Miami football drops below UNC in CFP rankings costing them Orange Bowl

Sep 7, 2019; Chapel Hill, NC, USA; Mandatory Credit: Nell Redmond-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 7, 2019; Chapel Hill, NC, USA; Mandatory Credit: Nell Redmond-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Miami football team dropped to 18th in the College Football Playoff rankings essentially eliminating them from the Orange Bowl.

The 62-26 loss to North Carolina on Saturday likely cost the Miami football team a spot in the Orange Bowl. North Carolina moved up two spots to 15th to become the third highest-ranked team in the ACC behind second-ranked Notre Dame and third-ranked Clemson in the CFP rankings.

If Clemson defeats Notre Dame in the ACC Championship on Saturday the Tigers and Fighting Irish will earn berths in the College Football Playoff. North Carolina would earn the berth in the Orange Bowl. If Notre Dame wins Saturday Clemson would likely earn the Orange Bowl berth and be eliminated from the College Football Playoff.

Miami dropped to a season-low 18th in the College Football Playoff rankings. The Hurricanes premiered at number 10 in the CFP this season in week 13. Miami stayed at 10 through the first three CFP rankings until this week. This season was the first time Miami has been in the CFP since 2017.

With the Orange Bowl not likely a possibility, Miami will likely be selected for the Cheez-it-bowl in Orlando with the Gator Bowl a possibility. The Hurricanes last played in the postseason in Orlando following the 2016 season when they defeated West Virginia in the Champs Sports Bowl that is now the Cheez-it Bowl.

Miami will have a chance to close the season with a victory for the first time since 2016. The win over West Virginia is the Hurricanes’ only bowl victory since 2006. Miami head coach Manny Diaz has repeatedly spoken about goals and that the Hurricanes can still reach some of those in 2020.

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Finishing ranked in the top 15 to 20 and winning a bowl game are within reach. A 9-2 finish to the 2020 season with wins in six of their final seven games would be a huge improvement over 6-7 and three straight losses to end the 2019 season over teams Miami was expected to beat. Miami is expected to have a top 10 signing class.