It appears Miami didn’t have much respect for Pitt last season.
“It was a team which we expected to go in and blow them out and win,” senior offensive lineman Tyree St. Louis said Tuesday of the 24-14 loss at Heinz Field in the No. 2 Hurricanes’ final regular-season game.
“We had faced bigger and better opponents and we had fought until the last second. The Pitt game was the main thing that stopped us.
“In no one’s mind we thought we would lose the Pitt game, but we didn’t prepare like that. So when we did lose, it kind of shocked us and set us back, saying ‘we are vulnerable, we can be beat.’
“It doesn’t matter who we beat before. If we don’t come in the game with the same mindset as past games, we are going to lose, which we did.”
After losing to Pitt, Miami ended the season on a three-game losing streak with losses to No. 1 Clemson, 38-3, in the ACC Championship Game and No. 6 Wisconsin, 34-24, in the Orange Bowl.
“We learned to just keep our foot on the gas and take nothing for granted,” senior offensive lineman Tyler Gauthier said. “We thought we were riding high, we were 10-0. We can’t do that, we got to go out there and play every game like it’s our last game and I think that’s what we’re going to do this year.”
Miami, ranked No. 8 in the Associated Press preseason poll, opens its season Sunday against No. 25 LSU at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
Jerry DiPaola is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Jerry at [email protected] or via Twitter @JDiPaola_Trib.