Today when the University of Miami football team takes the field against Georgia Tech at Bobby Dodd Stadium in Atlanta it is very possible that the Yellow Jacket fans may notice a certain smell coming from the UM players.
No, not the pleasant, confident smell of teen spirit but the strong, repulsive smell of fear. If that is indeed the case then it could be a long day for your Miami Hurricanes against their ACC Coastal Division rival and very possibly for the rest of the 2012 college football season.
But I have reason to believe that by the end of the game the smell coming from the UM football team will not be of fear but much more like that of Napalm in the morning. The smell that Miami fans who traveled all the way up to Atlanta will be pleasantly surprised with at the end of the game will be the the sweet smell of victory for the Hurricanes over the Yellow Jackets.
Here are our keys to the game and how and why we believe that Miami will shock the world:
UM must take an early lead: Miami has trailed their opponents early in each of its three games so far this season. UM staked Boston College and Kansas State to 14 point cushions in games one and two and then gave a 7 point edge to BCC last week. That cannot happen against GT this week or it may be good night Gertrude for the 'Canes. The Yellow Jackets' run oriented, triple option offense is built to play with the lead and not as a come from behind team. If Miami can jump out to an early lead and keep scoring pace with GT throughout the game the Jackets may be forced into a track meet and into doing what they do not want to do: throw the ball.
UM must diversify their offense and control the ball and the clock: Keeping the potent and powerful Tech offense off of the field may be the only way to keep them from scoring against Miami's young, inexperienced (and hopefully improving) defense. If Miami is able to run the ball consistently, convert on third down, sustain long scoring drives and control the time of possession (something they have not been able to do in 2012) they will give themselves a good chance to win the game. If Miami fails to do so it may be Katy bar the door as UM's undersized and out-manned defensive line is forced to go up against GT's solid and experienced offensive front seven. A successful UM running game will set up the play action pass for QB Stephen Morris and his fleet footed wide receivers who may have a shot at some big plays against the suddenly aggressive, Al Groh coached Yellow Jacket defense.
UM must win Special Teams: This often overlooked part of the game usually accounts for about one third of all plays run during an average football game. For Miami to have any chance of winning on Saturday they will have to take advantage of their superior special teams speed and skill and score on a return or block or both. Duke Johnson and Phillip Dorsett have both shown the ability to break big returns on kickoffs and punts and will likely have to come up big for the 'Canes once again this week. Miami's kick and punt coverage teams have been stellar so far this season and may need a punt block or a turnover for Miami to leave Atlanta with a win.
UM must resort to trickeration: We have been told by several very "unreliable sources" that Miami will break out every trick play they have in the playbook this week against Georgia Tech. Of course that is IF they actually have any. Our sources could not confirm or deny if these plays even exist and refused to talk to us on camera. Of course we have never met these sources, would not know what they look like if we did, and someone recently stole our only camera so that was not really going to be a problem anyway. And by the way, where the heck is former Miami Dolphins head coach Tony Sporano when you really need him anyway? (wink, wink)
The bottom line is supposedly people who know things, people like college football guru Phil Steele, the Las Vegas odds-makers and even The Pope have no reason to believe that the Miami Hurricanes will beat Georgia Tech this Saturday in Atlanta. But I think they are all wrong.
I think that this Miami Hurricane team has nothing to fear but fear itself. And if I am right, you will never hear the end of it!
Canespace Prediction: UM 38, GT 34