No. 1 Miami Flattens No. 14 Syracuse, 59-0
Nov 17, 2001
By MARK LONG
AP Sports Writer
MIAMI – Ken Dorsey put No. 1 Miami back on track for the nationalchampionship game, throwing four touchdown passes as the Hurricanes overwhelmedNo. 14 Syracuse 59-0 Saturday.
Dorsey, coming off four interceptions in a near loss to Boston College,rebounded against the Orangemen (8-3, 5-1 Big East). With teammate BryantMcKinnie shutting down NCAA sack leader Dwight Freeney, Dorsey picked apart thesecondary, and the Hurricanes snapped Syracuse’s eight-game winning streak.
Miami (9-0, 6-0) also secured at least a share of the Big East title,virtually locking up a spot in a Bowl Championship Series game. Now theHurricanes want to make sure it is the Rose Bowl – and No. 16 Washington andNo. 18 Virginia Tech are all that stands in their way.
Dorsey, facing little pressure all night, was 13-of-20 for 224 yards. Hethrew two TD passes to Andre Johnson and two to Jeremy Shockey, then spent thefourth quarter on the sideline with a towel draped around his neck and anorange Hurricanes baseball cap on backward.
Clinton Portis ran 18 times for 132 yards and scored once. He also sat outthe fourth.
The Hurricanes, thanks mostly to McKinnie, held Freeney without a sack.Freeney broke the NCAA season record last week with 16 sacks.
Miami’s defense – led by cornerback Phillip Buchanon – did the rest.
Buchanon returned an interception 76 yards for a touchdown in the fourthquarter, recovered a fumble that led to a touchdown and a 17-0 lead in thesecond and added a 17-yard sack. He also returned a punt 59 yards.
The Hurricanes held Syracuse’s ball-control, mistake-free, option-styleoffense to 185 total yards.
James Mungro carried 17 times for 49 yards, and R.J. Anderson was 9-of-18passing for 66 yards. Anderson, a sophomore who replaced Troy Nunes at midwaythrough this season, fell to 9-2 as a starter. Both losses have come againstMiami.
Syracuse is 0-3 against the Hurricanes since beating them 66-13 in theCarrier Dome in 1998 and has been outscored 130-13 in the three meetings.
Miami scored on four of its six first-half possessions, missing a field goaland punting on the Syracuse 34 after having a touchdown called back for nothaving enough men on the line of scrimmage.
The Hurricanes ended the first half on a high note, though, when Johnsoncaught a pass across the middle at the Syracuse 14, ran toward three defenders,then cut outside and scampered into the end zone for a 24-0 lead.
|Miami’s Andre Johnson hauls in the 22-yard TD pass from Ken Dorsey.
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Miami’s dominating offensive line and running game took over in the secondhalf. Freshman Frank Gore ran 11 times for a career-high 153 yards. It was thefirst time since 1997 that Miami had two 100-yard rushers in a game. The lasttime it happened, Edgerrin James ran for 151 yards and James Jackson added 115against Arkansas State.
Syracuse nearly tied its worst loss ever. Virginia Tech beat the Orangemen62-0 in 1999.
The Hurricanes can win their second consecutive Big East title with avictory against the Hokies in two weeks. Even with a loss at Virginia Tech,Miami would earn the conference’s BCS berth if it finishes within five spots ofthe Orangemen in the final BCS standings.