DURHAM, N.C. (AP) — Quentin Harris ran for one touchdown and threw for another, and Duke’s defense had nine sacks in a 27-17 victory over Miami on Saturday, snapping its five-game losing streak.
Deon Jackson ran 2 yards for the go-ahead TD one possession before Harris threw a 49-yard scoring pass to Jalon Calhoun, helping the Blue Devils (5-7, 3-5 Atlantic Coast Conference) win a game played in a persistent downpour that made things tough on the offenses.
“That effort was about pride,” Duke coach David Cutcliffe said.
Harris, who had an early 24-yard scoring run, was 10 of 24 for 156 yards and rushed for 49 yards for Duke — a figure skewed by six sacks. His 18-yard pass to Calhoun to the Miami 5 set up Jackson’s score that made it 20-17 with 9:37 to play.
Miami replaced starting QB Jarren Williams with N’Kosi Perry for the next drive — a three-and-out that netted 1 yard — and the Blue Devils needed only four plays to take a two-score lead, with Harris hitting Calhoun down the left sideline.
They stopped Miami on a fourth down at the Duke 43 with 4:32 to play, then sealed it when Trevon McSwain sacked Perry and knocked the ball loose for Koby Quansah to recover at the Miami 26 with 2:17 to play.
Williams was 11 of 26 for 142 yards with a 15-yard touchdown pass to Robert Burns and Cam’Ron Harris ran 8 yards for an early touchdown for the Hurricanes (6-6, 4-4), who closed the regular season with consecutive losses.
Miami: The Hurricanes are headed to a second-tier bowl but the lasting memory of Manny Diaz’s first season will be the numerous head-scratching losses. They lost to a last-place Georgia Tech, a seemingly inferior Florida International team — Diaz called that loss “unacceptable” earlier in the week — and now a Duke team that had been stuck in a five-game slide.
“I’m proud of our effort,” Diaz said. “However, our issues are obvious and it’s simply our ability to execute that gave us no chance to win this football game.”
Duke: At least the Blue Devils won’t have to carry a six-game losing streak into the offseason after losing close games (North Carolina, Wake Forest) and blowouts (Notre Dame, Syracuse) during a challenging 1½ months. The defense was dominant, and the offense did just enough at the right time to rally in the fourth quarter after being held to minus-6 yards on 13 offensive plays in the third.
Miami: Awaits its bowl destination and opponent.
Duke: Waits for spring practice to start.
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