CORAL GABLES – The Hurricanes home crowd said goodbye to a group of players who are ineligible or may have played their final home game with Miami on Saturday.
UM honored those players with a Senior Day ceremony before its heartbreaking 38-31 loss to Louisville.
Players participating in Senior Day were: Souleymane Bangoura, KJ Cloyd, Corey Flagg Jr., Javion Cohen, Jaden Davis, Branson Deen, Luis Gutierrez Jr., Tyler Harrell, Will Hutchinson, Keontra Smith, Matt Lee, Jake Lichtenstein, Josh Neely. , Chris Pastora, Lucas Peterson, Fred Potter, Ryan Ragone, Rocky Shelton, Jefferson Walls, Chris Washington and Chantz Williams.
“It means a lot, man. I just have to try to get them this win,” sophomore linebacker Wesley Bissainthe said earlier in the week. “It could be his last game at Hard Rock. So you just have to give it your all and try to get the W for those guys. It means a lot that we young people can help the older people win. Just wish them the best of luck.”
Louisville wins first Howard Schnellenberger Trophy
The Cardinals didn’t just win on Saturday. They earned the first award of the Howard Schnellenberger Trophy, a new honor given to the winner of the Miami-Louisville game. The trophy honors former Hurricanes and Cardinals coach Howard Schnellenberger.
The trophy was created for the matchup, which was to be an annual rivalry series in the ACC’s scheduling model. However, when Cal, SMU and Stanford joined the conference, the ACC needed to make additional changes and UM-Louisville will no longer be an annual series. The Hurricanes will play the Cardinals on the road in 2024, at home in 2025 and again in Miami Gardens in 2027.
Keontra Smith and Leonard Taylor miss the defeat
Starting defensive tackle Leonard Taylor III and Miami veteran linebacker Keontra Smith missed Saturday’s game due to injuries, Mario Cristobal said.
Taylor, a junior, has 19 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss and one sack this season.
“Leonard Taylor tried to play, but he couldn’t,” Cristobal said. “He suffered something last week and he couldn’t play.”
Smith, a fifth-year senior, has played in nine games with eight tackles and one tackle for loss in the reserve linebacker role.
Miami struggles against Louisville tight ends
When the Cardinals needed to gain some yards in crucial situations, they often turned to their tight ends.
Louisville tight ends combined for 113 receiving yards on 10 receptions. They scored a pair of touchdowns for the Cardinals. Starter Nate Kurisky had five receptions for 50 yards and a score, Joey Gatewood had three receptions for 51 yards, Josh Lifson had one reception for 11 yards and defensive lineman Trevonte Sylvester, who lined up at tight end, caught a 1 pass. yard. pass for a touchdown.
“This team is going to put a lot of pressure on us on the outside and take away our outside receivers and make us go over their heads, so when that happens, you have to work a little bit in the middle of the field and those guys have to get open and be physical,” Louisville coach Jeff Brohm said. “I think Coach (Ryan) Wallace and our tight end group have worked hard. We wanted to use them more. To be a successful team, you have to be able to dominate the midfield more than us and they have to be a huge compliment to us.”