Saturday, February 17, 2018
Sports

Kaaya steps up for UM

MIAMI — Brad Kaaya picked on Pittsburgh's secondary with his arm and even caused problems with his legs.

Kaaya passed for 356 yards and four touchdowns and ran for a score as Miami snapped a four-game losing streak by beating Pittsburgh 51-28 Saturday.

"This is like the home stretch," Kaaya said. "This should provide us with some good momentum going forward, to stop the bleeding."

Never accused of being overly mobile, Kaaya sent the Miami sideline into celebration with a 12-yard run, the longest of his career. But most important to Miami were these Kaaya numbers: 13 straight completions to start the game, a career-high 32 completions in 47 attempts, no interceptions and only one sack by a Pittsburgh defensive front that came in averaging 31/2.

"So many really good things happened, I don't really know where to start," UM coach Mark Richt said. "The bottom line is we got a great victory in front of our home crowd, and I'm very thankful."

Stacy Coley and David Njoku caught two touchdowns each and Ahmmon Richards finished with 144 yards receiving for Miami. Mark Walton ran for 125 yards, the last 55 coming on a touchdown with 2:12 left for the Hurricanes, who avoided becoming the first Miami team to lose five straight in a season since 1977.

"It definitely gets us back on track," defensive back Corn Elder said.

Nathan Peterman threw for 274 yards and two touchdowns and Quadree Henderson had a 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown for the Panthers.

NO. 3 CLEMSON 54, SYRACUSE 0: Deshaun Watson passed for two touchdowns and ran for a third for the host Tigers before leaving with a bruised shoulder.

Clemson coach Dabo Swinney said Watson's injury was not serious, and the team announced after halftime its junior Heisman Trophy contender could return if needed. With the Tigers up 30-0 at halftime, it was hardly necessary, and Watson spent the final two quarters high-fiving teammates and chatting up coaches while Clemson improved to 9-0 for a second straight season.

The Tigers can clinch the Atlantic Division next week against Pitt.

NO. 5 LOUISVILLE 52, BC 7: Forearm cramps and finger numbness threatened to do what the Eagles defense couldn't: derail Lamar Jackson's Heisman Trophy run.

The Cardinals quarterback left late in the second quarter after opening a five-touchdown lead but returned in the third to run for another two touchdowns for visiting Louisville.

"I think he should be good," coach Bobby Petrino said after the Heisman favorite accounted for seven touchdowns — three running, four throwing — to give him 45 for the season. "He looked pretty good in the second half."

NO. 18 UNC 48, GA. TECH 20: Elijah Hood ran for 168 yards and three touchdowns for the host Tar Heels, who piled up 636 total yards, had a season-high 283 on the ground and scored the game's final 21.

Hood broke into the secondary untouched on several carries between the tackles. He got some rest and recovery during North Carolina's open date, shaking off the effects of some nagging injuries that hampered his effectiveness the first half of the season.

"I'm just happy to be back and be able to move the way that I like to and not be worried about it," he said. "I'm having a lot more fun with it."

NO. 23 VA. TECH 24, DUKE 21: Adonis Alexander returned a blocked field goal 75 yards for a touchdown, and the visiting Hokies remained in control of the Coastal Division race. Travon McMillian ran 14 yards for a TD and Jerod Evans passed for 192 yards and scored on a 7-yard run, carrying three Blue Devils defenders along for the ride.

WAKE 27, UVA 20: Quarterback John Wolford tied a career high with 94 rushing yards, including a 64-yard touchdown, and the host Demon Deacons became bowl eligible for the first time since 2011 with their third win in a row over the Cavaliers.

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