For a change, the Hurricanes blow it against FSU thanks to a botched field goal.
By BOB HARIG, Times Staff Writer
Published September 6, 2005
TALLAHASSEE - Given the history of the series, the comebacks, the close wins, you could sense that Miami was going to drive the length of the Doak Campbell Stadium field on Monday night and break the hearts of Seminoles everywhere.
Isn't that always what the Hurricanes do?
Don't they always do just enough, whether it be a blocked kick or a long return or a key conversion? Isn't it Florida State coach Bobby Bowden's legacy to be tormented in such a manner?
Not this time.
With 97 yards between them and the end zone, the Hurricanes looked every bit like a team that was going to make it, no matter what. They overcame two sacks, converted four times on third down, had first and goal at the FSU 2.
Then, after getting pushed back to the 10 yard line, they lined up for the tying field goal, a chip shot of 28 yards for Clearwater's Jon Peattie - and botched the snap.
So in the ultimate of ironies, it was UM that couldn't convert a field goal with the game on the line. It wasn't wide left or right. There was no kick at all.
"It's totally disheartening," said UM coach Larry Coker, who suffered a defeat to the Seminoles for the first time in seven tries. "It was a great drive on the road. Our players handled it well. It was a storybook drive. But you have to finish."
The ninth-ranked Hurricanes can look at many areas where they were deficient in their 10-7 loss to the 14th-ranked Seminoles. Giving up nine sacks, scoring just a single touchdown, missing two field goals. ...
But the easy place to look is that final drive, which went 81 yards in 19 plays and used up 9:41.
The drive began at the UM 3 with 12:01 to play, and four times first-year quarterback Kyle Wright converted on third down by throwing to tight end Greg Olsen, who caught seven passes for 132 yards. On that last drive alone, Olsen had four receptions for 64 yards.
"We just didn't get it done," said Wright, who finished the game with 16 completions in 28 attempts for 232 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions. "We drove the whole length of the field, used up the clock, just couldn't put it in. We beat ourselves."
After a 5-yard completion to Olsen gave the Hurricanes a first down at the FSU 14, not even a false start could deny them. Wright, who completed eight passes for 98 yards (due to penalties and sacks) on the drive, found Ryan Moore for 17 yards. That gave UM first and goal at the 2.
But on first down, the FSU defense stopped tailback Tyrone Moss (who finished with 102 yards on 23 carries) for no gain. On second down, Wright was sacked for a loss of six yards. His third-down pass to Sinorice Moss went for a loss of 2.
So Peattie came on to kick the tying field goal, as routine as they seemingly come. John Rochford's snap to holder Brian Monroe was wide, but manageable. Monroe, however, saw the ball glance off his knee, and Peattie was left with no ball to kick.
"That last drive was what we thought our offense could do all day," Olsen said. "It was missed opportunities, for the most part. We stopped ourselves. It's probably the worst loss I've ever experienced."