Player of the Week: ACC

If you thought the way Stephen Morris played against Georgia Tech was a fluke, I present to you his performance against NC State this past weekend.

Morris set a school and ACC record with 566 yards passing in a thrilling 44-37 victory over the Wolfpack, tossing the 62-yard game winning score to Phillip Dorsett with 19 seconds remaining. Of that play, Morris said after the game, "I don’t really know what to say about it. It was kind of a freakish thing to happen but I just rolled out to the right, I was trying to buy time. I saw Phillip running. I didn’t want to go to overtime, so I said, 'Here goes nothing.' So I just threw it up to him and he did a great job of making a play."

Here are a few more glimpses at what Morris did Saturday:

  • He threw for 271 first-quarter yards. Only three FBS players have thrown for more yards in a quarter since 2004. Morris’ 287 yards in the first half were more than his total in three of the first four games this season.

  • Morris threw five touchdown passes, tying five other Miami players for the single-game school record. The last Miami quarterback to throw five touchdown passes in a game was Kyle Wright at Wake Forest in 2005. Morris’ previous career high was two touchdowns, which he had recorded twice in his career.

  • Morris had seven passes that went for 40 or more yards, including two touchdowns -- the game winner to Dorsett and a 76-yarder to Rashawn Scott in the first quarter. Morris went into the game with four total passes that went 40 yards or more in four previous games.

To be sure, Morris was not perfect. His only interception of the day came in the end zone, and the offense failed at various times to take advantage of all the NC State mistakes. But with the game on the line, Morris delivered when it mattered most, the way he did last week against the Jackets.

Morris has now thrown for 1,002 yards combined in the past two weeks to move him into the No. 1 spot in the ACC in passing, averaging 327 yards per game. Given all the returning talent at quarterback going into this season, did anybody out there predict that Morris would be on top?