What in the doggone wild world of sports went on out there on Saturday? It was similar to the first game in that a complete meltdown over a span of a few minutes completely altered the direction of the game. After Miami tied the score, a botched snap on the ensuing NC State drive gifted the Hurricanes two points. Miami needed five plays following the safety to score a touchdown. They picked up another when State's defense quit playing after being drawn offside. Twenty-three points in the first quarter for Miami in a span of less than five minutes.
The secondary was hot garbage all afternoon, as it appeared they'd never actually played together before. There's some blame here for NC State's front seven, of course, but much of the damage came via silly mistakes from the back four. They were their own worst enemies. And Brandan Bishop was pretty unhappy about their performance:
On similarities between today and their season opener against Tennessee:
In some respects. I mean, we just got... we got ran by today. We got guys that are turning around and, you know, you're supposed to be covering a guy!
You can't just let him run by you and do it over and over and over again. It's frustrating, man. It's really, really frustrating. Big plays, big plays early, missed opportunities... it's frustrating.
Bishop doesn't go so far as to name names here, but it's obvious who he's talking about. And it wasn't all on defense, either. The offside penalty on a Miami field goal attempt inside the 10 was absolute insanity. One of the dumbest things I've seen in a long, long time. But that typified what was a completely bizarre effort from David Amerson and the rest of the defense, from the communication to the coverage to the penalties. They picked up their effort and helped the Wolfpack get back into the game--there were good stretches, to be sure. But, man, why are there such deep fundamental flaws from a group that has a lot of experience? I'll never fully comprehend what happened on Saturday. It was a nightmare borrowed from the Amato era.