Canes vs. Bulls
Looking for their first nine-win season since 2005, the 19th-ranked Hurricanes close out their schedule Saturday at Raymond James Stadium, where they'll face a Bulls team led by dynamic redshirt freshman quarterback B.J. Daniels.
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"It's an in-state game,"
Sophomore quarterback Jacory Harris won't let the Hurricanes forget what is at stake in their final two games - a shot at the program's first 10-win season since 2003 and its first bowl victory since 2006.
A week after a 33-24 loss at
"We were coming out and Duke was just cheering, singing songs, basically like they've got this game won," said Harris, who threw for 300-plus yards in three of his last four games. "Right there, that kind of lit a flame inside my soul. I was like, 'I can't let this happen.'''
Harris, the ACC offensive player of the week, has 3,003 passing yards this season - the first
Sophomore wide receiver Leonard Hankerson has been a major beneficiary of Harris' breakout sophomore season. Hankerson, who had career highs with eight receptions and 143 yards Saturday, leads the team with 42 catches and 752 yards. He is tied with tight end Jimmy Graham with five receiving TDs.
Graham had a season-high 73 receiving yards against the Blue Devils. Four of his five catches came on third down as
"Third down was unbelievable,''
So was senior linebacker Darryl Sharpton, who recorded a career-high 12 tackles and recorded his first career interception, bringing it back 73 yards for a touchdown in the fourth quarter.
Led by Sharpton, the ACC defensive lineman of the week, Miami's rush defense allowed 88.2 yards in the last six games after giving up an average of 149.6 on the ground in its first five contests.
The Hurricanes, who gave up two rushing TDs in the last six weeks, will look to shut down Daniels. He became the first player in Big East history to throw for 300 yards and rush for 100 in the same game as South Florida (7-3) defeated
Daniels completed 20 of 34 for 304 yards and carried 22 times for 141 yards to earn Big East offensive player of the week honors.
His 445 yards were 12 shy of the conference record.
"B.J. Daniels played with courage. He played with fight. He played with confidence. But he missed a lot of different plays," said Bulls coach Jim Leavitt, whose team is looking to win at least eight games for the fourth straight season.
Junior A.J. Love caught four passes for a career-high 121 yards while senior Jessie Hester made five catches for 43 yards. Hester became the fifth player in program history with 100 receptions.
Posted: 11/24/09 7:55PM ET