The first football game preview is here people! Get excited. The Miami Hurricanes kick off their 2022 football season against the Bethune Cookman Wildcats on September 3rd at 3:30 pm at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, FL.
The history of this matchup is decidedly one-sided in Miami’s favor. The Canes are 5-0 all time against the BC from FL, with a total score of 232 to 37, including two shutouts. Miami’s opening game should be the least competitive of their season. That said, it will provide the opportunity for younger players to get on the field and gain confidence for the tougher games that follow.
What to watch for: Miami Hurricanes
Offensive and defensive execution. We all know Miami can win this game on athleticism, but I want to see how the starting players execute the plans of their new coordinators. Every Miami fan I know was excited by the hire of Josh Gattis as Offensive Coordinator. This game should be a good sign of how the offense adjusts to a new style, play-calling, etc. It will also show us fans how productive spring ball was for the players and their new coaching staff. On defense, the word for me is DISCIPLINE. Missed assignments and missed tackles were the common theme during Manny Diaz’s tenure. This was doubly frustrating being that Manny’s coaching background came from the defensive side of the ball. (Sigh). Hopefully that is a thing of the past with new Defensive Coordinator Kevin Steele. He brings a history of accountability with him, something this current Hurricane defense sorely needs.
The #Canes just announced their coordinator hires, so join Stef and D$ on a deep dive to get to know OC Josh Gattis and DC Kevin Steele in terms of what they've done in the past and how that could translate to UM in the future. Presented by @Canes_Wearhttps://t.co/OcnH7w9rCB— CanesInSight (@CanesInSight) February 10, 2022
What to watch for: Bethune Cookman Wildcats
Umm..halftime? We all know the saying: “Bethune Cookman might be down big on the scoreboard, but they are dominating halftime!” Their marching band is extremely impressive and could be considered the best in the entire country. I grew up in Orlando, where the Florida Classic was played every year between Florida A&M and Bethune Cookman. Watching the marching band highlights and seeing downtown Orlando turn into a huge party was a fun experience every fall.
Player to watch: Miami Hurricanes
Don Chaney Jr. - Running Back. I love Jaylen Knighton, his speed, and his pass-catching ability out of the backfield. However, before his season-ending injury in 2020, Don Chaney Jr. was the best running back on the Miami roster. He played like a smaller version of his #2 predecessor at Miami, Willis McGahee. If Chaney can show he is completely healthy coming back from his torn ACL, he should take over RB1 and be the force we all saw glimpses of his freshman year.
Don Chaney Jr 2020 pic.twitter.com/FQrg3essDr— Mario szn (@CaneFilms) January 12, 2021
Player to watch: Bethune Cookman Wildcats
I’m going to say Kemari Averett - Tight End. He led BC with 876 receiving yards and 10 touchdowns. The Hurricane defense as a whole should be too overwhelming for the Wildcats’ offense. Having said that, Averett could still provide an early season test for the pass-coverage abilities of Miami’s linebackers. Canes fans will be anxiously awaiting how the linebackers look in the season opener. A strong showing against an overmatched team should build confidence.
Miami wins 52-7. I think TVD and the starting offense will put up 35 points in the first half. He looks sharp in the new offense under Josh Gattis. Don Chaney Jr. breaks a few big runs, with one going for a touchdown. Andres Borregales gets to kick a field goal in the third quarter. Backup Quarterback Jake Garcia completes some nice passes in the second half. Miami’s defensive backups give up a late fourth quarter touchdown, resulting in Kevin Steele screaming at them as they come off the field. That should be the expectation for this year’s team.