Week 1: Miami Hurricanes
Do you see the light at the end of the tunnel? In less than a week, the Crimson Tide kicks off the 2021 season as they travel to Atlanta to take on the Miami Hurricanes in a rematch of the 1993 Sugar Bowl.
Coach: Manny Diaz (14-10 in two seasons; 11-6 in ACC)
2020 record: 8-3 (7-2 in ACC, 3rd in East Division, lost bowl game to Oklahoma State)
Looking back: The Canes beat UAB, Louisville and FSU before getting throttled by Clemson. They would win their next five but lose to UNC and Okie Lite (Cheez-It Bowl). Quarterback D’Eriq King was getting some preseason Heisman love but did not live up to the hype and tore his ACL in the bowl game.
Returning starters: 10 on offense, 9 on defense, punter.
Key losses: EDGE Jaelan Phillips (Round 1, Dolphins), EDGE Greg Rousseau (Round 1, Bills), TE Brevin Jordan (Round 5, Texans), EDGE Quincy Roche (Round 6, Steelers), K Jose Borregales.
Top returnees: Super-senior QB D’Eriq King, DC Rhett Lashlee, WR Mike Harley, RB Cam’Ron Harris, DT Nesta Jade Silvera, SAF Bubba Bolden.
Top newcomers: projected starting CB Tyrique Stevenson (transfer from UGA), projected starting WR Charleston Rambo (transfer from Okie), projected starting EDGE Deandre Johnson (transfer from Tennessee), DT Leonard Taylor (Miami, FL), DB James Williams (Plantation, FL), QB Jake Garcia (Loganville, GA), WR Romello Brinson (Miami, FL)
Name you need to know: Safety Bubba Bolden is getting a lot of attention after compiling a team-high 74 total tackles in 2020. He also tallied 6.5 tackles for loss, one sack, one interception and team-high four forced fumbles.
Strengths: According to reporters, the Canes have “19 returning starters”... Secondary should be solid... OL should be decent... Punter is back...
Weaknesses: Running back picture is a bit murky... Linebackers are a mess... Four new assistants - all on defense... Finding a kicker... Is King healthy?
Outlook: Miami looked good last year at times but the competition was less than fearsome. In addition, they faltered against the better teams of the ACC and blew their bowl game. Since the Hurricanes miss Clemson this season, anything less than nine regular season wins will be a failure.
Win Total Odds
Over 9.5 +100
Under 9.5 -125
(Assuming King is 100%)
Sat, Sep 4 vs 1 Alabama - L
Sat, Sep 11 vs Appalachian State - W - Don’t get caught looking ahead.
Sat, Sep 18 vs Michigan State - W - Sparty still kinda sucks.
Sat, Sep 25 vs Central Connecticut - W
Thu, Sep 30 vs Virginia - W - UVa is a mess.
Sat, Oct 9 bye
Sat, Oct 16 @ 10 North Carolina - L - The bye week helps but this one is on the road.
Sat, Oct 23 vs NC State - W - Possible derp.
Sat, Oct 30 @ Pitt - W
Sat, Nov 6 vs Georgia Tech - W
Sat, Nov 13 @ Florida State - W - FSU will be UP for this one.
Sat, Nov 20 vs Virginia Tech - W - Will Justin Fuente still be the Hokies’ coach at this point?
Sat, Nov 27 @ Duke - W
The ‘Canes could very well derp up a game or two but this is such a weak conference that it seems against the odds.
Regular season wins for Miami-F-L-A:
This poll is closed
11 or more (!!!)
7 or less and the door for Manny.
ALABAMA SCHEDULE PREVIEWS:
Sep 4 vs Miami* 2:30 PM CT, ABC
Sep 11 vs Mercer 3:00 PM CT, SECN
Sep 18 @ Florida 2:30 PM CT, CBS
Sep 25 vs Southern Miss
Oct 2 vs Ole Miss
Oct 9 @ Texas A&M
Oct 16 @ Mississippi State
Oct 23 vs Tennessee
Oct 30 bye
Nov 6 vs LSU
Nov 13 vs New Mexico State
Nov 20 vs Arkansas
Nov 27 @ Auburn