark Walton will test a West Virginia defense that limits opponents to 5.6 yards per play. Keep an eye on the turnover battle. In two losses this year, the Mountaineers were minus-six in margin. Miami was plus-eight for the season and finished the year with positive or even turnover margins in five straight games.

ABOUT WEST VIRGINIA (10-2, 7-2 Big 12)

The Mountaineers rank No. 12 in FBS in total offense (506.9 yards per game) with a balanced attack behind Howard (3,194 yards passing, 60.8 percent, 26 touchdown passes). They also have a backfield that had four different players rush for more than 100 yards in a game. Justin Crawford leads the group with 1,168 yards, 7.4 yards per carry and four TDs. Howard, who is also a running threat, has a trio of dangerous receivers in Daikiel Shorts Jr. (58 receptions, 833 yards), Ka’Raun White (48, 583) and game-breaking Shelton Gibson (40, 927, 23.2 yards per reception). All-American senior cornerback Rasul Douglas, who had eight of the team’s 14 interceptions, is the leader of a unit that ranked No. 3 in total defense (but only No. 79 in FBS) in the offensive-minded Big 12 (431.2 yards per game).

ABOUT MIAMI (8-4, 5-3 ACC)

Kaaya (3,250 yards, 61.2 percent, 23 touchdowns) played his best at the end of the season. He benefited from improved protection from his line, the emergence of explosive freshman wide receiver Ahmmon Richards (46 receptions, 866 yards, 18.8 yards per reception) and the improved play of tight end David Njoku (38, 654, 17.2), who caught seven TD passes. The offensive line’s re-emergence after being dominated during the losing streak also helped. Walton (1,065 yards, 5.5 yards per carry, 14 TDs) and Joe Yearby (592, 6.0) provided balance in the final four wins. With four freshmen in their front seven, Miami’s defense held nine foes to 21 points or fewer.

Posted in CFB

Miami Hurricanes versus Cincinnati Bearcats College Football Fantasy Preview

College Football Fantasy Draft News 9-29-2015

College football action for Thursday night features the Cincinnati Bearcats at home to face the Miami Hurricanes. College football fantasy draft GM’s can tune to ESPN on October 1st at 7:30PM Eastern Time to track the results of their roster picks.

Miami has a record of 3-0 on the year and will be coming off a bye week. They were in a high scoring game in week three as they defeated the Nebraska Cornhuskers 36-33 in overtime. The Hurricanes are putting up 41 points per game and that is good for 16th best in college football. The other victories for Miami came against Bethune Cookman at home and a road win at Florida Atlantic. This road game at Cincinnati precedes a road contest the following week at Florida St.

Cincinnati is a 2-2 team this year. Their losses came against Temple at home and last week they lose 53-46 at Memphis. In that loss the Bearcats rolled up 752 yards of offense. Turnovers were a factor in the loss as Cincinnati had a -2 margin in defeat. The teams combined for 1000 yards of passing offense so the Hurricanes could be game planning to exploit them.

Cincinnati Bearcats QB:

Hayden Moore:

With the injury to Gunner Kiel it looks as if Moore will get the start in this one. The freshman signal caller has hit on 56% of his throws for 782 yards with five touchdowns and four picks. In the Memphis game last week Moore hit 31 of 53 passes for 557 yards with four touchdowns and two picks.

Cincinnati Bearcats RB:

Tom Green:

The Bearcats have distributed carries to many running backs on the season. Green leads the club in carries with 61 on the year for 293 yards with three touchdowns. He is rushing for 4.8 yards a carry.

Hosey Williams:

The senior running back has rushed for 271 yards on the year with a touchdown and 4.8 yards a carry average.

Cincinnati Bearcats WR:

Chris Moore

Moore leads the Bearcats with 15 catches for 315 yards with two touchdowns. He is averaging 21 yards per catch. In the game against Memphis Chris Moore caught five balls for 153 yards and a touchdown.

Max Morrison

The senior wide receiver has grabbed 19 passes for 290 yards and two touchdowns. Morrison had a monster game at Memphis with nine catches for 162 yards with two touchdowns. He is averaging 15.3 yards per reception on the campaign.

Miami Hurricanes QB:

Brad Kaaya

The sophomore quarterback for the Hurricanes has completed 61% of his throws for 839 yards with five touchdowns and a pick. Kaaya threw for 379 yards in the win against Nebraska and had two touchdowns and a pick. Fantasy football draft managers won’t earn many points from Kaaya on the ground because he has not run much at all.

Miami Hurricanes RB:

Joseph Yearby

The Hurricanes sophomore back has 41 carries for 311 yards with three touchdowns. In the game against Nebraska Yearby had 125 yards rushing with a touchdown and 7.4 yards a carry average.

Mark Walton

Walton is just a freshman and has run 34 times for 150 yards and four touchdowns. He ran for just 2.3 yards a carry in the win against Nebraska on ten carries.

Miami Hurricanes WR:

Rashawn Scott

Scott leads the Hurricanes with 18 catches for 273 yards with a touchdown. The senior wide receiver came up big against Nebraska with nine catches for 151 yards which averaged out to 16.8 yards per catch.

Herb Waters

This is another senior wide out for the Hurricanes. He has caught 11 balls for 194 yards for 17.6 yards per catch average.

Posted in CFB