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OFFBEAT : 'CANES `D' RETURNS TO ROOTS.

Prior to Saturday's games, the Miami defense was ranked in the nation's top five in three categories: first in pass efficiency defense (allowing 220 yards and no touchdowns in three games); second in scoring defense (13 points in three games); and fifth in total defense (an average of 168.3 yards per game).

And, Miami was 16th in the nation in turnover margin - forcing 10 turnovers while losing just five.

Really, after last year, they could only get better. And they did. After 1995's disastrous 1-3 start - a collapse that included allowing UCLA to rush for 256 yards in the season opener, and allowing Florida State a whopping 495 yards of total offense - Miami improved, but slowly.

Halftime barbecue

A fire broke out in the old Sports Arena on the Auburn campus, sending flames and smoke over the northeast corner of Jordan-Hare Stadium, but nobody in the stadium for Saturday's LSU-Auburn game was in danger.

The 25,000-square-foot, all-wood Sports Arena, built in the late 1940s, appeared to be completely engulfed in flames soon after kickoff in front of more than 85,000 at the stadium.

The building is located across the street from the stadium, about 50 yards away.

As the second quarter started, flames shot about 30 feet in the air and were visible to anyone sitting on the west side of the stadium.

Firefighters from Auburn and surrounding communities were at the scene. Campus police and fire officials said they were too busy to give immediate details. There were no immediately reported injuries, and Auburn Sports Information Director Kent Partridge said no people were in the burning building when the fire broke out.

The public address announcer at the stadium repeatedly assured the crowd that nobody was in danger.

Partridge said no other structures, including the stadium, appeared to be in danger.

University relations executive director Peter Pepinsky said the old building was first used as an airplane hangar after World War II, then was converted into an arena for basketball.

CAPTION(S):

Photo

Photo: ``This ain't Peyton Place; it's the Wuerffel House''

QB-comparison sign displayed by a Florida fan Saturday, touting Gators quarterback Danny Wuerffel over Tennessee's Peyton Manning
COPYRIGHT 1996 Daily News
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1996, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

Article Details
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Title Annotation:SPORTS
Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Sep 22, 1996
Words:363
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