The Miami Hurricanes have had more than their fair share of defensive struggles in 2012. They've allowed an average of 34.7 points per game, ranking them 103rd in the FBS. They're giving up an average of 510 yards per game, split almost perfectly between passing yards (1556 total so far) and rushing yards (1504).
They're allowing opponents to convert 45% of their third downs, and they have trouble getting off the field. Combine that with the speed of Miami's offense, and opponents have controlled time of possession for an average of more than 35 minutes per game.
SB Nation's Miami blog State of the U has taken an in-depth look at the Hurricanes' defensive situation:
Like any other Hurricanes fan out there, I'd like [defensive coordinator Mark] D'Onofrio to dictate the terms to opposing offenses. Blitz more often and more creatively, put the DBs closer than 10 yards off the line of scrimmage. But the reality is this defense is simply too young across the board, and is going to get burned, one way or another. This is oversimplifying things, but what D'Onofrio seems to be doing is playing a version of a Prevent/Bend But Don't Break scheme, but for the entire game. This is presumably done in the hopes of turnovers and/or unforced mistakes by the offense having to drive the length of the field.
State of the U's conclusion amounts to a defense of D'Onofrio, so head over and check out the full post.
The Hurricanes next face the North Carolina Tar Heels, and they'll have to contend with Bryn Renner and the Tar Heels offense, which is averaging 44 points per game. There are debates to be had about D'Onofrio and the Miami defense, but there's no doubt they'll be tested on Saturday.