The Miami Hurricanes might be off to their best season start since they joined the ACC. They are 4-1 and 3-0 in conference play, but there is one massive deficiency for the Hurricanes and that is their defense. They are awful on the defensive side of the ball. The unit is ranked 100th out of 119 teams in scoring defense, giving up an average of 33.4 points per game, leaving their offense to pick up the pieces and win shootout games.
The early season struggles of Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech have made the Hurricanes the favorites to win the Coastal Division, but can they do it with this defense? Is it even possible to turn their defense around this season?
Every defensive group has struggled this season, but the secondary has been the unit opposing offenses have chosen to pick on. NC State quarterback Mike Glennon threw for 440 yards and four touchdowns last week against the secondary, Kansas State QB Collin Klein threw for 210 yards and a touchdown in just 11 attempts and Boston College QB Chase Rettig threw for 441 yards and two touchdowns against the U.
After five games it is obvious that this isn’t a mirage. The entire defense is bad, but the secondary is the weakest link on an already weak unit. This defense doesn’t appear to be able to stop any body, which is a huge problem for the Hurricanes. There are some very good defenses in the ACC that have the ability to shut down Miami’s offense, and if that happens then the Hurricanes will be in for a rough outing.
That is the reason that I am tentative about naming the Hurricanes as the favorites to win the Coastal over the likes of say Virginia Tech. Miami’s defensive woes are a real problem and if the old adage “defense wins championships” is true then the Hurricanes can’t win with this defense.
Miami’s defense will get a little better as the season goes on, they have too much talent not to, but if they don’t pull a total 180 then they will have a lot of problems with the better teams in the ACC. The offense can’t do it all, but right now that appears to be the Hurricanes’ only chance. If the defense continues to play like this then I just don’t see any way that Miami can continue its winning ways, at some point the luck involved will run out.