If you’re anything like me- the jonesin’ for college football is already starting to rumble. This is the time of the year when the SEGA comes out for some Bill Walsh College Football and spring games are streaming every weekend. Spring football is a chance to get out and watch not only your team but their opponents for the upcoming season, too. The Hurricanes play eleven FBS level schools and each one is hosting some form of a spring game in 2018. Here are the ‘Canes opponents, their spring game date, time and channel (if announced) and the reason you should watch.
Louisiana State Tigers
April 21, 6pm, SEC Network
What to watch for: LSU has a new offensive coordinator in Steve Ensminger, who hasn’t been a full-time coordinator in decades. Ensminger’s offense has to find a quarterback to save Coach O’s job at LSU as not a lot has changed since Les Miles’ tenure.
FIU Golden Panthers
April 6, 7pm, TBA
What to watch for: A Ken Dorsey sighting would be nice. FIU has a QB competition between grad transfer James Morgan, 2017 backup Maurice Alexander, Kaylan Wiggins, Christian Alexander, and freshman Caleb Lynum (side note: I coached against Lynum years ago).
April 14, TBA, ACC Extra
What to watch for: Another QB competition. Larry Fedora has to figure out if his QB is Chazz Surratt, Nathan Elliott, or Logan Byrd- a transfer from Gulf Coast Community College. Surratt and Elliott made starts for the Heels in 2017.
April 14, Noon, TBA
What to watch for: A common theme for 2018: Jason Candle has to replace QB Logan Woodside this spring. Also a Kevin Beard sighting could be possible as the former Miami wide receiver is the recruiting coordinator at Toledo.
April 14, 6pm, ACC Extra
What to watch for: There’s a quarterback competition at FSU, too, but Willie Taggart won’t get to see James Blackman and Deondre Francois in direct competition until the fall. Francois isn’t cleared for the spring game coming off a knee injury. It’ll be interesting to see what Taggart’s offense looks like at FSU and if the defense improves.
April 28, TBA, TBA
What to watch for: Bronco Mendenhall has done diligent work turning UVA around from two wins up to six wins in 2017. Bronco will have to replace Kurt Benkert at QB, and they’re looking at a dual-threat QB in JUCO transfer Bryce Perkins from Arizona Western. He’ll also have to replace middle linebacker Micah Kiser in his 3-4 defense.
April 14, 11:30, ACC Extra
What to watch for: The Eagles return nine starters on a bad offense. BC ranked 101st in offense per Bill C’s S&P+ analytical rankings. The Eagles have improved and offensive coordinator Scot Loeffler feels like they’re ahead of schedule.
April 14, 1pm, ACC Extra
What to watch for: David Cutcliffe turned down the chance to become the Tennessee Volunteers head football coach to stay at Duke. He has a good young QB in Daniel Jones who enters his junior year with twenty-five games under his belt.
April 20, 7pm, TBA
What to watch for: The Jackets’ triple option offense is always fun to watch and Paul Johnson could be on his way out of Atlanta. His contract “extension” might say 2020 on paper but the buyout seemed to be downsized. This could be the final spring of the Flexbone in the ACC.
April 14, 3pm, TBA
What to watch for: Justin Fuente turned down a few different offers to stay in Blacksburg, VA. Fuente’s offense needs to continue to improve under QB Josh Jackson. Bud Foster’s defense has to replace the Edmunds brothers who took off for the NFL. The Hokies-Hurricanes mini-rivalry game has been fairly back and forth since the 2000 season.
April 14, 1pm, TBA
What to watch for: The Panthers started the downward slide of the Hurricanes in 2017. Pat Narduzzi’s defense stifled Malik Rosier and freshman QB Kenny Pickett did just enough to beat Miami. Watching Pickett’s growth will be interesting this spring.
Hopefully these spring games will quench your football thirst and help get through the lull of the post March Madness news stream until the NBA Conference Finals start up this summer.