Miami Football: 5 Best Moments of 2013

David KenyonFeatured ColumnistJanuary 1, 2014

Miami Football: 5 Best Moments of 2013

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    Denzel Perryman decleated a couple opponents this season. Did one of his big hits make the list?
    Denzel Perryman decleated a couple opponents this season. Did one of his big hits make the list?David Manning-USA TODAY Sports

    The Miami Hurricanes' 2013 campaign ended on a sour note, but a few moments highlight the 'Canes' 9-4 season.

    Al Golden's team caught the nation's attention, defeating in-state rival Florida before the Gators had many key players fall to injury.

    Though questions about the coaching staff arose by the end of the season, Golden has this team headed in the right direction. Miami started 7-0 for the first time in 10 years and won nine games for only the second time since 2005.

    And when a program is improving, the players are making some things happen that are worth revisiting.

Tyriq McCord and Duke Johnson Seal Win over Florida

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    The Miami defense had already stepped up when it mattered the most, forcing five turnovers in its own territory, including four in the red zone.

    Down five points and with less than five minutes remaining in the game, the Gators forced a punt and had a chance to drive down the field to take the lead.

    But a sellout crowd saw sophomore Tyriq McCord smack Jeff Driskel from behind, forcing and recovering a fumble.

    Three few plays later, Duke Johnson scored the game-sealing touchdown, and Miami beat Florida for the first time since 2004.

Stacy Coley Catches Sensational Touchdown vs. South Florida

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    Against Savannah State, wide receiver Stacy Coley showed flashes of what was coming during his special freshman campaign. But his big game was against a lowly FCS school, so Miami fans were still waiting for Coley to explode against a "real" team.

    And when the 'Canes traveled to South Florida the following week, he did just that.

    Though backup quarterback Ryan Williams' fantastic throw shouldn't be overlooked, Coley went airborne, absorbed a huge hit and still managed to come down in-bounds.

    Coley finished the game with four receptions for 96 yards and two scores.

    But his second consecutive two-touchdown outing wasn't even his best performance of the year.

Dallas Crawford Replaces Duke Johnson, Scores Game-Winner vs. North Carolina

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    Dallas Crawford entered the North Carolina game as a reserve running back who had 31 career carries.

    He exited Chapel Hill, N.C. as a hero.

    Duke Johnson sold out to make a block in pass protection, but the sophomore did not return to action because of a migraine. Crawford took over for the Hurricanes' best playmaker, running the ball 17 times for 69 yards and two touchdowns during the fourth quarter alone.

    Most importantly, he scored the game-winner with 16 seconds remaining, taking a handoff and finding the end zone from three yards out.

    Overall, Crawford racked up 33 attempts, 137 yards and two touchdowns against the Tar Heels.

Denzel Perryman Destroys Wake Forest's Dominique Gibson

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    Football players are taught how to tackle at an early age, and it's a relatively simple process.

    Wrap your arms, drive your feet, plant the opponent.

    Miami linebacker Denzel Perryman unleashed a fantastic form-tackle on Wake Forest's Dominique Gibson, slamming the Deacons' running back to the ground.

    Perryman had an impressive junior season, racking up a team- and career-high 108 stops. The NFL is beckoning, but Perryman could return to "The U" for one more season.

Stacy Coley's 73-Yard Reverse Caps Sensational First Half vs. Pitt

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    After Duke Johnson fractured his ankle against Florida State, Stacy Coley became the Hurricanes' biggest offensive weapon.

    During the season finale versus Pittsburgh, Coley caught two early touchdowns and even had a chance at a third.

    But Coley's finale didn't arrived until he took a handoff on a reverse, outran a handful of Pitt defenders, cut back inside, kept his balance and chugged his way into the end zone.

    The 73-yard reverse made Coley the only player in the Football Bowl Subdivision this season to score a touchdown via a kick return, punt return, reception and rush.

    Coley concluded his Freshman All-America campaign with 33 receptions for 591 yards and seven touchdowns. On special teams, he tallied a 25.9-yard kick return average with one score and a 22.0-yard punt return average with another touchdown.