Miami Win Total Prediction
With a new head coach running the show, can the Miami Hurricanes find their way to a big season in 2019?
The Hurricanes had three seasons under Mark Richt come to an end last winter when he decided to step away from the program. Richt had a 26-13 record in three years, including a 7-6 mark in the 2018 season. Now, Manny Diaz takes over. He was set to begin his head coaching career at Temple, but took the Miami job just two weeks later. According to oddsmakers, the Hurricanes are listed with an over/under of 8.5 wins for the 2019 regular season. The over is listed with -130 odds, while the under is set at +110.
Miami was a mess on offense last season, averaging just 28.8 points and 358.8 yards per game. Their passing attack was among the worst in the nation at 167.3 yards per game. This year, Miami has a QB battle for new OC Dan Enos to work through. N’Kosi Perry led the team with 1,089 passing yards in 2018, but he will be competing for the job with redshirt freshman Jarren Williams and Ohio State transfer Tate Martell. Good news for the winner is that leading receiver Jeff Thomas is back, along with starting tight end Brevin Jordan. The Canes return just two on the offensive line and have to replace leading rusher Travis Homer, but DeeJay Dallas is back after rushing for 609 yards and six scores.
The Miami defense was among the best in the nation last year, allowing just 19.5 points and 278.6 yards per game. Their pass defense led the nation by allowing just 135.6 yards per contest. Six starters are back on defense, but just one in that secondary. Junior CB Trajan Bandy had three interceptions last year to be tied for the team lead. Up front, Miami brings a lot back. Leading the way will be linebacker Shaquille Quarterman and defensive lineman Jonathan Garvin. The two combined for 11.5 sacks and 130 tackles.
Miami will open the year against Florida in Orlando on a neutral field. The Canes also have non-conference games with Bethune-Cookman, Central Michigan and Florida International. In ACC play, Miami hosts Virginia Tech, Virginia, Georgia Tech and Louisville. On the road, Miami travels to UNC, Pitt, Florida State and Duke.
Expectations seem high for Miami given the rough 2018 it had and a new coach coming in. The Hurricanes open the season with a good Florida team that I think will be a loss. The Canes also have four of their final five games on the road. I don’t think it’s a given that Miami is going to be vastly improved on offense and I don’t see its defense playing as well as it did a year ago. I think Miami winning 9 of 12 in this schedule is a reach.
College Football Prediction: Miami Under 8.5 Wins +110