When the Hurricanes lost a stunner at Pittsburgh this past Friday, almost everyone with a vested interest in the team left their playoff chances for dead. Even head coach, Mark Richt and defensive coordinator, Manny Diaz, took to twitter after the game to express their disappointment and how their focus had shifted to winning the ACC.
Since that loss though, national opinion has changed on the Miami Hurricanes chances. This game coming up vs Clemson on Saturday night has become a win and your in scenario for both teams. A de facto national quarterfinal game. With Clemson expected to be named the new number 1 team in the country in tonights new standings, a win for Miami would mean a win over the top ranked team in the country to go along with the ACC title. That would be enough to get the job done.
So how does that loss against Pitt help Miami? Well first off, it gave them a taste of what a season ending loss would feel like. And once you have that taste, you never want it again. A loss like that can help re focus a team and its goals.
Which brings me to my second point, resetting mentally. Sports in general are just as much mental as they are physical. And when you see the one thing you have worked for all season long seemingly slip away, only to come back to you once again for a second chance, it can make you feel like you have a new lease on life. It could very well be that this team took Pitt for granted, they got cocky and use to winning. Sometimes you need a reality check to reset your way of thinking.
A loss like that could end up being just what the doctor ordered in preparing for Clemson and a possible rebirth in the college football playoff.