Saturday, September 22, 2012
Miami stuns Georgia Tech in overtime
By Andrea Adelson
Look who's 2-0 in the Coastal Division.
Miami, the team that refused to quit, overcame a 17-point third-quarter deficit to beat Georgia Tech for the fourth year in a row, 42-36 in overtime. Mike James had an unbelievable game, scoring the winning touchdown from 25 yards out in the extra period -- his fourth score of the afternoon.
You cannot count out these Canes, who came in as the underdogs but have now won both of their ACC games on the road. Georgia Tech, meanwhile, dropped to 1-2 in ACC play.
It was a game of incredible swings. First, Miami jumped out to a 19-0 lead in the first quarter, behind a 65-yard touchdown throw from Stephen Morris to Phillip Dorsett to open the game, and a later a Mike James touchdown run. But Georgia Tech came storming back and scored 36 unanswered points to go up 36-19 with 10 minutes left in the third quarter.
The Jackets seemed in complete control.
But Miami dominated from there out, and Georgia Tech's defense was powerless to stop the Canes. First, Jake Wieclaw hit a 23-yard field goal to start closing the gap. Then James scored on a 15-yard touchdown run to make it 36-29. Miami nearly tied the game up on the next drive. James appeared to score but the whistles blew just before the ball was snapped because Georgia Tech called timeout.
The score came off the board, and Miami could do nothing. Wieclaw missed a chip shot field goal -- his first of the game -- and Georgia Tech got the ball back. But on fourth-and-1 from the Miami 48, Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson elected to punt instead of go for it -- even though he has one of the top rushing offenses in America AND his defense had proven it could not stop Miami.
That ended up being a costly decision. Miami took the ball 91 yards, and Morris tied up the game with a 10-yard touchdown pass to James.
Georgia Tech got the ball first in overtime, and absolutely stunningly -- Tevin Washington was stuffed on fourth-and-1 from the Miami 2. Georgia Tech had 287 yards rushing in the game, but could not come up with half an inch when it needed it. That was the story of the fourth quarter for Georgia Tech, really, as the Jackets were held scoreless for the final 20 minutes of regulation and then overtime.
Miami got the ball, and James scored with ease. Morris ended up going 31-of-52 for 436 yards with two touchdowns and one interception. Dorsett had nine catches for 184 yards and a touchdown, and Davon Johnson added seven catches for 107 yards.
Miami had 609 total yards, its most against anyone since gaining 628 against McNeese St. in 2000, and its most against an FBS opponent since gaining 689 yards against UCLA in 1998.
As much as Miami has been maligned for its defensive performances this season, the Canes deserve major credit for shutting Georgia Tech down when it absolutely had to.