The Miami football team began a stretch of four out of five games versus teams with new head coaches that began with their 20-14 win over Virginia Tech last Saturday. Miami plays Duke and Virginia in the next two weeks. The Blue Devils and Cavaliers have first-year head coaches.
Mario Cristobal was the highest-profile head coach out of the four new hires in the ACC Coastal Division for the 2022 season. The other three new head coaches in the Coastal to begin the 2022 season are Mike Elko at Duke, Tony Elliott at Virginia and Brent Pry at Virginia Tech. Georgia Tech fired Geoff Collins after a 1-3 2022 start.
Brent Key is the interim head coach at Georgia Tech. The Miami football team hosts Duke on Saturday, plays at Virginia on October 29 and travels to Atlanta to play Georgia Tech on November 12. Duke has surprised in its inaugural season under Elko at 1-3. Georgia Tech has rebounded well winning its last two under Key.
Virginia has started 2-4 overall and 0-3 in the ACC this season. Following its loss to Miami, Virginia Tech is 2-5 overall and 1-3 in the ACC. The biggest test for the Miami football team of the other four Coastal division teams with new head coaches will likely be Duke. Duke has gotten off to their 4-3 start with an elite rushing offense.
Duke is second in the ACC
. The Blue Devils top the ACC in conference games averaging 229.0 rushing yards per game. Duke has averaged over four yards per carry in every game this season except for their loss at Kansas. Miami is
The Miami defense was dominant versus Virginia Tech through the first three quarters before the Hokies rallied in the fourth to cut the deficit to 20-14. Miami was able to put the game away on their final drive with two first downs to end it. Elko and Pry both were both defensive coordinators before being hired as head coaches.
Elko was first a defensive coordinator at the Division III Merchant Marine Academy in 2001. The first FBS defensive coordinator job for Elko was at Bowling Green from 2009 through 2013. Elko left the Falcons to become the defensive coordinator at Wake Forest from 2014 through 2016. Elko was at Texas A&M before Duke.
Pry was previously at Penn State where he worked with current Miami offensive coordinator Josh Gattis. Gattis and Pry worked together at Penn State and Vanderbilt under Nittany Lions’ head coach James Franklin. Gattis came to Miami after three years as the OC at Michigan under Jim Harbaugh.
Elliott and Key have offensive backgrounds. Elliott spent 11 seasons at Clemson under Dabo Swinney before being hired as the head coach at Virginia. From 2015 through 2021, Elliott was Clemson’s co or sole offensive coordinator. Virginia has regressed offensive from last season. Virginia is 10th in the ACC in total offense.
Key was at Central Florida from 2005 through 2015 before spending three seasons as the offensive line coach at Alabama. Key was the assistant head coach and OL coach for Georgia Tech since Collins was hired in 2019. Georgia Tech defeated Pittsburgh and Duke in the two games with Key as the head coach.
Including the game against Virginia Tech, Miami will be the favorite in all four games versus the ACC teams with new head coaches this season. Miami needs to win those games to get back into the race to win the final season of the Coastal Division. Miami won its only outright ACC Coastal title in 2017.