National CFB writer gives Mario Cristobal second-year grade

Tom Fornelli of CBS Sports grades Mario Cristobal and other "College football second-year coach grades: Kalen DeBoer earns 'A+' mark, Billy Napier gets 'D'."

Nov 24, 2023; Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts, USA; Miami Hurricanes head coach Mario Cristobal calls a
Nov 24, 2023; Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts, USA; Miami Hurricanes head coach Mario Cristobal calls a / Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports
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The 12-13 record in two seasons for Mario Cristobal with the Miami football program is the fourth worst among Power Five coaches hired for the 2022 season. Tony Elliott of Virginia at 6-16, Brent Pry of Virginia Tech, who is 10-14 and Billy Napier of Florida at 11-14, are behind Cristobal.

Pry earned his first bowl win as a head coach in December. Tom Fornelli of CBS Sports gave Cristobal a D+ in his article "College football second-year coach grades: Kalen DeBoer earns 'A+' mark, Billy Napier gets 'D.'

The one thing saving Cristobal is signing consecutive top-10 classes in his first two cycles with Miami. Miami signed the seventh-best class in the 2023 247 Sports Composite Rankings. The Hurricanes have the fourth-best 2024 Class. Several Miami freshmen made an impact in 2023.

Rueben Bain won the ACC Defensive Rookie of the Year, Mark Fletcher was Miami's second-leading rusher, Francis Mauigoa started every game at right tackle and Emory Williams started two games at quarterback for the Hurricanes in 2023. Cristobal has shown he is not afraid to play freshmen.

"The good news is Miami didn't lose to Middle Tennessee this year. The bad news is it only went 7-6 and is 12-13 in two seasons under Cristobal, including a 6-10 record in the ACC. That's not why he was hired. However, the Canes are doing well on the recruiting trail and will be considered one of the favorites in the conference next year."

Tom Fornelli CBS Sports

Miami was picked fifth in the 2023 ACC Preseason rankings and finished 10th. Adding QB Cam Ward as a transfer should elevate Miami offensively in 2024. Defensively, the key will be how the new starting safeties play. Miami will have one of the best defensive and offensive lines in the country in 2024.

The addition of five-star defensive linemen Armondo Blount and Justin Scott and transfer tackle C.J. Clark add significant talent for Miami. On offense, wide receivers Ny Carr, Chance Robinson and Joshisa Trader have a chance to make an impact. Center Zach Carpenter is another impact transfer.

Miami 2024 transfer portal addition tracker. Miami 2024 transfer portal addition tracker. dark. Next

If Miami does not improve significantly in 2024 Cristobal will likely receive an F. Cristobal would be the first to admit he didn't come to Miami to finish 12-13. Miami will have one of the best rosters in college football in 2024. There is no reason Miami does not compete for a College Football Playoff spot this fall.