The U never backs down from a challenge and that scheduling approach is carrying over into the future.
Miami is reportedly trying to add a marquee opponent to play in Orlando to open the 2024 season, according to reporter Brett McMurphy.
Sources: Miami looking to add another marquee neutral site opponent to open 2024 season in Orlando. Hurricanes already have scheduled season openers vs. LSU (Sept. 2 in Arlington); Florida (2019 in Orlando) & Alabama (2021 in Atlanta)
— Brett McMurphy (@Brett_McMurphy) May 23, 2018
Strength of schedule is vital when it comes to qualifying for the College Football Playoff. So this is another encouraging step as Miami tries to regain its past prominence.
Miami already has a trio of neutral-site showdowns on the schedule: against LSU on Sept. 2, 2018 (in Arlington, Texas), against Florida in 2019 (in Orlando) and the 2021 opener against Alabama in Atlanta, Ga.
Last season, Miami posted a 10-3 record to win the ACC Coastal for the first time and went 7-0 at home during the regular season before losing to Wisconsin in the Orange Bowl.
While no schools have been linked to the 2024 date, that doesn’t mean we can’t have a little fun and speculate.
Here is a top 5 wish list:
The Hurricanes are already scheduled to play Alabama, so it’s only fitting they take on the Tide’s in-state rival next. Auburn leads the all-time series 7-4, but Miami has won the last two meetings (1978, 1984). This is a long-overdue matchup. It would provide the ACC another opportunity to take down the conference many feel is too entitled. Any time you have the chance to beat an SEC school, you gladly take the opportunity.
It’s crazy to think two of the most storied programs in the history of college football haven’t met since 1968. The all-time series is tied at 1. The teams have combined for 15 national titles and 145 first-round draft picks, which make sense considering Florida and California are two of the biggest talent hotbeds. Getting the Trojans to travel across the country to Orlando might be far-fetched, but there’s no denying this would be an epic showdown.
3. Penn State
This classic rivalry needs to be renewed. Penn State leads the all-time series 7-6. The most recent contest is a Miami victory in 2001. The Nittany Lions defeated the Hurricanes in the 1987 Fiesta Bowl for the national championship. Miami stepped off the plane decked out in military fatigues to fan the flames of the “Good vs. Evil” storyline between the teams. In today’s age of social media, the back and forth between both fan bases would be fantastic.
One of the top dawgs (pun intended) in the SEC also provides a possible revenge-factor side plot for Miami coach Mark Richt. Richt is as classy as they come, but after being let go by Georgia in 2015 after five division titles and two conference titles in 15 seasons, it would be reasonable for him to have a chip on his shoulder. Plus, you can bet the Hurricanes players will be extra motivated to get a W for their coach. Georgia leads the all-time series 7-4, but the last game was a Miami victory in 1966.
1. Ohio State
This is a no-brainer. Hurricanes fans remain convinced the refs robbed Miami of its sixth national title in the 2003 Fiesta Bowl against Ohio State. If you’re a younger or new fan of The U, here is a video refresher:
Since then, the hatred and bitterness toward the Buckeyes by the Miami faithful has intensified. The all-time series is tied at 2. Most recently, Miami defeated Ohio State in a 2011 home game. Everyone obviously wants a rematch on the big stage to exact justice. But until that happens, putting a major dent in Ohio State’s national title odds in a season opener will have to suffice.