The Mario Cristobal era is officially off and running as the Miami Hurricanes steam roll Bethune-Cookman 70-13 in the season opener. The 1-0 start is a welcome sight for Canes fans and there’s plenty to be excited about, but Cristobal isn’t satisfied yet. Not even close.
“Overall, I thought we played relatively hard. [There are] things that stand out that we really have to work on that showed up in not such a positive light were a couple of penalties that need to be avoided. We can’t waste positive plays,” said Cristobal of his team’s effort. “Tackling was up and down. We had some good moments and bad moments.”
The Canes dominated from start to finish but made their fair share of mistakes. The penalties, missteps, and missed assignments didn’t bother Miami too much in this one, but they could be costly against a more challenging opponent.
Although Cristobal called Miami’s tackling “up and down”, that should be considered a mostly “down” performance given the level of competition. The defense missed more than a handful of open field tackles, resulting in big plays for the Wildcats.
It’s a new defense under coordinator Kevin Steele which will take a bit of time to get used to, but the Hurricanes need to shore up these holes quickly with Week 3’s matchup with Texas A&M looming.
“Aside from that a lot of balance, some big plays on both sides of the ball. We were able to control the game early,” Cristobal continued.
Despite a few miscues, Miami was able to dominate up front on both sides of the ball. The offensive line pummeled BCU, with center Jakai Clark and guard Jalen Rivers looking especially impressive. Transfer running back Henry Parrish Jr. debuted in explosive fashion, scoring three touchdowns and racking up 133 total yards in fellow RB Jaylan Knighton‘s absence.
The Canes punched in seven scores via the running game, a new school record, and racked up 305 rushing yards. They added another 300 in the passing game to bring their total output to a whopping 605 yards on the day.
As much as they’re enjoying the victory, the only thing on Miami’s mind now is their next opponent.
“1-0, some good things, stuff to work on. And looking forward to getting back to work tomorrow,” Cristobal concluded in his opening statement.
Opening weekend was a success for the Hurricanes, but they’ll need to improve in some key areas before their clash with Southern Miss next weekend. Head coaches are perpetually unsatisfied and Cristobal’s right about the Canes’ room for improvement, but the U is undefeated. Smile Canes fans.
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