Miami Hurricanes head coach Manny Diaz ranked ACC fourth best

Dec 5, 2020; Durham, North Carolina, USA; Mandatory Credit: Nell Redmond-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 5, 2020; Durham, North Carolina, USA; Mandatory Credit: Nell Redmond-USA TODAY Sports /

Miami Hurricanes head coach Manny Diaz has started his career as a head coach with a 14-10 record. The Hurricanes improved from 6-7 during Diaz’s first season in 2019 to 8-3 in 2020. Miami enters the 2021 season with high expectations with 19 returning starters. The Sporting News ranked Diaz the ACC’s fourth-best coach.

Being competitive and winning big games will elevate Diaz into third. The top two head coaches in the ACC are obvious. Dabo Swinney of Clemson and Mack Brown of North Carolina are the only coaches in the ACC who have won National Championships. Diaz was the defensive coordinator at Texas under Brown.

Diaz’s .583 winning percentage ranks seventh in the ACC. Diaz is one of a few ACC head coaches that has only led programs at a Power Five school. Swinney, Brown and Dave Doerner of North Carolina State were the coaches ranked ahead of Diaz. The Miami Hurricanes defeated the NC State in Raleigh in 2020.

The Miami Hurricanes play at the Wolfpack again in 2021. Doeren was ranked 29th overall on the list of the best coaches nationally by The Sporting News, Diaz 31st. Swinney was second overall only behind Nick Saban of Alabama. Brown was 10th. Swinney had a career record of 140-33. Brown is 259-132 all-time.

"“There is a case to be made for Miami’s Manny Diaz as the third-best coach in the conference, but the blowout losses to Clemson and North Carolina showed the Hurricanes are a little closer to the rest of the conference.Miami is 2-3 against ranked teams the last two seasons, and Diaz starts the season with the test of all tests against Alabama.”"

The early legacy for Diaz will largely be determined by how Miami plays against Alabama. Miami keeping it close would earn Diaz and the Miami football program respect on a national stage. The losses to Clemson and North Carolina in 2020 were embarrassing. Miami has to forget those games and play well this season.

Miami was able to rally after falling behind 21-0 to Oklahoma State in the Cheez-It Bowl last season in a 37-34 loss. The Hurricanes have to get off to a good start against Alabama. If Miami falls behind 21-0 against the Crimson Tide they will likely be buried. Diaz has also improved the Miami recruiting.

Next. Miami recruiting and Manny Diaz supported by Manny Diaz. dark

The Hurricanes signed the 17th best class in 2020 during the first full recruiting cycle under Diaz. Miami added the 11th best class in 2021. If those players develop to their rankings coming out of high school, Miami should continue to improve in the next few seasons under Diaz. Development is the key to Miami’s future success.