National website projects Miami football Cotton Bowl berth

AT&T Stadium in Arlington, TexasAtt StadiumSyndication: CorpusChristi
AT&T Stadium in Arlington, TexasAtt StadiumSyndication: CorpusChristi /

The Miami football program enters its inaugural season under head coach Mario Cristobal with high expectations. Cristobal returning home as the prodigal son faces a challenging schedule. Miami has games at Texas A&M on September 17 and Clemson on November 19. Miami is projected to make the Cotton Bowl from 247 Sports.

Brad Crawford projects Miami to play Houston at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. The Hurricanes have not played in a New Year’s Six Bowl game since losing in the Orange Bowl to Wisconsin in 2017. Miami has not won a bowl game since defeating West Virginia in the Champs Sports Bowl in 2016.

The victory over the Mountaineers came in the first season under Mark Richt. Making the Cotton Bowl with the games at Clemson and Texas A&M will be a difficult task. If the Miami football team loses to the Aggies and Tigers, they would have to run the table in their remaining 10 games to earn a New Year’s Six Bowl.

Crawford projects the Hurricanes to play Houston in what could be termed the D’Eriq King Bowl for the quarterback who played for both programs. Houston finished 12-2 last season and shared the regular-season American Athletic Conference title with College Football Playoff team Cincinnati.

Tyler Van Dyke returns at quarterback to provide Cristobal with a foundational player on his roster. Miami has added seven transfers and the Hurricanes signed the 15th best class with most of the players pledging to Miami after Cristobal was hired. The Hurricanes return seven starters each on offense and defense.

"COTTON BOWLProjected matchup: Miami vs. Houston“Miami in the Cotton Bowl as a New Year’s Six at-large? With 10 wins, the Hurricanes could get there. That’s a stretch for first-year coach Mario Cristobal, but he inherits a roster that’s better than most in the ACC."

Playing Clemson late in the season will provide the Hurricanes a chance to develop under Cristobal and his staff before playing what should be the biggest game of the year for Miami. If Miami splits the games against Clemson and Texas A&M, the Hurricanes should be in a good position to make a run at a New Year’s Six Bowl game.

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Miami hosts Florida State, North Carolina and defending ACC Champion Pittsburgh. The Hurricanes have to travel to Virginia Tech. Duke, Miami, Virginia and Virginia Tech all hired new coaches entering 2022. This appears to be another year where Miami should be in the Coastal Division title race.