The Miami Hurricanes’ defense is terrorizing opponents, and the Atlantic Coast Conference honored two of their standouts — among many — on Monday.
Defensive end Joe Jackson was named ACC Defensive Lineman of the Week and linebacker Shaq Quarterman was named ACC Co-Linebacker of the Week for their outstanding performances on Thursday in the University of Miami’s 47-10 victory over North Carolina.
This week, the No. 17 Canes (4-1, 1-0 ACC) are preparing to face the Florida State Seminoles (3-2, 1-2) at 3:30 p.m. Saturday (ABC) at Hard Rock Stadium, and UM again will need a strong defensive performance against FSU quarterback Deondre Francois.
Last Thursday, in another nationally televised game, Miami forced six turnovers and scored three defensive touchdowns.
Jackson took an interception against UNC and ran it 42 yards for a touchdown to give UM a 24-10 lead in the second quarter. But that wasn’t all.
Jackson, a 6-5, 265-pound junior out of Miami Gulliver Prep, also forced two fumbles, had a sack, tackle for loss (five total tackles), pass breakup and quarterback hurry in the victory.
UM coach Mark Richt said Monday on WQAM that Jackson’s touchdown was “awesome.’’
“Threw a screen right to his gut,’’ Richt said, “and he took it to the house. He was showing his speed and all that kind of good stuff.’’
When asked after the victory about getting a turnover and touchdown on the same play, Jackson said regarding the coveted turnover chain, that “it’s a double whammy, because getting our chain is almost like scoring. And then scoring is scoring, so that was fun. ‘’
Quarterman, UM’s junior middle linebacker who sprained his ankle in the game, nonetheless had five tackles, two sacks, three tackles for loss, a forced fumble that resulted in a touchdown, a pass breakup and quarterback hurry.
Defensive end Jon Garvin returned Quarterman’s strip-sack 9 yards for the touchdown that gave UM a 14-3 lead.
UM is now ranked first in tackles for loss (12 a game), first in third-down conversion percentage defense (17.1 percent of attempts are converted) and second nationally in total defense (244.8 yards allowed a game).
▪ The Canes kickoff at Virginia on Oct. 13 will be at 7 p.m. and broadcast on either ESPN2 or ESPNU. The definitive station will be announced Saturday.