Kamren Kinchens only Miami football player in ESPN Top 100

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 /

Safety Kamren Kinchens is the only Miami football player named in ESPN’s College football’s top 100 players for 2023.”  Kinchens being the only player in the ESPN Top 100 is somewhat surprising. Center Matt Lee and defensive tackle Leonard Taylor have received multiple 2023 preseason accolades.

Kinchens as the 58th-ranked player is also surprising. Several outlets including ESPN named Kinchens as a preseason All-American. Often lists within the same company have different criteria and analysts and writers conduct the rankings. The Associated Press and The Sporting News named Kinchens a 2022 First Team All-American.

Kinchens has carried the mantle for the Miami football program following a 5-7 2022 season. After being completely left out of the AP Preseason Poll, the Miami football team as a whole and the players individually have a lot to prove. Guard Javion Cohen, Lee and Taylor should finish 2023 in the top 100 players nationally.

Miami also needs James Williams to live up to his five-star status as a prospect next to Kinchens at safety. Kinchens is the leader of the Miami defense on and off the field. With another big season in 2022, Kinchens has the potential to become 2024 NFL first round draft pick. ESPN summarized Kinchens’ 2022 season.

"58. Kam KinchensS, Miami, junior: Notable 2022 stats: 6 INT, 6 PBU, 59 tackles, 1 FF: 2022 ranking: NR“Kinchens had a breakout season in 2022, winning All-ACC honors after starting all 12 games. He finished with a team-high six interceptions, and he also led the Hurricanes with 59 total tackles. He has a sense for where the ball will be at all times, and his presence in the secondary is one that forces opposing offenses to try and scheme around him.”"

Kinchens has been a consistent performer for Miami after playing in all 12 games and starting five as a true freshman in 2021. Kinchens had 44 tackles, one tackle for loss, one forced fumble and four pass breakups in 2021. In addition to the stats posted by ESPN, Kinchens had 12 PBUs, one TFL and one forced fumble in 2022.

Under new defensive coordinator Lance Guidry in a more aggressive defense, Kinchens could exceed his numbers from 2022 in 2023. Kinchens has a chance to break into the top 10 all-time in career interceptions at Miami. Whitey Campbell and Ronnie Lippett are currently tied for 10th in Miami history with 10 interceptions.

If Miami is going to improve significantly in 2023, they will need more than Kinchens to be a top 100 player. Kinchens was ranked the 25th best player nationally by Pro Football Focus. Taylor didn’t make PFF’s top 50 players, but they ranked him the fifth best returning interior defensive lineman.

Next. Kamren Kinchens named ESPN preseason All-American. dark

Kinchens was second and Williams fourth among the best returning safeties in college football. Nine Miami players were named first or second team PFF All-ACC. Although Kinchens was the only Miami player ranked among the top players in college football by ESPN and PFF, the Hurricanes have talent to succeeed in 2023.