Miami football one of two ACC teams with legitimate chance at CFP title

3 Jan 2002:. DIGITAL IMAGE. Mandatory Credit: Harry How/Getty Images
3 Jan 2002:. DIGITAL IMAGE. Mandatory Credit: Harry How/Getty Images /
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"Miami (+6000) If (x2) … there’s explosive growth at the QB position. We’re counting this twice because Miami is starting from so far behind. Malik Rosier struggled mightily late in 2017, then alternated between struggling and getting benched in favor of N’Kosi Perry in 2018. Unfortunately, Perry wasn’t any better. New QBs coach and offensive coordinator Dan Enos arrives from Alabama tasked with either coaxing massive improvement out of Perry or handing the reins to Ohio State transfer Tate Martell or redshirt freshman Jarren Williams. If Miami is merely decent at QB, that makes this team’s ceiling infinitely higher."

Connelly states Miami needs someone to manage the offense at this point. Perry has not shown the ability to do that yet. Martell and Williams haven’t gotten the chance. Diaz and offensive coordinator and QB coach Dan Enos have started throughout the offseason Martell is the most intense and has the best grasp of the offense.

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"If … the offensive line plays its part this time. A solid quarterback, handing to DeeJay Dallas and throwing to Jeff Thomas, Buffalo transfer K.J. Osborn, tight end Brevin Jordan and maybe a blue-chip freshman or two? That sounds tantalizing. But it works only if the line actually holds up. It was mediocre at best in 2018 (74th in stuff rate, 77th in sack rate) and now has to replace five of the seven players who started at least five games. New coaching, plus the addition of sought-after Butler grad transfer Tommy Kennedy, could help, but how much?"

Miami Hurricanes Football
Miami Hurricanes Football /

Miami Hurricanes Football

The offense for Miami was a huge Achilles heel in the three years of the Mark Richt era. Connelly goes deep into the metrics to show the ineptness of the Hurricanes offensive line in 2018. The traditional stats paint the same picture. Miami was a mediocre 59th with 2.08 sacks allowed per game in 2018.

That’s not good enough with four-star signees on the offensive line. The only offensive linemen that lived up to their recruiting rankings were 2018 right tackle Delone Scaife and 2017 OL Navaughn Donaldson. Both shuffled between guard and center in 2018. They will start in 2019. but where?

Corey Gaynor at center is the only other player that seems sure to start on the Miami offensive line in 2019. Several other players are competing for the other two positions up front.

"“If … the defensive line unearths a new playmaker or two. Again, some ifs are more likely to come to fruition than others. Given head coach Manny Diaz’s track record, we can assume this one’s probably fine. It still needs to happen, though. In end Joe Jackson and tackle Gerald Willis III, Miami loses two linemen who combined for 32.5 tackles for loss, 13 sacks and six passes defensed last season. End Jonathan Garvin is back, and between veterans (end Scott Patchan, tackle Pat Bethel), transfers (Virginia Tech’s Trevon Hill in particular) and youngsters (tackle Nesta Jade Silvera), there are certainly breakthrough candidates.”"

Under Manny Diaz, the defensive line has continually retooled and restocked up front. Garvin showed he is a force as a sophomore last season. It would be a shock if he did not continue to progress and didn’t have a season good enough to leave for the 2020 NFL Draft.