So prior to Hoops season I did THIS and what do you know?? UM went on to win the ACC regular season and tournament championships in hoops!
I am, if nothing else, a slave to superstitions.
Therefore, with out further delay here are my Top 10 reasons why UM can win the ACC in Football and go to a BCS Bowl:
#1 - Stephen Morris is ready to break out. I mean REALLY break out. Something clicked in Morris head at the end of last season. Morris had an excellent junior campaign overall, tossing for 3,345 yards and 21/7 TD/INT. But over the last 4 contests he was at his very best, hitting just at 60 % of his passes for 1,121 yards and most impressively 11 TDs and 0 picks. Now I am no Jon Gruden in terms of QB evaluation but it doesn't take your own show on ESPN to see that the game really slowed down for the ultra confident Morris. Expect a HUGE year with video game like #s for number 17 in 2013-14.
#2 - Duke Johnson might score 20 TDs this year. As a true freshman Duke rushed for 957 yards on 6.9 per carry and 10 TDs, adding one TD receiving and 2 more on returns, and oh yeah even tossed one, earning ACC freshman of the year honors. Something tells me Duke has only scratched the surface of his abilities, and that is a pretty sick surface. Look for Johnson to hit at least 1,500 yards and 15 TDs on the ground while doing even more in the passing and return games.
#3 - In my admittedly very biased opinion, the Hurricanes have one of the 2 or 3 best offensive lines in the country. Word around camp is that Seantrel Henderson, the one time top recruit in the nation, is taking on a new leadership role and appears ready to finally blossom into a first round like talent. Sophomore Ereck Flowers has been so good at the other T that Miami has moved the very talented and massive Malcolm Bunche to G. There, he is expected to split time with arguably Miami's best run blocker in Jon Feliciano. Oh yeah Shane McDermott still anchors the group at C with near flawless play, and Brandon Linder is as durable and talented as any of Miami's lineman at the other G. We haven't even mentioned guys like Danny Isidora or Taylor Gadbois, both of whom showed vast improvements during the spring. Great teams start with great play up front, and UM has no question marks up front offensively.
#4 Which brings me to the next reason I think Miami is poised for a big year, the defensive line. Ok I know what your thinking, not so hot last year (understatement). But interior linemen Curtis Porter, Olsen Pierre, and Luther Robinson are all healthy and experienced now. UM does not need these guys to play like Warren Sapp to win the ACC (although it would be nice). Anthony Chickillo is still solid if not spectacular, and Shayon Green is a tough anchor on the other end, albeit his pass rushing abilities leave something to be desired. Tyriq McCord is being played as a hybrid DE/OLB and should be on a force on the edge. Bottom line if this group can improve just enough to make the 'Canes middle of the pack against the run, it should be enough. After all Miami finished 5-3 last year in conference when at times these guys couldn't stop a nose bleed. Expect better this year.
#5 This might be the most talented WR group since the Houston Oilers ran the run and shoot (showing my age here). Allen Hurns is reliable and tough. Phillip Dorsett is an explosive play waiting to happen (he promises to hold on to more this year). Herb Waters was a revelation late season as a freshman, and has been unstoppable all spring. Malcolm Lewis is an inspiration coming off of a devastating ankle injury, but more importantly a very good option in the slot. I haven't even mentioned Rashawn Scott, or sensational incoming freshman Stacy Coley.
#6 Deon Bush and Tracy Howard. As true freshmen Bush was a little ahead of Howard in terms of playing time and productivity but expect both of these former top recruits to have major impacts as sophomores on what should be a very improved secondary.
#7 Denzel Perryman. #52 wreaked havoc in the spring game with 2 INTs, Now that he has been moved to the outside and will spend less time taking on interior lineman, expect more big plays. Perryman has all the speed, size, and thumping ability to be a DJ Williams type as an OLB. This can only help the much maligned defense.
#8 Pat O'Donnell. Who??? Miami's new punter, that's who! The 6'5 222 transfer from Cincinnati has a serious leg. Not that the 'Canes are going to punt that often this year but its' good to know they have a secret weapon for games where field position is critical.
#9 The schedule for once, is not that daunting. of their 4 out of conference games, UF should be the only real toss up. Within the conference they VT, GT, and UVA at home and travel to UNC, FSU, and PITT. Considering the Hurricanes return 20/22 starters and do not play their first ACC contest until 10/5, this schedule is very doable.
#10 Last but not least, its just time. It was Howard Schnellenberger's third year with the program in 1982 that the team went 9-2 and finished top 10, taking a huge leap toward contention. It's Al Golden's third year, this year. He finally has a somewhat balanced roster, mixed with upperclassmen. The team appears more focused then any time in recent history. They have a good senior QB and a true star in Duke Johnson. They are hungry!! All of the ingredients are in place for a memorable and highly successful season.
All the reasons above are why I feel Miami can can win the ACC and go to a BCS Bowl. Do I think the 'Canes can win a 6th National Championship? You never know!!