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The Miami Hurricanes are playing the Miami RedHawks. Pardon me for not inserting the state abbreviation next to their names. If you do not know that the Hurricanes are from Miami, FL, then I welcome you to this planet and hope you enjoy your stay.

There are five things that I want to see from the Canes on Friday night when they kick off their season at 7 pm EST on the ACC Network. These are five things that will set the tone for the season.

First, they need to come out explosive early. It is time to take the training wheels off, and let Tyler Van Dyke run the offense like the finely-tuned machine that it is. Offensive Coordinator Shannon Dawson should show us enough of the playbook for Van Dyke to throw for over 300 yards and for the Hurricanes to rush for more than 200 yards behind The Great Wall of Mirabal.

Second, I want to see what the much-heralded offensive line can do to protect Van Dyke and open up running lanes for Henry Parrish, Jr. and Mark Fletcher to run through. With a new center, guard, and mammoth tackle, the Canes should be able to open holes you can drive a truck through.

Third, we need to see the speed that Mario Cristobal has been looking for and finally found. Look for Colbie Young and Nathaniel Joseph to show the flash. Hopefully, as fast as they are, their hands are that soft, and they can actually run and catch. That was something that plagued the Hurricanes last year. Xavier Restrepo will line up in the slot, and he is finally healthy after an injury-plagued 2022 season. Tyler Harrell, a transfer from Alabama, will line up out wide when the Canes go to four-receiver sets.

I want to see production from the tight end position. Will Mallory graduated and went to the Indianapolis Colts in the 2023 NFL Draft. It will be real interesting to see what Jaleel Skinner and Elijah Arroyo can do on the field. They need to live up to the Canes' rich history of producing top tight ends such as Mallory, Brevin Jordan, Jeremy Shockey, Jimmy Graham, etc.

Finally, Miami has a crowded backfield, and they are going to use a running back-by-committee approach this week to see who emerges. I would like to see Fletcher show his track speed and run like the wind. Parrish will get his touches too, and he is no slouch. He led the team in rushing last season, and he is not going to lose his starting spot to Fletcher without a fight.

Coach Cristobal did not release a two-deep depth chart at press time. I guess we will find out Friday night.



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