Miami football will open season with John Campbell or Jalen Rivers at LT

MIAMI, FLORIDA - NOVEMBER 23:. (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images)
MIAMI, FLORIDA - NOVEMBER 23:. (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images) /

With Zion Nelson out for at least the season opener versus Bethune-Cookman, the Miami football team will likely begin the season with John Campbell or Jalen Rivers at left tackle. Multiple reporters have observed that Campbell and Rivers have shared LT during the first week of Miami training camp.

Nelson had knee surgery in July and is expected to be out for six to eight weeks. A return for the season opener would be an early return with a safer wait time for Nelson after Miami plays at Texas A&M on September 17. The realistic expectation should be that Nelson is back when Miami plays at Texas A&M.

Early in training camp Campbell has taken the majority of the snaps as the first-team LT with Rivers mostly taking the second-team reps per multiple reports. Offensive line coach Alex Mirabal has rotated the Miami linemen into different positions to increase the depth and versatility for the Hurricanes up front.

The rest of the Miami OL has primarily been Jakai Clark at center, Justice Oluwaseun and Logan Sagopolu at guard and veteran D.J. Scaife at right tackle. Clark has started for Miami in his career at center and guard. Scaife has started at right guard and both tackle positions during his Miami football career.

If Campbell remains the starting LT to begin the season expect Rivers to start at LG to allow Miami to put the five best OL on the field. Campbell has played in 15 games and made four starts in his Miami career after redshirting as a freshman in 2018. Campbell missed the 2021 season after ACL surgery.

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Rivers missed all but three games in 2021 after his own knee injury. After playing in seven games as a true freshman in 2020, Rivers started the three games he played in 2021. Miami has added depth during the 2022 offseason with the additions of Jonathan Denis and Sagapolu as transfers from Oregon.