Dennis Dodd of CBS Sports included Miami in"These 10 college football teams can crack the top 25 rankings and make some noise in 2024." The focus from Dodd, including the Miami football team, was on the programs that ranked outside the CBS Sports Way Too Early Top 25.
The Way Too Early Top 25s for most, if not all of the major media outlets were posted before Cam Ward reversed his decision to enter the NFL Draft and transfer to Miami. The spring transfer portal window can also influence the Way Too Early Top 25. Teams will add and lose players in April.
Dodd posted his article on Wednesday and included Ward in his expectations for Miami. Virginia Tech is the only 2024 Miami opponent among the teams Dodd projects to crack the top 25. Iowa, Kentucky, USC, West Virginia and Wisconsin are the other Power Conference teams mentioned by Dodd.
The expanded College Football Playoff will create more intrigue in 2024. Dodd stated, "Somebody has to win the ACC." Clemson has lost its dominance over the ACC in the last few years. Florida State lost about 70 percent of its 2023 production. In year three under Mario Cristobal, a lot will be expected from Miami.
"10) Miami (Fla.)- Dennis Dodd, CBS Sports
In Year 3 under Mario Cristobal, it's not unrealistic to expect the Hurricanes to break through. Xavier Restrepo's return was huge, especially with Cam Ward transferring in. He can thrive behind a veteran offensive line. Redshirt sophomore Jacurri Brown threw for 181 yards in the bowl loss to Rutgers and stands as a nice depth piece. Running back Rodney Hill transferred in from Florida State with three years eligibility remaining. "
Ward completely changes the 2024 expectations for Miami. The return of Restrepo, who set a Miami record with 85 receptions last season and second leading receiving Jacolby George provides Ward with two go-to receivers. Brown will compete with Emory Williams to be the backup behind Ward.
Williams could potentially redshirt. Hill provides depth and experience at RB behind Mark Fletcher, Henry Parrish and Ajay Allen. Hill could also return kicks for Miami in 2024. Defensive lineman Rueben Bain and middle linebacker Francisco Mauigoa will anchor the Miami defense.
Miami needs to develop their secondary. Wesley Bissainthe will likely start next to Mauigoa at LB. The Hurricanes will be inexperienced at LB behind Bissainthe and Mauigoa. Miami opens the season on August 31 at Florida. Miami concludes non-conference play versus Florida A&M, Ball State and South Florida.