Let's just call it a Throwback Saturday for Miami. The Hurricanes may or may not be back after a 47-34 win over Louisville, but they sure did pull off a heck of an imitation of the old Miami. There was jaw jackin', there was offensive efficiency (27 points in 22 plays at one point in the second half), there was honest-to-goodness team speed.
On consecutive plays after Louisville scores, Miami hit for a pair 75-yard touchdowns (Cam'ron Harris rushing and Jaylan Knighton receiving).
Mostly, there was meaningful football at a place that hasn't seen it in a while.
"Literally, this is just the beginning," wide receiver Brevin Jordan said. "We've only played two games."
Three weeks in, the Canes are a main storyline of the 2020 college football season -- if only for the moment.
Are they going to win the ACC? Probably not. But the college football world will get excited this week over what used to be Miami vs. Florida State. The Canes will roll the head coach-less Seminoles, and the hype train will leave the station.
After beating Louisville in the first game of the season between ranked teams, it's enough to surmise that Miami is better than it has been in a while. Again, let's not go nuts as the Canes this week move up four spots into the top 10 of the Power Rankings.
Turnarounds aren't completed in the third week of the season -- especially at Miami, which has won one division title since 2003. Still, there's nothing wrong with celebrating what used to be.
Eventually, Clemson will have something to say about that when the teams meet on Oct. 10 with Miami coming off a bye. For now, let's not spoil the immediate fun.
D'Eriq King (325 yards, three touchdowns) has already proven to be Miami's best quarterback since the Brock Berlin days. For the first time in 17 games, King was unable to extend his FBS-record mark by both running and passing for a touchdown. But that's OK. So far, he has been a difference maker at the position.
"There was still a lot of stuff we left out there on the field," he said.
Miami surpassed 30 points in the first two games of the season for the first time since 2017. That's a heck of a turnaround from an unwatchable 14-0 loss in the Independence Bowl. That hype train is rolling. ESPN's "College GameDay" has already committed to a second straight Miami appearance this week.
"As a Hurricane, when you come here, it's one of the biggest if not the most important game of the season," said cornerback Al Blades Jr., who knows something about throwbacks.
His father (DB Al Blades Sr., 1996-2000) and uncles (WR Brian Blades and DB Bennie Blades, 1984-87) are all Canes.
For now, The U is back … in the top 10 of the Power Rankings.
Editor's note: Big Ten teams will be added to the Power Rankings beginning the Monday before the conference's schedule kicks off.
|Maybe the biggest news coming out of this snoozer was how The Citadel covered the spread. Actually, the Tigers could have scored 100, but Dabo Swinney has a soul. Citadel coach Brent Thompson turned down an offer from Swinney to shorten the quarters in the second half. "We came here to play 60 minutes," Thompson said. Whatever. Trevor Lawrence threw only nine times in a 49-0 win.||--||4-0|
|OU heads into Week 4 with the two most accurate passers in the country: Spencer Rattler and backup Tanner Mordecai are tied at 82.4%. Rattler will be stretched out a bit in the Big 12 opener against Kansas State. Rattler made what amounted to a cameo in the opener against Missouri State (14 of 17 for 290 yards). Is a 303.3 passer rating any good?||--||2-2|
|It's finally here. The SEC returns! Missouri has to pay in hosting the Crimson Tide. It doesn't help the Tigers will be missing 12 players due to COVID-19 concerns. The Tide are a four-touchdown favorite in the kickoff to the Angry Alabama Tour.||--||4-0|
|Nice bounce back for the Fighting Irish, who looked sluggish against Duke. Ian Book threw for 143 yards against South Florida and Notre Dame put the worst beating Bowling Green by the same score last year. The list of punching bags grows when Notre Dame visits Wake Forest.||--||3-0|
|Sam Ehlinger meet the second-worst defense in the country. Only North Texas has given up more average yards that Texas Tech, this week's opponent. The Red Raiders surrendered 600 yards to Houston Baptist in the opener. The question is when will Tom Herman turn off the faucet this week?||1||2-2|
|Ole Miss will be wearing powder blue jerseys. The Gators will be wearing the title of SEC East favorite (at least in this corner of the world). With Lane Kiffin making his Ole Miss debut (at his third SEC school), this one could be sneaky tough for the Gators going on the road.||1||2-1|
|How long will we have to wait until Kirby Smart names a starter at quarterback? Given Smart's covert lineup tendencies, it might not be until game time Saturday against Arkansas before we know.||2||3-0|
|The talent the Tigers lost could compete for a bowl game. It's not likely they will run it back, but the attempt will be interesting to watch. The SEC on CBS debuts with Mississippi State going to Baton Rouge. Be there for the Leach-Orgeron Zoom postgame.||--||1-2|
|The Turnover Chain got a workout. The Canes got three turnovers (two fumbles, one interception). "The ice is nice," cornerback Al Blades Jr. said. Louisville got a workout. Miami had 10 tackles for loss. Is "The U" back? Not yet. It would have to win a national championship to do that, but something feels different so far this year.||4||3-1|
|The Knights are officially the New Year Six's favorite out of the Group of Five and perhaps a College Football Playoff darkhorse. Dillon Gabriel for Heisman? UCF's quarterback threw for 417 yards and four touchdowns in a rout of Georgia Tech. The Knights ran 92 plays, one every 20.7 seconds. I'm pleasantly surprised Josh Heupel has become this good a coach.||4||2-2|
|Hey, look who's playing in the only SEC game this week between two ranked teams? Kentucky comes to The Plains as Bo Nix kicks off his second season and Gus Malzahn kicks off his eighth season at Auburn.||1||2-1|
|The Bearcats kicked off their season with a 55-20 wipeout of Austin Peay. "We showed we're a team not to mess around with," said tailback Gerrid Doaks after scoring four times. Things get a bit tougher this week with Army West Point coming to town.||4||3-0|
|Pokes everywhere had one heck of a Saturday. Anybody know the score of the football game? OK, that's a Matthew Wolff reference. With Spencer Sanders knocked out with a lower body injury against Tulsa, is it possible the defense will have to carry the Cowboys?||4||3-0|
|The Tar Heels will go three weeks between Games 1 and 2. COVID-19 postponed Saturday's game against Charlotte. North Carolina doesn't play again until Oct. 3 against Boston College. Fingers crossed.||3||3-0|
|This is Jimbo Fisher's best Texas A&M team. Why aren't folks more impressed? Well, the Aggies play in the SEC West where Alabama, Auburn and LSU -- at least -- are better going into the season. Vanderbilt comes in to open the season at Kyle Field.||3||2-1|
|Elijah Mitchell went for 164 rushing yards, including the winning touchdown, in overtime against Georgia State. The Ragin' Cajuns rallied from down 21-7. "I think human nature, when everybody's patting you on the back, maybe you relax a little bit," coach Billy Napier said. Yup.||1||3-0|
|Wake me with Memphis plays again. News broke Saturday that this week's game against UTSA was already off due to COVID-19. UTSA was on the schedule only because the Houston game had been postponed. What the heck is going on down there?||2||2-1|
|Everyone's underdog SEC darling opens at Auburn. The Wildcats have won a combined 18 games the last two seasons under Mark Stoops. Terry Wilson steps back in for Lynn Bowden Jr. at quarterback. If Wilson (almost 3,000 total yards in 15 career games) goes out, Auburn transfer Joey Gatewood can step in.||--||1-2|
|How bad is Syracuse? Pitt beat the Orange 21-10 despite seven penalties, three missed field goals and two turnovers. Aside from a 69-yard touchdown pass, the Panthers defense allowed 102 yards on 55 snaps.||6||3-2|
|After a postponement against Army, the Cougars host Troy this week. The win over Navy looks even better after the Midshipmen rallied to beat Tulane. The Trojans come in off a 34-point win over Middle Tennessee.||--||4-0|
Army West Point
|One of the better games of the season looms. Two top-10 rushing games clash as the Black Knights go to Cincinnati. Army leads the country at 389.5 yards per game. Cincinnati ran for 276 yards against Austin Peay. Key stat: Since 2016, the Knights have finished no lower than 14th in time of possession.||--||4-1|
|Let's finally get the Volunteers out of our mouths and onto the field. Never has an eight-win team been so analyzed. Yes, the six-game winning streak is a big deal, but for gosh sakes, let's just play. We'll get an indication right out of the box whether Tennessee is a contender or pretender in the SEC East as the Vols go to South Carolina.||--||2-2|
|The Mustangs can score with anybody after a 65-35 win at North Texas. Shane Buechele threw for four touchdowns. While we agonize over UCF and Cincinnati, let's consider whether SMU can outscore its way to an AAC title. If you've got a quarterback, you've got a chance.||NR||5-0|
|Coming off a 307-yard passing debut, redshirt freshman quarterback Grant Wells ran for 43 yards against Appalachian State. That included a 12-yard touchdown for insurance in the third quarterback. Marshall beat a ranked opponent for the first time since 2003.||NR||3-0|
|In Jeff Hafley's debut, Boston College upset Duke 26-6. The former Ohio State defensive coordinator apparently has an offense, too. Phil Jurkovec threw for 300 yards and two touchdowns. "I'm giving every one of those players a game ball," Hafley said.||NR||3-1|
Dropped out: Baylor, Louisville, Georgia Tech