Grant Hughes of 247 Sports examined “ACC football: Ranking teams by returning starters, overall production in 2023.” The list includes past production by returning players and transfers added during the offseason. The Miami football team returns almost all of its production at quarterback.
Miami has rebuilt nearly its entire offensive line. The five starting OL in the 2023 season opener against Miami (Ohio) will be completely different than the five starters upfront versus Pittsburgh in the final game of the 2022 season. Center Matt Lee and guard Javion Cohen will anchor the Miami OL as transfers in 2023.
Five-star true freshmen Francis Mauigoa and Samson Okunlola are expected to be key contributors to the 2023 Miami OL. Mauigoa is a projected starter. Miami should have one of the most improved OLs in the country in 2023. The addition of new offensive coordinator Shannon Dawson should help Miami improve.
Lance Guidry arrives as the new defensive coordinator for Miami with a good corps of returning players. Miami has added to the interior of the defensive line through the portal. Leonard Taylor has the potential for an All-American season for Miami at DT. Hughes summarized the returning production for the Miami football team.
"4. MIAMI HURRICANESReturning Starters: 12 | Offense: 5 | Defense: 7Tyler Van Dyke is back under center and looks to rebound from a lackluster 2022, marred by a recurring shoulder injury. The offensive line should help keep him healthy, too.Starters Zion Nelson and Jalen Rivers are back at left tackle and right guard, respectively, and the Hurricanes built around them with two transfers and 5-star talent Francis Mauigoa, who could be a day-one starter at right tackle.Safety Karen Kinchens is Miami’s first All-American to return on defense since 2006, but the Hurricanes have to replace both starting cornerbacks from last season.Improvement along the defensive line will be key next season, and the Hurricanes return six players who notched over 2.0 sacks a season ago, including team leaders Akheem Mesidor (7.0) and Jahfari Harvey (5.5)"
Van Dyke, Nelson, Rivers, Francis Mauigoa, Kinchens and Mesidor will all be key players for the Miami football team in 2023. Van Dyke seems better suited to the offense run by Dawson than predecessor Josh Gattis. Nelson and Rivers missed most of the 2022 season with injuries. Miami was significantly hindered by injuries in 2022.
Miami has the foundation for an excellent defensive line with Harvey and Mesidor projected as the starting edge rushers and Jared Harrison-Hunte and Taylor at DT. Mario Cristobal and his staff have done an exceptional job improving the talent and turning the roster over. Miami should improve production in Cristobal’s second year.