• Coastal champ Pitt heads to Miami for regular-season finale

    Updated:

    No. 24 Pittsburgh (7-4, 6-1 ACC, No. 24 CFP) at Miami (6-5, 3-4), 3:30 p.m. EST (ESPN).
    Line: Miami by 5½.
    Series record: Miami leads 25-11-1.

    WHAT'S AT STAKE?
    Very little, really. Pitt has replaced Miami as the Coastal Division champion, is headed to the ACC championship game to face Clemson next week, and would secure a spot in either the Peach Bowl or the Fiesta Bowl if it finds a way to upset the Tigers. Miami is playing for optics; with a win, the Hurricanes would end up 4-4 in ACC play and ensure they finish 2018 with a winning record regardless of their bowl outcome.

    KEY MATCHUP
    Pitt WR Maurice Ffrench vs. Miami secondary. Ffrench is a big-play dynamo for the Panthers, averaging nearly 25 yards per catch so far this month with four November touchdowns. Miami is still No. 3 nationally in total defense and second-best nationally in passing yards allowed per game.


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    PLAYERS TO WATCH
    Pittsburgh: DE Rashad Weaver. Pitt's leader in tackles for loss (12), he's become a regular at harassing opposing quarterbacks.
    Miami: DT Gerald Willis III. The best story on Miami's roster this season, he's become a legit first-team All-America candidate.

    FACTS AND FIGURES
    Pitt is trying for its first five-game winning streak since 2009, when it won six in a row. ... Wins at Miami traditionally don't come easily for Pitt, which is 1-10-1 in its last 12 matchups when traveling to face the Hurricanes. ... Miami's magic number is 24 — the Hurricanes are 21-0 all-time when scoring at least 24 points against Pitt. ... Miami is going to be down to zero scholarship tight ends; Will Mallory and Brevin Jordan will both miss the game with leg injuries. ... This is the fifth time in the last six years that Pitt and Miami have matched up to end the regular season; the three games at Pitt were all on Fridays, giving Miami a short week with Thanksgiving travel. The two games at Miami, including this one, have been in the customary Saturday slot. ... Pitt will be without C Jimmy Morrissey, whose season ended Monday when he underwent ankle surgery.


     

     

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