He didn’t score any touchdowns, but Ahmmon Richards still turned several thousand heads Saturday in the University of Miami’s 51-28 victory over Pittsburgh.
For the second time this season, Richards set the single-game receiving record for a true freshman with 144 yards on a career-high eight receptions at Hard Rock Stadium.
The 6-1, 192-pounder out of Wellington High had 142 receiving yards on four catches in UM’s Sept. 17 victory over Appalachian State — Richards’ first career road game.
“It was just a great day, I guess,’’ said Richards, who finished the first half with five catches for 83 yards. “The coaches were trusting me. And [quarterback] Brad [Kaaya], he trusted me also. They ran a lot of man, so we just took advantage of that.’’
Richards now ranks fourth for most receiving yards by a freshman with 632.
“He has a wonderful skill set, just a sharp kid,’’ UM coach Mark Richt said.
Said Kaaya: “He’s only a freshman, which is crazy.’’
After his team scored 27 unanswered points at Notre Dame and still lost, Richt adjusted his practices this past week “to change the tempo of the beginning of the day’’ to a much more intense one.
Richt said the Canes almost immediately “went right after each other with our team-run drill — offense vs. defense. … Then we finished with offense vs. defense …’’
It worked. Miami scored on its opening drive for the first time since Oct. 1 against Georgia Tech.
GETTING HIS KICKS
Kicker Michael Badgley has had his troubles this season, including having an extra point blocked that would have tied the score with Florida State late in the fourth quarter.
But Saturday was a good day for Badgley, who connected on 46- and 48-yard field goals in the first half and a 25-yard field goal in the final quarter. He also hit a 36-yarder that was called back because of a holding penalty but kicked the 46-yarder on the next play.
Badgley, a junior, is a perfect 17 of 17 on field-goal attempts from 40 to 49 yards in his career.
Richt said center Nick Linder “was hurt all week in practice … sucking it up’’ regardless, and that by halftime Saturday “he was shot.”
“I don’t know what that means for next week, but [Alex] Gall did come in. When you don’t notice any fumbled snaps or you don’t notice any sacks and you run the ball well, you have to imagine he played well.’’
Receiver Stacy Coley, now No. 2 on UM’s all-time receptions list behind Reggie Wayne, said his previous left-knee injury began hurting again when he fell at 12:35 of the second quarter. He continued playing.
Injured from Pitt: defensive tackles Shakir Soto and Tyrique Jarrett on the same play in the first half and receiver Tre Tipton.
THIS AND THAT
▪ UM is still committing plenty of penalties. The Canes were flagged eight times for 71 yards, including three by Coley in the first half.
▪ Sheldrick Redwine broke up a fourth-down, trick-pass play from Pitt punter Ryan Winslow in the first quarter.
▪ Former tight end Standish Dobard got some plays in at defensive end for the first time in his career, registering a solo tackle.
▪ The UM team captains were Badgley, defensive tackle Kendrick Norton and tight ends David Njoku and Chris Herndon.