Miami (Ohio) RedHawks 2024 Season Preview 

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Backed by an impressive roster, the Miami (Ohio) RedHawks are gearing up for what promises to be a standout college football 2024 season

With starting quarterback Brett Gabbert and a sturdy offensive line returning, along with the reigning MAC Defensive Player of the Year, the team is poised for a triumphant run. 

Head Coach Chuck Martin’s squad aims to clinch their third championship game appearance in six years, banking on veteran experience and solid leadership. The primary focus will be on bolstering the defensive line and uncovering reliable offensive skill players. 

Should these pieces fall into place, Miami is well-positioned to dominate the MAC. 

Miami’s Offense for 2024  

The Miami RedHawks’ offense is set to make waves in the 2024 season, spearheaded by the resilient Brett Gabbert, who returns for his sixth year. After a severe leg injury cut short his previous campaign against Toledo, Gabbert rebounded to earn third-team All-MAC honors, underscoring his status as the league’s top returning quarterback. With no restrictions heading into the fall, Gabbert’s leadership and experience are invaluable assets to Miami. 

Anchoring the offensive front, four of the five starters from last year’s MAC championship team are back, providing a solid foundation for the RedHawks’ attack. Left tackle Will Jados and right tackle Reid Holskey both received second-team All-MAC accolades, while center Kolby Borders is poised to join their ranks this season. This well-established offensive line will be critical in giving Gabbert the protection he needs to orchestrate the offense. 

In the backfield, the departure of top rusher Rashad Amos opens the door for Kenny Tracy, who showed promise last year with his versatility and strong pass protection. Tracy is expected to see a significant increase from his 46 carries. Joining him is Purdue transfer Dylan Downing, who adds depth and competition to the running game. 

At receiver, the RedHawks must compensate for the loss of Gage Larvadain. Fortunately, they have reliable options in Javon Tracy and Cade McDonald, both of whom bring experience and playmaking ability. Additionally, veteran tight end Jack Coldiron returns following a knee injury that sidelined him for most of 2023, providing another reliable target in the passing game. 

This combination of a seasoned quarterback, a fortified offensive line, and a mix of experienced and new skill players positions Miami’s offense to be a formidable force. If these elements click, the RedHawks are set for a thrilling and successful 2024 season. 

Miami’s Defense for 2024 

Miami’s defense enters the 2024 season brimming with potential and confidence, a unit that held opponents to a mere 15.9 points per game last year, ranking seventh nationally. At the heart of this formidable defense is Matt Salopek, the MAC Defensive Player of the Year, who boasts a staggering 392 career tackles from his linebacker position. Salopek’s football IQ and unerring instincts make him the indisputable leader of the defense, and he will be pivotal in coordinating plays and ensuring the unit remains a cohesive force. 

Flanking Salopek is the athletic Ty Wise, a second-team All-MAC linebacker with the agility and vision that could see him advancing to professional play. Wise’s versatility and ability to read the game provide the RedHawks with a dynamic weapon in defense, capable of closing down runners and making critical tackles. Both linebackers will form a crucial partnership that sets the tempo for Miami’s defensive strategies. 

On the defensive line, Brian Ugwu stands out as a cornerstone, having accumulated eight sacks and ten quarterback hurries last season, earning him second-team All-MAC honors. Ugwu’s explosive speed off the edge and ability to penetrate the offensive line make him a nightmare for opposing quarterbacks. However, beyond Ugwu, the line will see some new faces stepping up. Kobe Hilton, with his interior experience, will be a key player, but the rest of the line will need to gel quickly under the pressure of live games. This learning on the job will be a critical factor in whether the RedHawks can maintain their defensive prowess. 

In the secondary, the RedHawks benefit from the return of two seasoned starters. Cornerback Raion Strader, an FWAA Freshman All-American, is expected to lock down one side of the field with his keen coverage skills and sharp instincts. Meanwhile, safety Eli Blakey’s presence adds a layer of stability and experience in the backfield. The challenge for Miami will be integrating new starters into the other secondary positions, including the crucial nickel spot, without losing defensive coherence. 

Can Miami (Ohio) Repeat as MAC Champions? 

The Miami RedHawks are in a strong position to repeat as MAC champions in 2024. Leveraging an elite defense that held opponents to 15.9 points per game last year, the RedHawks return a substantial portion of their championship squad, giving them a solid foundation upon which to build. 

Plus, the Miami RedHawks odds for 2024 are looking favorable. They’ll need to navigate a competitive landscape, with Toledo frequently securing top recruits and driven to outshine Miami despite significant roster changes. 

Meanwhile, Ohio’s offensive losses and the upward trends of Bowling Green and Western Michigan make for a tumultuous race to the top. However, Miami’s veteran leadership, spearheaded by defensive stalwarts like Matt Salopek, and the dynamic offensive potential under Brett Gabbert, provide a balanced attack that could help them clinch back-to-back titles—an achievement last seen in the MAC over a decade ago with Northern Illinois. 

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One Reply to “Miami (Ohio) RedHawks 2024 Season Preview ”

  1. Not sure that anyone wants to read about college football today, after the death of a football player. It sounds like Khyree Jackson’s situation is just as devastating as Ernie Davis’ situation.

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