The #3 ranked Miami Hurricanes head north to take on the Pittsburgh Panthers in a game that is a must win for The U. Miami is on a collision course to battle Clemson for the ACC title and a CFP spot. They are locked in for the ACC championship game, but a loss to Pitt could derail any CFP aspirations. For Pitt, their season is over. They have nothing left to play for as they’re not even bowl eligible. Kickoff inside Heinz Field is at 12 PM ET.
Since 1999, Miami is 9-1 against Pitt. The Panthers only win during that stretch came in 2014. Not even their solid team of last year was able to defeat Miami. The Hurricanes have also won all 6 games in Pittsburgh during that stretch.
Pitt (4-7, 2-5 ACC) is coming off a hard fought 20-14 loss to Virginia Tech last weekend. With bowl game eligibility on the line, Pitt couldn’t punch it in the end zone on VT at the end of the game to win. With the loss, Pitt is now eliminated from bowl eligibility and is just thinking about holiday plans. They’ve lost 2 straight games and pose no real threat against Miami this week.
Miami (10-0, 7-0 ACC) has won 15 straight games dating back to last season. They’ve put up over 40 points per game in their last 2 games and came from behind to beat an inspired Virginia team last weekend. Miami is in a great position right now. Even though a loss to Pitt wouldn’t eliminate them from the ACC title game, it could hurt their CFP chances.
The spread opened with Miami favored by 14 points and it has remained unchanged. The Over/Under opened at 50 points and has gone up to 51 total points.
I don’t see Pitt having any chance this game. With nothing to play for, not even a potential upset will be inspiring enough to compete against one of the top teams in the country. Additionally, Miami has had a stranglehold on this head-to-head series since the 90’s.
Last week, Pitt went up against a tough VT defense, which is comparable to Miami’s. During that game, Pitt only rushed for 55 yards which is significantly less than their 148 yards per game. Miami will contain Pitt’s decent running attack this week and put pressure on whichever quarterback that Pitt throws out there.
On the season, Miami’s defense is only allowing 17.7 points per game. They’ve also forced 27 turnovers on the season, which is good for 3rd in the nation. In 2 out of the last 3 weeks, Miami completely shut down two ranked opponents. 3 weeks ago, Miami held the #13 ranked Hokies to just 10 points and the #3 ranked Fighting Irish to just 8 points. Their defense is phenomenal when they’re motivated.
Offensively, Miami is scoring 33.7 ppg on the season and 442 total yards per game. Their passing attack has been the driving force as Malik Rosier has 2,620 passing yards, 23 passing TD’s and 9 int’s on the season. Pitt gives up 260 passing yards per game, which is 5 yards less than what Miami averages per game.
No matter what stat you look at, Miami has Pitt’s number and they will prove it on Friday. I expect that Hurricanes defense to shut down a lifeless Pitt offense. Look for Miami to force at least 2 turnovers and only allow Pitt to 275 total yards, less than 17 points and less than 100 yards on the ground.
Offensively, Rosier will get his yards and points. I expect him to throw for over 300 yards and at least 3 TD’s this game. Miami will destroy Pitt this weekend and head into the ACC title game with a lot of momentum. Miami 41 – Pitt 17.
Miami is 10-5 ATS in their last 15 games, 4-1 ATS in their last 5 road games, 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games against the Panthers and 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games in Pittsburgh. Pitt is 4-7-2 ATS in their last 13 games and 5-14 ATS in their last 19 home games.