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Miami vs Miami (OH): Three Stars

Miami looked good against the MAC team with the same name.

NCAA Football: Miami (OH) at Miami Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

Aaaah, it’s so nice to sit on my couch on a Friday night and enjoy some college football. The Miami Hurricanes whooped the Miami (OH) Red Hawks tonight, 38-3. It was a good opening-game performance, but the real test comes next Saturday against Texas A&M.

Let’s get to the three stars of the game.

1. The defense

I know it’s only Miami (OH). That said, I liked how the Canes defense looked tonight. New defensive coordinator Lance Guidry put his guys in great positions to make plays and get off the field without giving up points. I already love Ruben Bain’s talent and effort. Leonard Taylor was occupying multiple offensive linemen. Francisco Mauigoa was flying around. Kam Kinchens and James Williams kept everything in front of them. My only complaint is the lack of tackles-for-loss. But like I said about the safeties, the defense kept everything in front of them and didn’t allow any huge plays. That is something past Miami teams were unable to accomplish against inferior competition.

Miami (OH) v Miami
Wesley Bissainthe with the sack on a third-down blitz.
Photo by Megan Briggs/Getty Images

2. The running game

The Canes appear to have a stable of running backs in 2023. I still want to see how they play against Texas A&M and in ACC play, but tonight was a great start. Henry Parrish Jr., Mark Fletcher Jr., Ajay Allen, and Donald Chaney Jr. combined for 251 yards on 35 carries with three touchdowns. What’s with all the “Jr” running backs? Odd. Anyway, after a slow start, the Canes dominated the game on the ground. I hope all four guys stay healthy for this season. Their running styles are all different and could present problems for opposing defenses.

3. Colbie Young

The big, talented JUCO transfer led Miami in receiving yards tonight with 79. His best play came on the first drive. Do yourself a favor and watch the highlight below. Young had another play where he broke a couple tackles in order to get a first down. I expect new offensive coordinator Shannon Dawson to figure out ways to get big Colbie the ball in space, as his speed and athleticism make him a true difference-maker on offense. If Young can continue to convert his opportunities on a consistent basis, Miami’s offense goes up a level.

Honorable mention:

Xavier Restrepo - He made a great one-handed catch on the sideline and had another nice catch-and-run on a broken play. I love the rapport he has with TVD. I don’t love him on punt returns.

Who were your three stars of the game? Let us know in the comments below.