On Thursday afternoon, Sports Illustrated released their post-spring top 25. In that list, the Miami Hurricanes were ranked 6th behind Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State, Washington, and Wisconsin.
Miami, coming off a 10-3 season, dropped their final 2 games to the teams ranked 2nd and 5th, respectively, on SI’s post-spring rankings. So, it stands to reason that those teams would be ranked ahead of the Canes.
Here’s what SI had to say about Miami in their capsule:
The Hurricanes are retooling along the defensive line after watching Chad Thomas, R.J. McIntosh and Kendrick Norton get drafted, DJ Johnson transfer to Oregon and respected DL coach Craig Kuligowski leave for Alabama. That said, stud linebacker Shaquille Quarterman (junior) is back to anchor the middle of the defense, and play-making safety Jaquan Johnson (senior) returns to patrol the back end. Miami was set at running back before signing day, with both junior Travis Homer and sophomore DeeJay Dallas returning, but when in need of a big play, the Hurricanes should be able to turn to early enrollee true freshman Lorenzo Lingard. The six-foot, 195-pound five-star prospect out of Orange City, Fla., competed with the Hurricanes’ track team this spring.
None of that is “new” for those who read SOTU regularly, but it’s good and interesting to see SI’s take on the Canes.
We’ve already written about expectations for this year, where the SOTU readership showed by virtue of their voting that greatness is expected in the 2018 season
And we’ve also written about what the expectations should be in general for the next segment of the Mark Richt era
But, with every passing day, another outlet, whether it be the Sporting News or Sports Illustrated or ESPN or SBNation or (insert other), has ranked Miami in the top 10, with many nearing top 5 status.
Maybe it’s because we lost the last 3 games of 2017 in pretty horrific fashion. Maybe it’s because I, personally, don’t think the incumbent and likely startign QB is that good. Maybe, I can’t see the forest for the trees. But, top 6 seems a bit optimistic TO ME.
Miami is clearly stacked at the skill positions. Miami clearly has talent (if still lacking optimal depth) along the defensive line. Miami has 2 of the best DBs in America, with more where that came from. And, overall, Miami has one of the more talented rosters in America.
Those things are what led SI, and others, to rank the Canes very highly coming out of spring practice. And, if we’re luky, those will be the same things that propel Miami back into the conversation with the CFB elite in 2018.