The Predictions: Can Miami knock off Notre Dame?

by Gary Shelton on November 10, 2017 · 0 comments

in College Sports in Florida, Florida State University, general, University of Florida

Friday, 2 a.m.

Twenty years have passed. The volume has not ceased.

Want to get up the dander of a University of Miami football fan? Want to hear a Notre Dame fan launch into the Victory March?

Then mention the Convicts against the Catholics. In some ways, they're still playing the game.

Now, that's a catchy nickname. But all Notre Dame players weren't Catholics, and all Miami's players  weren't convicts. But some catch-

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phrases stick. Miami did lead college football in swagger, and so, on October 15 of 1988, they went to play the Fightning Irish.

Miami lost, 31-30, but Hurricane fans still insist that Cleveland Gary's knee was down before his fumble. The game ended up costing UM the national title. Notre Dame won it and UM was second.

The Hurricanes lost when they went for two with 45 seconds to go.

There will be a hint of that game in the air today when the third-ranked Irish (8-1) play against No. 7 Miami (8-0).

For those who had doubted the Hurricanes, last week's easy victory (28-10) over Virginia Tech went a long way. The Hokies had been ranked No. 13.

The Hurricanes have had their struggles, having to win close games. The best moments for Notre Dame were easy wins over No. 11 Southern California and No. 14 N.C. State.

This time, it feels like a fourth-quarter game. The Orange Bowl crowd will help UM, but Notre Dame should win at the buzzer.

Prediction: Notre Dame 31, Miami 30. Again.

Florida at South Carolina

The Gators would love to look at this game as a step toward regaining its dignity. The way things are going lately, that may be too much to ask. The Gators have lost four in a row, and they've given up 87 points in their last two games.

Once again, interim coach Randy Shannon leads the Gators. But in a season where no quarterback has played well, where the head coach has gotten fired after a messy “death-threat” conversation and the team has fielded the 111th ranked offense in America, it's going to be tough to go into Columbia to play.

It's hard to see how, at this point, the Gators turn things around.

Prediction: South Carolina 28, Florida 14

Clemson at FSU

If FSU had been what it was supposed to be, this would be a headliner game. After all, the Seminoles and the Tigers have ruled the ACC in recent years.

But FSU has struggled for reasons beyond injured quarterback Deondre Francois. The defense has had gaps, and the offensive line has sputtered. Freshman runner Cam Akers has been good, but when a team has to rely on a freshman to lead, it's in trouble.

FSU has a puncher's chance, but it cannot afford turnovers.

Prediction: Clemson 26, FSU 14.

The Pros

Jets at Bucs

Going into the season, this is one you could not conceive of the Bucs losing. Now, it's hard to imagine them winning it. Jameis Winston is out injured, and Mike Evans is out suspended. So how does Tampa Bay move the ball against the Jets?

Keep this in mind. Even with Winston and Evans out, the Bucs will be the more talented team on the field. But the Bucs have underachieved for most of the season.

Look for the Bucs' defense to play a solid game against a pedestrian Jets' offense. But it's hard to picture the Bucs having enough fireworks to win this one.

Prediction: New York 23, Tampa Bay 17

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