Miami D muscles up on third down

Originally Published: October 28, 2003
By Jorge Milian | Special to ESPN.com
Miami has been playing very good defense, but the numbers aren't spectacular except in one area -- stopping opponents from converting on third-down situations.

Through the Hurricanes' first seven games, the defense has allowed opponents to convert only 18 percent (16-of-89) of their opportunities on third down. That's a huge improvement over last season, when Miami permitted a 29.8 percent success rate.

It's also an impressive number against the rest of the nation. The NCAA doesn't rank defenses on their ability to stop opponents on third down. But among schools in the six BCS conferences, no one has been better in those situations than Miami.