Miami football ESPN FPI wins at 7.9 questioned by national media outlet

LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY - SEPTEMBER 19: (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY - SEPTEMBER 19: (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /

The Miami football team has their won-loss total set at 7.9 and 4.4 according to the ESPN Football Power Index. With a season-opening game against Alabama at Mercedes Benz Stadium in Atlanta on September 4 and at North Carolina on October 16, the Hurricanes face a challenging schedule.

The rest of the Miami football schedule has challenges. The Hurricanes host Group of Five Power Appalachian State and Michigan State before they finish their non-conference schedule against FCS Central Connecticut State. Miami begins ACC play when they host Virginia on September 30.

Miami also hosts Georgia Tech, North Carolina State and Virginia Tech in 2021 with games at Duke, Florida State and Pittsburgh. Miami is ranked higher in the FPI than every opponent in 2021 except Alabama and North Carolina. The Hurricanes are set up to make a run similar to their 2020 season.

Miami returns 19 starters in 2021 led by quarterback D‘Eriq King. King should be a Heisman Trophy and all-American candidate and compete to earn All-ACC. Transfers, defensive end DeAndre Johnson, wide receiver Charleston Rambo and cornerback Tyrique Stevenson will be key players for Miami in 2021.

"“The Hurricanes must get D’Eriq King 100% healthy to challenge in the ACC Coastal. The opening game vs. Alabama is a mammoth showdown for the ACC…Could the Hurricanes take a step back this season? Eight wins might be the ceiling for Miami, per ESPN’s FPI projection.The Hurricanes are no longer the favorite to win the ACC’s Coastal Division and the schedule features several matchups against preseason nationally-ranked competition.”"

North Carolina will be the favorite in the ACC Coastal with Miami projected second. Brad Crawford of 247 Sports questioned if Miami will take a step back this season while examining the “Takeaways from ESPN’s FPI Top 25 summer rankings.” If Miami does not reach eight wins Manny Diaz could be in trouble.

Reports earlier this season reported that the Hurricanes have to win eight games this season to continue to show development and keep Diaz’s job safe. It seems like Miami will win at least eight with the ceiling being 10 victories. Any more than two losses to anyone other than Alabama and UNC would be troubling.

Miami is likely to win at least nine games this season. The Hurricanes won all the games they were expected to in 2020. Blowout losses to Clemson and North Carolina and a slow start against Oklahoma State in the Cheez-It Bowl were troubling, but Miami won the games they were expected to win.

Next. Miami football future can be impacted by D'Eriq King health. dark

Defeating Alabama would be a major upset win for Miami. North Carolina is likely to be a significant favorite against Miami in Chapel Hill. It would be surprising for Miami to be an underdog in any other game in 2021. Alabama and North Carolina are the only two Top 25 FPI teams on Miami’s 2021 schedule.