Mario Cristobal was 10-3 in non-conference games at Oregon. Two of those losses occurred in bowl games. The sole regular-season non-conference loss under Mario Cristobal at Oregon was a 27-21 defeat to Auburn in the 2019 season opener. Auburn quarterback Bo Nix is now the starter at Oregon.
The only other regular season non-conference game Oregon played under Cristobal versus a Power Five team was a 35-28 win at number three Ohio State in the second week of 2021. A victory over Fresno State in the 2021 opener was the only other regular season non-conference one-score game for Oregon under Cristobal.
Oregon won all four of its games against Group of Five programs and the three played versus FCS teams in their four seasons under Cristobal. When Miami hired Cristobal part of the expectations is that games like the 45-31 loss to Middle Tennessee State on Saturday would be behind them.
The Blue Raiders’ win at Hard Rock Stadium was reminiscent of 2019 Miami losses to FIU at Marlins Park and in the Independence Bowl to Louisiana Tech about a month later. In between the losses to FIU and Louisiana Tech, Miami lost its 2019 regular-season finale to near perennial ACC cellar dweller Duke.
Cristobal made his Oregon debut as interim head coach in a 38-28 loss to Boise State in the 2017 Las Vegas Bowl. That would be the only loss to a Group of Five team for Oregon under Cristobal. Losing to Boise State which has arguably been the best Group of Five team for 20 years is different than losing to Middle Tennessee State.
Oregon defeated Michigan State7-6 in the 2018 Red Box and Wisconsin in the Rose Bowl following the 2019 season before losing to Iowa State in the Fiesta Bowl after the 2020 season. The loss to the Cyclones was the last bowl game coached by Cristobal during his tenure at Oregon.
Miami concluded 2022 non-conference play with a 2-2 record. After wins over Bethune-Cookman and Southern Mississippi to begin the 2022 season, the Hurricanes lost at Texas A&M 17-9 last week. The loss at Texas A&M against the fourth most talented roster in college football was slightly encouraging.
Miami has been dominated in recent years against more talented teams. The effort against Texas A&M was encouraging. Miami took a huge step backward in the loss to Middle Tennessee State. These losses have become far too frequent for the Miami football program under multiple head coaches.