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Miami rolls past Savannah State

The Associated Press
Published:   |   Updated: September 22, 2013 at 12:03 AM

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MIAMI GARDENS — No. 16 Miami got a big win and might have survived a bigger scare.

Dallas Crawford and Gus Edwards each scored three touchdowns and Miami got into the end zone on its first seven possessions, rolling to a 77-7 victory over Savannah State on Saturday night.

Miami set a school record for points, doing so even after losing quarterback Stephen Morris in the first quarter with what a team official said was a sprained ankle.

“The X-rays are negative,” Miami coach Al Golden said of Morris. “We’ll be cautious with him. We’ll get him off his feet or whatever for the next 48 hours, but it looks like he’ll be fine.”

Morris got hurt with 8:51 left in the opening quarter, on a play where he was under pressure from Savannah State’s Alex Wierzbicki. Morris threw an incomplete pass and ended up on the ground for the next few moments. He ended up walking to the sideline without assistance, though he was surrounded by Miami medical personnel and moving with a pronounced limp.

He left the field for further testing.

“I thought I had a sack, but he got rid of the ball,” said Wierzbicki, who initially did not realize Morris had been hurt on the play. “He just went down like normal.”

It was about the only problem for Miami (3-0).

The Hurricanes never punted in the game, and the fourth quarter was shortened to 12 minutes by mutual consent of the coaches.

“I think you know what we were trying to do, long before the fourth quarter,” Golden said of trying to end the game by running dive plays.

Miami outgained Savannah State 637-183, held the Tigers to a 1-for-13 success rate on third down and picked off four passes. Many of Miami’s first-stringers were done for the night after the first quarter, including Duke Johnson, who had nine touches in the first 15 minutes that wound up going for 154 total yards — including a 95-yard kickoff return to open the game.

Crawford ran in from 4 yards out on Miami’s first snap, and the Hurricanes were off and running. Morris found Allen Hurns for an 80-yard touchdown on the second possession — a two-play drive — and Johnson had a 2-yard scoring run with 6:21 left in the first.

Some oddsmakers listed the Tigers as a 60-point underdog in this one.

And predictably, they were overwhelmed. That enormous 60-point spread? Miami had it covered — for the first time, anyway — with 2:22 left in the third quarter, when Edwards barreled in from 3 yards out for his second touchdown of the game. He added another later in the third that wound up closing the scoring.

DeQuan Daniels had a 75-yard touchdown run on the first play of Savannah State’s drive that followed Edwards’ second score of the night. The good feeling lasted a few seconds: Coley ran the kickoff back 88 yards for a 70-7 lead.

The Hurricanes play South Florida (0-3) next week. Golden said Morris may be able to play, but backups Ryan Williams and Gray Crow combined to complete 17 of 19 passes for 231 yards and three touchdowns.

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