Yes, I took off the holiday yesterday to spend time with family and recharge the batteries. I hope you all had a great Christmas and were able to do whatever it is that bring you joy in this world.
With that all being said, let’s get to the Miami Hurricanes-related (and ACC-related) stuff floating around inside my noggin on this fine Tuesday...
1) Can we please win this bowl game? Like, seriously, it’s something that RARELY happens for the University of Miami. The last time the Miami Hurricanes won a bowl game (the 2016 Russell Athletic Bowl against West Virginia for those keeping score at home), they followed it up in 2017 with a 10-win season in what’s been the only memorable year in two decades for the program. Winning a bowl game to go with this recruiting class would be a MASSIVE springboard into 2024 for Mario Cristobal and his Miami Hurricanes. As such, this is no throwaway bowl game in New York against Rutgers. Get. This. Win.
2) Speaking of recruiting.......man. Mario’s got that dawg in him on the trail, y’all. I honestly don’t know how he does it. Yes, the opportunity for a lot of South Florida kids to stay home and play in front of family is always going to be a massive selling point for Mario, but that hasn’t stopped huge talent from leaving the area. It happened again with Jeremiah Smith ultimately sticking with his Ohio State commitment, but flipping Armondo Blount and Jordan Lyle was gigantic. A consensus top five class and a world of momentum. Bravo, Mario. Now just get better at the other aspects of coaching (i.e., in-game coaching, time management, kneeling, etc.), please.
3) Cam Ward continues to ponder a decision. Getting him would be a gigantic chip to fall for a successful 2024 season for the Hurricanes. If you believe Barry Jackson of the Herald, things are trending positively for Miami on that front. However, in college football recruiting - both high school and portal - nothing’s done until the name is signed on the dotted line. I can only hope Mario can close this one and provide an emphatic answer to the biggest question mark on the roster as 2023 comes to an end.
4) Florida State and the ACC are suing each other over what Florida State will be required to do to get out of the ACC’s grant of rights stranglehold over its member institutions. Look, I was quite pissed over the decision to leave FSU out of the playoff. It was a stupid, wrong, indefensible decision by the committee. However, blaming the ACC as a reason for being left out as FSU did in its introductory paragraph of its lawsuit against the ACC was a cheap, petty shot. And not one that’s correct either in my opinion. I get FSU being irate, but now they’re just coming off as whiny, spoiled babies.
That being said, this should be one of the most interesting court cases in college sports history and one that very well could affect Miami’s plans moving forward.