Miami Hurricanes safety Bubba Bolden who chose to return for the 2021 season when he could have entered the NFL Draft. Bolden is likely to be one of the leaders of a mostly experienced Miami defense in 2021. Bolden led Miami with 74 tackles in 2020. Bolden spoke to reporters after spring pratice on Monday.
The Miami Hurricanes began spring practice on Monday and Bolden was one of four players who spoke to reporters via zoom. Bolden told reporters Miami should be motivted with the 2021 season opener against Alabama on September 5. This will be the third time in the last four seasons Miami opens against an SEC team.
Miami began the 2019 season with a 24-20 loss to Florida in Orlando and lost 33-7 to LSU in Arlington, Texas in the 2018 season opener. Miami won their 2020 season opener 31-14 against UAB. The 2021 season opener is on a whole different level from recent years and Bolden wants to keep his teammates focused.
Bolden also spoke about the depth the Miami Hurricanes have returning at safety. In addition to Bolden, senior Amari Carter and junior Gurvan Hall return. Bolden knows that when they play Alabama the Crimson Tide has the depth to continue to rotate players into the game. Miami has to be ready and alert.
"“I mean that’s Game 1, that’s what I say to the guys every day: Bama, first game,’ Whenever things get tough, think ‘Bama.’ I mean that’s Game 1, that’s what I say to the guys every day: Bama, first game,’ Whenever things get tough, think ‘Bama.’ the task at hand right now’’ is “learning the new plays,But at the end of the day, always in the back of your head you think, ‘Alabama.’ That’s prime time right there. There is no stable spot, no starters, no this, no that…We are so deep at a lot of positions with everybody coming back. Whoever is that guy when Alabama comes, there’s another guy behind him, too.So much potential. So much. We came out and showed good effort today. I’m just trying to be a leader of the defense, but I want everybody on the team to be a leader — you feel me? That’s what we’re trying to build over here.’’Courtesy Miami Herald"
This spring is critical for the Miami defense with the entire staff in new positions. Jess Simpson returned as the defensive line coach. Ishmael Aristide was hired as the strikers coach, Jonathan Patke switches from strikers to coaching inside linebackers and Travaris Robinson is the new defensive backs coach.
De Marcus Van Dyke will work under Robinson as the cornerbacks coach. One of the biggest changes is head coach Manny Diaz re-assuming the role of defensive coordinator. Diaz was the DC for Miami from 2016-18 before being elevated to head coach. Safeties have thrived in the Diaz defense.