Miami football defensive players remaining pre Mario Cristobal

Sep 10, 2022; Miami Gardens, Florida, Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 10, 2022; Miami Gardens, Florida, Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports /

The Miami football program has 12 defensive players remaining on the roster that preceded Mario Cristobal. Cristobal has remade the Miami coaching staff and roster during the 2023 off-season. Over 20 players overall transferred out of Miami and nine new defensive transfers are on the Hurricanes 2023 roster.

Cornerback Te’Cory Couch, Defensive tackles, Jared Harrison-Hunte and Leonard Taylor III, edge rushers Jahfari Harvey and Chantz Williams, linebackers Corey Flagg, Jr., Ryan Ragone, Chase Smith and Keontra Smith and safeties Brian Balom, Kamren Kinchens and James Williams all preceded Cristobal.

Couch has played 48 games with 22 starts over the last four seasons. Entering the 2023 season Couch projects as the slot CB or could potentially play star. Couch has 118 tackles, five TFLs, 1.5 sacks, one forced fumble, 18 passes defended and one interception throughout his Miami career.

Harrison-Hunte and Taylor have been key contributors and multi-year starters for the Miami football program. Harrison-Hunte has played in 27 games and started 11 in his three seasons with Miami. Taylor has played in 21 games with nine starts in two years. Taylor had the potential to be an All-American in 2023.

Harvey has started 38 games and started 13 in four seasons with Miami. Harvey has improved his numbers each season with Miami, recording 76 tackles, 19.5 tackles for loss, 9.5 sacks one forced fumble, three pass breakups and one interception that he returned for a TD. Williams has played in 27  games as a backup in the last three years.

Flagg has played in 31 games in three seasons with 21 starts. As a sophomore in 2021, Flagg led Miami with 60 tackles. Ragone was originally a walk-on who earned a scholarship and has played in nine games in his Miami career. Chase Smith had played in only 15 games in two seasons. Keontra Smith has been a frequent starter.

Keontra Smith has played in 39 games with seven starts in four seasons with Miami. Smith contributed 95 tackles, 10 tackles for loss, 4.5 sacks, one forced fumble two pass breakups and one interception. Smith has moved between safety, striker/star and linebacker. Expect Smith to be a backup in 2023.

Balom, Kinchens and James Williams have all been starters and key contributors throughout their Miami careers. Balom played in 10 games with one start in 2020 as a true freshman. After missing all of the 2021 season with an injury, Balom played in 11 games in 2022, primarily on special teams. Balom projects as a backup in 2023.

Kinchens has played in all 24 games during his Miami career with 17 starts. Kinchens has 103 tackles, 2.5 TFLs, two forced fumbles, 16 pass breakups and six interceptions with one return for a TD. After a breakout season in 2022, Kinchens was named to multiple All-American teams.

Williams was more highly touted than Kinchens when they signed in the 2021 class. As a five-star signee, a lot was expected from Williams. In three seasons, Williams has played 21 games with 17 starts. Williams has 89 tackles, 1.5 TFLs, one forced fumble, 11 passes defended and three interceptions.

Miami remaining offensive players pre Mario Cristobal. dark. Next

With only 23 players remaining on the Miami roster entering the 2023 season, Cristobal has turned over nearly three-quarters of the Hurricanes’ personnel since being hired. Cristobal has clearly sent a message that he wants players who will work hard and have a passion for the Miami football program.