If you would have told Miami Hurricane fans two months ago that they would have a dominant receiver midway through the season, everyone would assume the offense would be extremely successful. Somehow that isn’t true.
During the 2021 season, the Hurricanes' offense was incredible with Tyler Van Dyke under center. The running game struggled at times, but the passing attack more than made up for it.
With Head Coach Mario Cristobal and his staff coming in, the struggles on the ground were supposed to come to an end. But with the loss of top receivers, there were serious questions about who would be catching passes on the outside.
It took a few weeks, but those questions have been answered in a big way by sophomore transfer Colbie Young. There is just one problem; the rest of the offense has struggled to do anything outside of Young.
The ground game has reverted to the inconsistent and frustrating version of itself from the last few seasons. Receivers are unable to get open and catch tough passes regularly, minus Young and the occasional Will Mallory play.
Young didn’t play or record any stats in the first four games of the season. And honestly, that is what everyone expected. He was supposed to be a developed project that we may see in a year or two.
After transferring in from Lackawanna College in June, Young didn’t seem like he was going to touch the field for the first few weeks of the season.
Injuries to multiple players had Miami looking thin at receiver though and gave him a chance to get onto the field. Late in the North Carolina game, he flashed multiple times as a playmaker. He finished that game with three catches for 43 yards and a touchdown.
The following week against Virginia Tech, he was even better. He began the game with a ridiculous one-handed catch down the sideline for 37 yards to set up the first touchdown of the game.
Colbie Young | #TheU® pic.twitter.com/jvT5ACWLVT— GO ‘CANES! (@83_87_89_91_01) October 16, 2022
In the second quarter, he struck again catching a pass in traffic up the seam for a 17-yard touchdown. He finished the game with nine receptions for 101 yards and a touchdown.
Colbie Young are you serious?!@ColbieYoung— Canes Football (@CanesFootball) October 15, 2022
Miami 17, Virginia Tech 0
Tune in: https://t.co/PRi5rbHsGg pic.twitter.com/WNIajVGdUa
Entering the Duke game, there was surely no way he could top that game, right? Wrong. One of the only bright spots on offense was Colbie Young, once again.
Young began the game with another big play for the second week in a row. On the Hurricanes’ first drive, he capped off their 10-play drive with a seven-yard touchdown catch from Tyler Van Dyke.
He continued making plays throughout the first half, but Miami was unable to score again before halftime. So Young needed to make more plays, this time with backup quarterback Jake Garcia.
COLBIE.— Bally Sports South (@BallySportsSO) October 22, 2022
AGAIN.@ColbieYoung | @CanesFootball pic.twitter.com/ubGVnUqx2v
They didn’t waste any time. Garcia found Young deep down the right sideline with Young making the catch and then breaking free of a defender to walk in for a 72-yard touchdown. He was once again the reason the Canes’ offense looked competent for a moment.
He finished the game with 127 yards and two touchdowns on six catches. For his efforts, Young was named ACC Receiver of the Week.
#ACCFootball Players of the Week! ⬇️— ACC Football (@ACCFootball) October 24, 2022
: @WakeFB: QB
: @ClemsonFB: RB + OL
: @CanesFootball: WR
: @UVAFootball: DL
: @LouisvilleFB: LB
: @DukeFOOTBALL: DB + Specialist + Rookie
: https://t.co/XnUfJXrmIw pic.twitter.com/o6gQJ4uCUH
In three games, Young has 18 catches for 271 yards and four touchdowns. If he were to hold his current averages for an entire 12-game season, he would finish with 72 catches for 1,080 yards and 16 touchdowns.
Young has had success with Van Dyke and Garcia while everyone else on the offense, besides maybe Mallory, has struggled to make plays and consistently catch passes. And I think we now know why.
Colbie Young is a star.