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Miami vs. NC State Football Prediction and Preview

Miami vs. NC State Football Prediction and Preview

Miami vs. NC State Football Prediction and Preview

After a much-needed bye week for both teams, the Miami Hurricanes and NC State Wolfpack will meet each other under the lights in primetime.

Miami has gotten off to a 5-1 start with the one blemish coming against No. 1 Clemson Tigers on Oct. 10. It's the third time in four years that the Canes have gotten off to such a strong start.

NC State has a 4-2 record but is coming off a loss to in-state rival North Carolina. The Wolfpack will begin their first of three consecutive games at home.

This will be the 16th time the Hurricanes and Wolfpack have met on the football field — but the first time since 2016. Miami holds a 9-5-1 advantage in the series and has also won the last two games in 2012 and '16.

Miami at NC State

Kickoff: Friday, Nov. 6 at 7:30 p.m.

TV: ESPN

Spread: Miami -10.5

When Miami Has the Ball

Even when things haven't been perfect, Hurricanes quarterback D'Eriq King has been a catalyst for their offense this season. King has thrown for 1,401 yards, 11 touchdowns, and four interceptions. He also has rushed 301 yards and two touchdowns.

However, the Hurricanes' rushing attack has struggled recently. In their last three weeks, Miami has averaged 2.8 yards per attempt. Cam'Ron Harris and his struggles appear to be at the source of Miami's inability to gain much ground.

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During the last three games, Harris has a total of 35 yards on 28 carries — a paltry 1.25 yards per carry. In the Hurricanes' 19-14 victory over Virginia, Donald Chaney Jr. was their leading rusher with just 43 yards on the ground.

NC State's defense is giving up 182.0 rushing yards per game, which is 70th in the nation, so expect this to be a point of emphasis for the Hurricanes. Chunk plays have been an issue, as their 10 runs allowed of 20 or more yards this season are tied for 80th nationally.

When NC State Has the Ball

The NC State offense hasn't been the same since starting quarterback Devin Leary suffered a broken fibula against Duke a few weeks ago. That made Bailey Hockman the starting quarterback, but he struggled in the loss to North Carolina.

Hockman completed 14-of-24 passes for 215 yards, one touchdown, and one interception. True freshman Ben Finley actually came in relief, but Hockman returned after Finley threw two interceptions.

The lack of a passing game has also affected the Wolfpack's rushing game, as they rushed for only 34 yards against the Tar Heels. Miami has given up 150.8 yards per game on the ground, so expect NC State to use the running game to try and take pressure off of Hockman. If the Wolfpack can run the football, that should open things up in the passing game.

Final Analysis

The NC State offense clearly isn't the same without Leary, and things won't get any easier against Miami's defense. The Hurricanes are averaging 2.5 sacks per game, which is tied for 41st nationally.

The Wolfpack could have even more problems on another side of the ball because they will face a dual-threat quarterback in King. NC State will need to tighten its rushing defense to force King to be one-dimensional since he is just as dangerous with his legs as he is with his arm.

The Wolfpack's secondary has also struggled this season; they're giving up 265.5 passing yards per game. Add that in with the 34.2 points per game NC State is giving up, and it could be a long night defensively for them.

Prediction: Miami 38, NC State 21

Podcast: Week 10 Preview and Predictions

— Written by Antwan Staley, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network and has extensive experience covering Florida sports teams. Staley has written for Bleacher Report, the Miami Herald and the Palm Beach Post and is a reporter for Pro Player Insiders. Follow him on Twitter @antwanstaley.