Originally created 10/26/01

No. 1 Miami 45, West Virginia 3



MIAMI -- Top-ranked Miami overcame a slow start and a sloppy field Thursday night against West Virginia.

Ken Dorsey threw two touchdown passes, tying the school record of 48 held by Steve Walsh and Vinny Testaverde, as the Hurricanes beat the Mountaineers 45-3 for their 16th consecutive victory.

Miami, fourth in the Bowl Championship Series standings, hoped to win impressively and possibly gain ground on the leaders. The Hurricanes needed more than a quarter to get on track.

West Virginia's Avon Cobourne ran for 95 yards in the first half as the Mountaineers held tough. The game was tied at 3 after one quarter, and West Virginia was looking to tie it at 10 when James Lewis intercepted a pass and returned it 74 yards for a score.

The Hurricanes (6-0, 3-0 Big East) ran away from there, scoring 28 second-half points behind backup running back Frank Gore and dominating the Mountaineers (2-5, 0-3) defensively.

Gore, a freshman from Miami, had six carries for 124 yards and two touchdowns. He had a 45-yard run in the third quarter and added a 49-yarder in the fourth.

Clinton Portis had 76 yards and a touchdown on 21 carries before giving way to Gore. With the game in hand, Portis sat out most of the fourth quarter - as did most starters, including Dorsey.

Dorsey didn't look particular sharp in the steady rain. He was 16-of-27 for 192 yards and threw an interception. He also fumbled once.

Miami's defense, led by safety Ed Reed, picked up the slack. Reed had two interceptions for the second consecutive game and recovered a fumble. Reed had two interceptions against Florida State on Oct. 13 and also blocked a punt that Miami returned for a touchdown in the 49-27 win.

The Hurricanes, who finished with seven sacks and six turnovers against the Seminoles, had five sacks and six turnovers against West Virginia.

With the game tied at 3, Reed intercepted Derek Jones' pass and set up Miami's first touchdown.

Dorsey hit tight end Jeremy Shockey in the flat on third-and-goal, and as Shockey was being tackled by two defenders, he stretched the ball across the goal line with his right hand for the score.

Six plays later, the Hurricanes scored again - this one coming on Lewis' interception. Linebacker D.J. Williams hit Jones, causing his pass to float across the middle. Lewis picked it off, then worked his way down the sideline to make it 17-3.

Jones entered the game in the first quarter when starter Brad Lewis injured his neck. Lewis, being driven to the ground by 346-pound defensive tackle Vince Wilfork, hit his head on teammate Tim Brown's knee.

Lewis stayed on the ground for several minutes, then was helped off the field. He had precautionary X-rays during halftime.

The Hurricanes had a couple of injuries, too. Starting linebacker Jonathan Vilma and wide receiver Daryl Jones did not play with ankle injuries. Defensive end Andrew Williams and backup running back Willis McGahee left the game with knee injuries.