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Miami Takes On McNeese State To Open 2000 Football Season

Miami Takes On McNeese State To Open 2000 Football Season

Aug. 28, 2000

Game #1 Notes
Miami vs. McNeese State
August 31, 2000
Orange Bowl Stadium
Miami, Florida

McNeese State

American Press (McNeese State local newspaper)

The Game: Miami takes on McNeese State for the first time in programhistory. Miami enters the 2000 season on a four-game winning streak after a9-4 season in which the Hurricanes defeated Georgia Tech (28-13) in theToyota Gator Bowl on Jan. 1. Miami begins the season ranked 5th by theAssociated Press and 6th in the ESPN/USA Today rankings. The No. 5 rankingby AP is UM’s highest to start the season since 1993’s No. 4 AP ranking.McNeese State is a member of the Southland Football League and is a NCAADivision I-AA member institution. The Cowboys posted a 6-5 record in 1999,placing second in the SLC with a 5-2 conference mark. McNeese State returns15 starters and 45 lettermen from last year’s squad. The UM-McNeese Stategame is Miami’s 75th season opener and marks the start of the Hurricanes’sixth season under head coach Butch Davis. Miami is 498-24-1 (.650)all-time in season openers and has won its last four opening games. TheHurricanes have won 12 of their last 14 season openers dating back to 1986.Miami has played 48 season-opening games at the Orange Bowl and theHurricanes hold a 34-13-1 (.713) record in those games. Miami owns afour-game winning streak in season openers at the Orange Bowl dating to1986. The McNeese State game marks only the third season opener for theHurricanes on their home field since 1988, a span of 13 seasons.

The Series: This is the first meeting between Miami and McNeese State.McNeese State, located in Lake Charles, La., is the seventh school from thestate of Louisiana to appear on Miami’s schedule. UM is 16-14-1 (.532)all-time vs. Louisiana schools, 11-6 (.647) at home vs. those teams. Thisis UM’s first meeting with a Louisiana team since a 44-3 win at LSU in 1988.

OVER THE AIRWAVES

Television

Fox Sports Net – (Tape Delay- 1:00 a.m., Thursday, 7:30 p.m. Monday, Sept.4): Frank Forte (play-by-play), John Congemi (analysis).

Radio:

Hurricane Radio Network (WQAM 560 AM): Marc Vandermeer (play-by-play), JoeZagacki (analysis) and Don Bailey, Jr. (analysis). All UM football gameswill be carried statewide by the Hurricane Radio Network on its flagshipstation WQAM in Miami.

En Espanol (WACC 830 AM): Jerry del Castillo (play-by-play), Joe Martinez(analysis) and Pepe Campos (studio).

Student Radio (WVUM 90.5 FM): Joel Mendes (play-by-play).

Internet

Internet audio broadcasts of Hurricane games are available by accessinghurricanesports.com and clicking on “internet audio broadcasts” on theathletics home page.

HEAD COACH BUTCH DAVIS: Butch Davis (Arkansas ’74) is in his sixth season atMiami. Davis has compiled a 40-19 overall record and a 26-9 mark in BIGEAST games. His record includes a 21-9 record at the Orange Bowl, whilegoing 15-10 on the road. Additionally, Davis’ UM teams are 4-0 inneutral-site games.

Davis is the 18th head coach in UM history. Prior to hisappointment in January, 1995, Davis served as an assistant coach with theDallas Cowboys from 1989-94 where he helped guide the Cowboys to a pair ofSuper Bowl championships. Davis also served as an assistant coach at UMfrom 1984-88 (where he was part of Miami’s 1987 National Championship team)and at Oklahoma State from 1979-83.

HIGHEST PRESEASON RANKING SINCE 1993: Miami’s No. 5 preseason ranking by theAssociated Press is UM’s highest season-opening rank under Head Coach ButchDavis. Additionally, it is the highest preseason rank since 1993’s No. 4 APranking. UM’s previous preseason-high during the Davis era was 11th in1996. UM has been ranked in the AP preseason poll 21 times. Since 1983 (18seasons), UM has been preseason ranked by AP 15 times.

UM OPENS SEASON ON A THURSDAY: The McNeese State game marks UM’s fifthThursday appearance all-time, with UM holding a 3-1 mark. UM will also bemaking its fourth Thursday appearance in five seasons. The Hurricanes’first victory on a Thursday was a 40-10 defeat of Houston at the Orange Bowlon Sept. 12, 1991. In its last Thursday game, Miami defeated Pittsburgh,38-10, at home on Nov. 19, 1998.

MIAMI IN SEASON OPENERS: Miami holds a 49-24-1 (.650) all-time record in 74previous season-openers, including a current four-game win streak. Thefour-game win streak is the third-longest win streak for UM in seasonopeners. Additionally, Miami has won 12 of its last 14 season openers since1986.

At the Orange Bowl, Miami is 34-13-1 (.713) in 48 season-openinggames with a four-game win streak dating back to 1986. The McNeese Stategame marks just the third season-opener at the Orange Bowl since 1988, 13seasons.

McNEESE STATE IS UM’S 75TH HOME OPENER: In 74 previous home openers, Miamihas forged a 54-19-1 (.739) all-time record. Additionally, UM has won 13 ofits last 14 home openers, including two straight. UM’s lone loss in 14 homeopeners since 1985 was, 23-12, to Arizona State in 1997.

UM VS. LOUISIANA SCHOOLS: Since the start of the Miami football program, theHurricanes have forged a 16-14-1 record against schools in Louisiana, yet UMhas only played a Louisiana school twice since 1979 (Lousiana Tech, ’79 andLouisiana State, 1988). UM’s 2000 schedule features two schools fromLouisiana (McNeese State and Louisiana Tech). Additionally, UM is 11-6against Louisiana schools at home.

AT THE HALF: In the last nine season openers, Miami has outscored theopposition 147-25 in the first half, allowing just two touchdowns.

FOURTH QUARTER DOMINANCE: In 14 previous seasons, Miami has been almostunbeatable when leading after three-quarters. Since 1985, Miami has won 129of 131 regular season games in which it entered the fourth quarter with alead. The two losses in this span occurred against East Carolina (1999) andWest Virginia (1997). Prior to these two losses, UM last lost when leadingafter three-quarters in 1984 against Maryland, 42-20, after leading 34-21heading into the final stanza.

UM STANDS TALL IN THE BIG EAST: After nine seasons of competition in the BIGEAST Conference, Miami has forged a league-best 45-10 (.818) conferencemark. Additionally, UM’s four BIG EAST titles are also a league best, aheadof Syracuse (3), Virginia Tech (3) and West Virginia (1).

IF MIAMI SCORES FIRST: When Miami scores first it is nearly a lock to win.Beginning with the 1983 season, the Hurricanes have gone 135-14 (93%) whenscoring first. Under Butch Davis, UM is 28-7 when scoring first.

STREAKS WHEN MIAMI SCORES 30 OR MORE POINTS: Miami has won 73 consecutivegames when scoring 30 or more points, since dropping a 31-30 decision atNotre Dame in 1988. Additionally, UM has won 94 consecutive games whenscoring more than 30 points since falling 39-37 to UCLA in the 1985 FiestaBowl.

BETTER LUCK NEXT TIME: Miami and McNeese State are meeting for the firsttime. The Hurricanes are 85-58-2 (.593) all-time in series openers includinga 17-4 (.809) mark since 1980. Miami is 13-1 (.929) in series openers at theOrange Bowl since 1980. UM’s one defeat during that span came againstWashington in 1994. The Hurricanes are 66-38-2 (.632) all-time in seriesopeners played in Miami.

UM TO BE BROADCAST NATIONALLY: Miami’s ABC televised game at Washingtonmarks the Hurricanes 55th appearance on the network. UM first appeared onABC in 1961 against Pittsburgh and holds a 34-20 (.630) all-time record onthe network. All-time, UM is 97-48 (.669) on network television.

UM VS. RANKED/UNRANKED OPPONENTS: From 1990-99, Miami forged a 23-20 markagainst nationally-ranked teams and a 67-7 record against unrankedopponents.

MIAMI VS. FIRST-YEAR COACHES: First-year McNeese State head coach Tommy Tatewill be the first first-year head coach UM has faced since Bobby Wallace andTemple on November 14, 1998. UM holds a three-game win streak againstfirst-year head coaches and is 5-1 in the Butch Davis era. Overall, UM haswon 26 of its last 27 games vs. teams under the helm of a first-year coach.Miami had its 23-game win streak vs. first-year coaches snapped atPittsburgh September 18, 1997.

UM STAYS “NO. 1” AT THE NFL DRAFT: During the last 14 years, Miami hasproduced more NFL first-round draft picks than any other college. At the2000 NFL Draft, former tight end Daniel “Bubba” Franks became the 21stHurricane since 1987 to get picked in the first round when he was selectedwith the 14th pick by the Green Bay Packers. The 2000 Draft also marked thesixth straight year that a Hurricane was chosen in the first round.

DON’T MESS WITH TEXAS: When freshman Charles Pharms, a resident of Houston,recorded his first start in the 1988 season’s sixth game against Cincinnatiit would begin a streak of 137 consecutive games that at least one playerfrom the state of Texas has started for Miami. The 2000 Hurricane rosterboasts eight players from the “Lone-Star” state, including tackle DamioneLewis (Sulphur Springs) and Chris Campbell (Mt. Pleasant) who are mainstaysin the starting line-up. UM added two players from Texas to the 2000roster, defensive ends Cornelius Green (Kilgore) and John Square (Houston).

BUTCH DAVIS TV SHOW: The Butch Davis TV Show, hosted by WPLG sportscasterFrank Forte, is a weekly program featuring Head Coach Butch Davis. Producedby Fairway Production Group, the show takes an in-depth look at Hurricanefootball. The half-hour program contains game and practice highlights,player features and sit-down interviews. Throughout the year, the ButchDavis Show airs on WPLG-Channel 10 at 11:30 a.m. every Saturday.

HURRICANE HOTLINE AIRS THURSDAY: The Hurricane Hotline radio show will airThursday evenings, from 6-8 p.m., during the football season on UM’sflagship station WQAM 560 AM. The two-hour talk show features Head CoachButch Davis and Athletic Director Paul Dee, as well as Hurricane assistantcoaches and players. Hurricane Hotline is hosted by Don Bailey Jr. and MarcVandermeer. Hurricane Hotline will air every Thursday during the 2000season with the exception of three dates. With the McNeese State gamekicking off the season on Thursday, August 31, the Hotline will move toFriday, September 1. Prior to the trip to Seattle, for the Washington game,the Hotline will air on Wednesday, September 6 from 6-7:30 p.m. WithThanksgiving on Thursday, November 23, the Hotline will air one-day earlieron Wednesday, November 22.

COACHES BREAKFASTS AND LUNCHEONS: Throughout the season, University of Miamicoaches will appear at breakfasts in Dade County and luncheons in BrowardCounty hosted by the Hurricane Club. Individual tickets to the breakfastsare $6 for Hurricane Club donors and $7 for non-Hurricane Club donors, whilethe luncheons are $16 for donors and $18 for non-donors. Season seriestickets for the breakfast are $46 and $80 for the luncheons. Contact LeinadCross at (305) 284-6705 for more information.

FOOTBALL SINGLE-GAME TICKETS ON SALE: Single-game tickets are now on sale.Season tickets, which start at $99, are also available. Tickets can bepurchased at the UM ticket office, all Ticketmaster locations, athurricanesports.com or by calling 1-800-GO CANES. The UM ticket office islocated in the Hecht Athletic Center, 5821 San Amaro Drive, on the CoralGables campus and is open 9-6 p.m., Monday through Friday, and from 9a.m.-12 p.m. on Saturday.

PUBLIX’ CANES FEVER IS BACK: From August 31 to October 25, purchase any itemat Publix Supermarkets that is marked with the ‘Canes Fever sticker andreceive a 2-for-1 game ticket to either Louisiana Tech, Pittsburgh or BostonCollege. With over 160 vendors participating, the 2000 season is the 17thyear that UM and Publix have teammed together ‘Canes Fever.

MOSS, WAYNE ON BILETNIKOFF WATCH LIST: Receivers Santana Moss and ReggieWayne were among 35 players selected to the preseason “Watch List” for the2000 Biletnikoff Award. Moss was one of 10 semifinalists for Award in 1999.Additionally, Wayne was also selected to the “Watch List” prior to the 1998season. UM is one of two schools in the BIG EAST (Pittsburgh) and sixschools nationally to have two players on the 2000 Biletnikoff Award list.The BIG EAST Conference has the second-most players on the list with six(SEC, 7).

JAMES JACKSON NAMED TO DOAK WALKER WATCH LIST: James Jackson has been namedone of 35 preseason candidates for the 2000 Doak Walker Award Presented byVectrix, which is awarded annually to the nation’s top college runningback.The selection to the preseason Walker list marks the second consecutiveseason Jackson has made the start list for the award.

UM RETURNS PLENTY OF OFFENSE: Miami nearly returns its entire offensivebackfield, which accounted 2,010 of 2,087 (.963) rushing yards and 20 of 22(.909) rushing touchdowns in 1999. Additionally, UM returns playersresponsible for 272 of its 404 points scored. Subtract kicker AndyCrosland’s 82 points and Miami returns 272 of 322 (.845) points scored lastseason.

FINISHING THE 1999 REGULAR SEASON STRONG: Over the last three regular seasongames of the 1999 season, Miami outscored its opponents, 155-13 (55-0 overRutgers, 45-13 over Syracuse, 55-0 over Temple). Prior to 1999, the mostpoints scored by the Hurricanes over a three-game span was 152 points scoredin three consecutive games (71-6 over Piedmont, 10/28/33, 48-0 over Bowden,11/4/33, 33-7 over Louisville, 11/10/33).

MIAMI’S 1999 REGULAR SEASON SCORING BEST IN THE 1990’s: Miami’s 404 pointsduring the regular season is the most scored by any UM team in the regularseason during the 1990’s. Additionally, the 432 overall points placed thirdamong UM teams in the 1990’s. The 404 points surpassed 1998’s 402 pointsand 1990’s 401 points. The 1999 season total is also the third time thisdecade UM has surpassed the 400-point plateau. The 432 overall points were138 points more than Butch Davis’ inaugural 1995 season (294).

IN THE REDZONE

Last season, the Hurricanes scored 48 times in 55 trips into theredzone. Of those 48 successful drives, 38 were touchdowns. UM’s opponentstravelled 33 times into the redzone, scoring on 24 in 1999.

100-YARD GAMES: Last season, then-true freshman Clinton Portis led the teamwith five 100-yard rushing games. Portis’ five 100-yard performances tiedhim for third-place on the UM career chart in that category. Edgerrin James(14, 1996-98) holds the school-record for 100-yard rushing games in acareer. Additionally, James Jackson had three 100-yard rushing games in1999 to give him seven for his career, to place him third all-time at UM.

In 1999, Santana Moss was the lone UM receiver to record a 100-yardgame. Moss had nine catches for 180 yards at Florida State, which markedcareer-highs for the junior receiver. The 100-yard effort was the third ofhis career. In the 1999 season-opener vs. Ohio State, Moss totaled 115yards on three catches.

TRUE FROSH BACKFIELD: Last season, then-true freshmen Ken Dorsey and ClintonPortis each played in the same backfield vs. Florida A&M and Virginia Techand each started against Rutgers, Syracuse and Temple. Dorsey and Portisbecame the first true freshman quarterback-running back tandem to play at UMsince quarterback Craig Erickson and running back Leonard Conley playedtogether in eight games as reserves in 1987. Prior to 1999, the last timea true freshman quarterback and running back had started at UM was on Dec.3, 1977, when QB Kenny McMillan and fullback Chris Hobbs both started vs.Notre Dame.

MIAMI SETS BIG EAST MARGIN OF VICTORY MARK TWICE: Miami’s 55-0 win overTemple tied for the largest margin of victory by UM over a BIG EASTopponent. UM also defeated Rutgers, 55-0, two games prior. Entering theRutgers game, Miami’s biggest win in a league game was a 49-0 win overSyracuse on October 23, 1993 in the Orange Bowl. Additionally, the winmarks the sixth time that Miami has shut out a BIG EAST opponent.

MORGAN NAMED TO 2000 NAGURSKI WATCH LIST: Dan Morgan was one of 38 playersselected to the 2000 Mike Fox/Bronko Nagurski Trophy Watch List. Lastseason, Morgan was a semifinalist for the Nagurski award. Of the 38 playersselected Morgan was the lone BIG EAST candidate.

UM DEFENSE SHUTTING DOWN THE PASSING TD’S IN 1999: The UM defense enters the2000 season without giving up a passing touchdown in 27 straight quarters, aspan of 6 games. The last passing touchdown came in the first quarter ofthe West Virginia game on October 30, 1999. The UM defense has also held itsopponents without a passing TD in 32 of the last 34 quarters dating back tothe FSU game on October 9, 1999. Additionally, the UM defense has not givenup a second-half passing TD in the last nine games, giving up just two allof the 1999 season. UM enters the 2000 season having given up just twofirst quarter passing TD’s in the last eight games.

UM DEFENSE BECOMES MASTER OF THE TURNOVER: Since the 1997 season, when mostof the UM defenders saw their first action, the Hurricane defense has becomestronger in recording the take-away. In 1999, the UM defense exceeded itsprevious two season totals in interceptions and fumble recoveries.

DEFENSE WAS ON FEVERISH TURNOVER PACE IN 1999: With 35 turnovers (17 INT, 18Fumbles) last season, the Hurricanes posted their highest amount sinceforcing 44 turnovers (21 interceptions, 23 fumbles) in 1986.

HURRICANE DEFENSE KEPT OPPONENTS FROM SCORING IN 1999: The UM defense gaveup 12 first half touchdowns and 10 second half touchdowns last season, anaverage of 1.0 TD’s scored in the first half and 0.8 TD’s in the secondhalf. Overall, the UM defense gave up 22 TD’s last season or 1.8 per gameover 12 regular season games.

BREAKDOWN OF PASS/RUSH TD’S ALLOWED PER GAME/BY HALF IN 1999: Last season,the UM defense allowed 0.66 passing TD’s (8) and 1.16 (14) rushing TD’s pergame. By half, the 1999 defense allowed 0.5 (6) passing TD’s and 0.5 (6)rushing TD’s in the first half and 0.16 (2) passing TD’s and 0.66 (8)rushing TD’s in the second half.

SACK ATTACK: Last season, the UM defense registered 37 sacks, 14 shy of theschool-record (51, 1989). Against Rutgers last season, the defense came onesack shy of the school single-game record when it sacked the Scarlet Knights10 times. Miami set the record with 11 sacks vs. N.C. State on November 20,1982 and again vs. San Diego State on November 18, 1989.

DEFENSE IMPROVES FROM 1998 TO 1999: The UM defense improved dramatically inevery statistical category from 1998 to 1999. The most significantturnaround came in pass defense, where the Hurricanes went from 85th in 1998to 11th in 1999.

WHAT AN IMPACT: In Butch Davis’ five previous seasons as UM’s head coach,the Hurricanes have blocked 37 kicks. In the 10 years prior to Davis’arrival (1985-94), the Hurricanes blocked 23 kicks. UM established a newsingle-season record with 12 blocks in 1995, shattering the previous high ofsix set in 1970. Since 1951, Miami has blocked 92 kicks.