Hurricanes on the rise entering game against Bethune Cookman

Junior safety James Williams smiles after third quarter touchdown in Miami's game against Texas A&M at Hard Rock Stadium on Sept. 9, 2023. Photo credit: Alexandra Fisher

The Miami Hurricanes (2-0) are on fire as they head into a Thursday night matchup against the Bethune-Cookman Wildcats (1-1). Kickoff will take place at 7:30 p.m. at Hard Rock Stadium.

Coming off a massive win against the previously ranked Texas A&M Aggies, Miami is now ranked No. 22 and hopes to improve its record to 3-0.

The Hurricanes’ defense will need to step up this Thursday with the loss of junior star defensive back Kam Kinchens this past Saturday. Kinchens suffered a scary injury that had him carted off the field. He later posted a picture on his social media from the hospital demonstrating that he was alright.

“I want to thank everyone for the prayers, I’m doing better,” Kinchens said.

Although it’s not yet known how much time Kinchens will miss on the field, his progress is encouraging.

With the win against the Aggies comes a huge confidence boost for the Miami football program. The ‘Canes played a great game on both sides of the ball and won 48-33 against a tough Aggies team. Miami quarterback junior Tyler Van Dyke showed extreme comfort, throwing for 374 yards and five touchdowns.

According to Miami head coach Mario Cristobal, the win came down to the details.

“We felt that if we eliminated mistakes, we’d be able to take over the football game, and we did,” said Cristobal.

While last week’s game was a challenging test of the ‘Canes skill this season, a win this week against Bethune-Cookman should come without a hitch. According to ESPN Analytics, Miami has a 99% chance to win against the Wildcats.

Last year, Miami won against Bethune-Cookman, scoring 70 points and allowing only 13. Van Dyke had two touchdowns, but the majority of scoring came from leading rusher sophomore Henry Parrish Jr. Parrish rushed for 108 yards and scored three touchdowns in last year’s matchup.

With Parrish as Miami’s current leader in rush yards, the Wildcats can expect a heavy run game again this year. Parrish already has 140 rush yards in the first two games, and the ‘Canes receivers also look strong. Junior Xavier Restrepo, junior Colbie Young, and junior Jacolby George have all performed phenomenally this season.

While the ‘Canes look strong, the Wildcats offense does. Junior quarterback Luke Sprague has completed 74.3% of his passes in the first two games for 244 yards and two touchdowns. Senior running back Jouvensly Bazil leads the team with two touchdowns.

Bethune-Cookman took a 31-6 win this Saturday against the Savannah State Tigers but lost their first game to the Memphis Tigers 56-14.

A victory should come smoothly for the ‘Canes this Thursday, and after Saturday’s triumph against Texas A&M, Miami has the confidence to defeat Bethune-Cookman.