3 Miami football players ranked top 20 in ACC by national website

Nov 12, 2022; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports
Nov 12, 2022; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports /

National college football analysts Chris Hummer who wrote the article, Blake Brockermeyer and Robbie Weinstein of  247 Sports ranked “From 20 to 1: Ranking the best players in the ACC.” Miami football players, center Matt Lee is 20th, followed by defensive tackle Leonard Taylor who is 17th and safety Kamren Kinchens sixth.

Lee and Kinchens represented the Miami football program with quarterback Tyler Van Dyke and head coach Mario Cristobal at ACC Kickoff on Tuesday in Charlotte. Lee, Kinchens and Taylor have all received accolades throughout this summer ahead of the 2023 season. All three will likely be candidates for preseason All-ACC.

Lee transferred to Miami and will play under new offensive coordinator Shannon Dawson in 2023. Dawson brings a modified version of the Air Raid. Miami has completely overhauled its offensive line. In addition to Lee, Miami added Alabama transfer Javion Cohen and 2023 five-star OTs Francis Mauigoa and Samson Okunlola.

Kinchens was an All-American in 2022. Taylor has the potential to be an All-American in 2023. New defensive coordinator Lance Guidry brings an aggressive style to Miami in 2023. The Hurricanes will have several new starters on defense in 2023. Kinchens and Taylor provide a good foundation for Guidry.

"20. MATT LEE, C, MIAMI“Miami needed to beef up its offensive line this offseason and did so in a big way by adding a pair of four-star transfers and a duo of five-star recruits to the unit. And while several of those players are likely to start this season, you could argue the lynchpin of the group will be Lee.The UCF transfer finished the 2022 season as PFF’s third-highest-graded center, capping off a Knights career that saw him play nearly 2,800 snaps. Lee should be an anchor in the middle of Miami’s line and a steading presence for a line that should take a huge step forward.”"

Expect Taylor to have a bigger role in 2023. Entering his junior season, the expectations for Taylor are high as an anchor on the Miami defense. Pro Football Focus projects Taylor as the second-best interior defensive line prospect for the 2024 NFL Draft. Taylor has widely been praised for his athleticism at his size.

"17. LEONARD TAYLOR, DT, MIAMI“Like a few other players on this list, Taylor is somewhat of a projection. But the former five-star recruit seems like a safe projection to make after a stellar sophomore season. Taylor finished with an efficient 24 tackles (10 1/2 for loss), three sacks and an interception in just 329 snaps.He didn’t play as many reps as some other players, but his PFF grade (87.3) was among the best in the Power Five for interior defenders. An athletic exception for someone his size, Taylor has all the makings of a future early-round draft pick if he can keep his same level of production with an uptick in snaps this year."

Kinchens was the biggest bright spot for the Miami football program in 2022. Kinchens is the first All-American returning to Miami since 2006. Hummer highlighted the accomplishments of Kinchens in 2022 and what he needs to improve on in 2023 to potentially be a first-round pick in the 2024 NFL Draft.

"6. KAMREN KINCHENS, SAF, MIAMI“Kinchens is the top safety in college football. He led all FBS safeties last season with six interceptions to go along with 59 tackles, including 1 1/2 for loss. One half of the top safety tandem in college football alongside James Williams, Kinchens is the ball-hawing center fielder of the duo.If Kinchens can improve a bit as a tackler (he missed 14 last season), he’ll be in the mix to be a Day 1 pick in 2024.”"

Next. Pro Football Focus ranks Miami DL 9th nationally. dark

Lee has quickly emerged as a leader on the Miami offensive line. Kinchens appeared as a leader in 2022 following a disappointing season. With Lee leading the newcomers and Kinchens and Taylor the top returnees for the Miami football team on defense, the Hurricanes should significantly improve during the 2023 season.