2017 Prespring Rankings: No. 103 Miami University RedHawks
The 2017 prespring college football rankings, taking the first look at the Miami University RedHawks
No. 103: Miami University RedHawks
Miami University RedHawks Prespring Status
All of a sudden, Miami went from being in the midst of an all-too-typical clunker of a RedHawk season, to a run to a bowl game with plenty of excitement under head coach Chuck Martin. With a six-game winning streak before a dogfight of a bowl loss to Mississippi State, is this when Miami becomes a real, live player in the MAC race again? Loaded with offensive talent compared to what it had coming into last year, and with the defense looking up after a phenomenal season, the expectations might be conference title or bust.
Miami University RedHawks Biggest Issue
And the pass rush is going to come from where? Everyone else is back on D, but now MU has to be more dangerous, and without their two top ends. The RedHawks weren’t regulars at getting to the quarterback, even with all the defensive success, and now 10.5 of the 24 sacks are gone with DEs JT Jones and Austin Gearing both done. Jones was the team’s most disruptive force behind the line, while Gearing helped take the pressure off on the other side.
Miami University RedHawks Biggest Positive
The Gus Ragland show rolls on. Of course, getting nine starters back on defense is the biggest overall plus, but the RedHawks need more firepower – that’s where Ragland comes in. The offense took off once the star young quarterback found his groove, throwing 17 touchdown passes and just one pick in his seven games over the back half of the season. With the top two receivers returning, along with the top three running backs, Ragland won’t have to do it all by himself.
Really, Why Are The Miami University RedHawks Ranked Here?
Which team will show up? Was the back half of 2016 just a fluke? The experience is in place to come up with a massive year, and Ragland could be the MAC’s new superstar, but MU beat six bad teams on its streak – or, five bad teams and an okay Eastern Michigan. There’s still a prove-it factor for a RedHawk team that only finished the year averaging around 23 points per game and struggled so much to run the ball.