2013 Miami Spring Football Analysis
Miami University RedHawks 2013 ...
Head Coach: Don Treadwell
Why To Be Excited ... There’s a ton of returning experience from a team that lost three of its last four games by a touchdown or less. Eight starters are back on offense including leading receiver Nick Harwell and promising target Dawon Scott to help out quarterback Austin Boucher, who’s just experienced enough to be able to step in and produce with Zac Dysert gone. Four starters are back on an offensive line that struggled, but was young, and seven starters return to a defense that rocky defense that will at least be experienced.
8/31 at Marshall
9/7 at Kentucky
9/14 OPEN DATE
9/28 at Illinois
10/5 Central Michigan
10/12 at UMass
10/26 at Ohio
11/5 Bowling Green
11/13 at Kent State
11/23 OPEN DATE
11/29 at Ball State
Why To Be Grouchy ... Yes, four offensive linemen are back, but that hasn’t necessarily meant anything to MU’s offense over the years. Last year the line was 112th in the nation in sacks allowed and the ground game was the third-worst. In 2011, MU allowed the second-most sacks and finished dead last in rushing. In 2010, the line gave up 30 sacks and the ground game averaged 98 yards per game. It’s partly because of the design of the offense, but the wheel probably won’t be reinvented with this year’s attack, either.
What Needs Working On ...The run defense has to improve. The ground game might always be an issue in a passing offense, but the bigger problem as the year went on was a run defense that got ripped up for 35 rushing scores and almost 3,000 yards. Buffalo was the only team to run for fewer than two scores against the MU D that generated more than one sack in just three games. Both starting defensive ends are gone with Jason Semmes and Luke Kelly needing to be replaced.
Non-Conference Games: at Marshall, at Kentucky, Cincinnati, at Illinois
Games Against The West: at Ball State, Central Michigan
Realistic Best Case Record: 7-5
Worst Case Record: 2-10
Likely Finish: 4-8
Pre-Preseason Projected Wins: Central Michigan, at UMass, Akron, Buffalo
Pre-Preseason Projected Losses: at Marshall, at Kentucky, Cincinnati, at Illinois, at Ohio, Bowling Green, at Kent State, at Ball State
Schedule Analysis: It’s going to be a bit rough, especially after starting out with three road games against Marshall, Kentucky and Illinois before October. Making matters worse is the one September home game is against Cincinnati. If the RedHawks can get past Central Michigan in the MAC opener, there’s a chance to come up with a nice conference start with a trip to UMass and a date against Akron to follow. And then come the big problems with road trips to Ohio and Kent State wrapped around a home game with Bowling Green. Finishing out at Ball State could make or break the season.
Team Concerns For 2013: MU needs to the running game to work and it needs to all start with the offensive line. If that sounds familiar, it's because the team has had major issues getting the ground attack going over the last few years. The run defense wasn't a prize, either, finishing second-to-last in the nation allowing 241 yards per game. The return game has to find some punch after averaging just 3.17 yards per punt return and 35 yards on kickoffs.
The 2013 Class Is Heavy On ... Linebackers. The RedHawks got some good offensive linemen with Randy Heideman a strong tackle prospect, and the receiving corps got a boost with Jared Murphy and Damon Washington, but the linebackers are going to be the top position.
Safety Airion Kosak is the star of the class, but linebackers Zach Smierciak and Matt Smallbone should eventually be two of the biggest producers on the D. Corner Heath Harding has the tools to eventually be a No. 1 coverman.
2012 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 75. That Class Was Heavy On ... Defensive line. The RedHawks continue to go after big class after big class with the lines getting the most help. The offense hasn’t gotten anything out of the line over the last few years, and this class has quality more than quantity. The defensive front gets the most talent with decent athletes at tackle and a few nice players for the end. The receiving corps should get some immediate help.
2011 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 112. That Class Was Heavy On ... The Secondary. The last few classes were about bringing up the talent level a bit with more players and more options to provide depth. Those two classes will mature this year for new head coach Don Treadwell, and now he and the coaching staff, with little time to work, are trying to secure the secondary with several corner prospects, led by the speedy Jamarcus Darden, and big-hitting safety Tre Clif
2010 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 113. That Class Was
Heavy On ... More bodies.
Shane Montgomery came up with a huge class last year
based more on bulk prospects than sure-thing stars.
The same goes for this year with a slew of players
brought in to create more depth and to do more
developing. OT Jeff Tanner will be an All-MAC
performer before his time is done and he should combine with Tyler Grubbs to form a nice pair of bookends.
2009 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 94. That Class Was
Heavy On ... Bodies. This is a big class full of a variety of prospects that don’t necessarily fit a type, and with a program that fell off the map with one of the most disappointing, disastrous seasons of any team in America, it’s rebuilding time. The idea will be to use this class to build towards the future; don’t expect a whole bunch of help right away.