Miami Hurricanes Open to 2017 Season Against Bethune-Cookman

This will mark the second time in three seasons the Hurricanes and Wildcats are playing in the season opener. Miami pounded B-C 45-0 in 2014 in what would become Al Golden’s last season opener as Miami Head Coach. The teams have met three times total with Miami winning all three by a combined score of 128-14.

Bethune-Cookman is located in Daytona Beach and is a member of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC). The Wildcats finished 4-6 overall and 4-4 in conference play in 2016. They lost 41-20 to North Texas in their lone game against a Football Bowl Subdivision team in 2016.

North Texas finished the season 5-8 and lost the Heart of Dallas Bowl 38-31 in overtime to Army. The Mean Green were in a Bowl game because not enough teams finished with a winning record in FBS.

They earned the bid based on their The Academic Progress Rate (APR). The APR is a multi-year measurement of academic progress and an institution’s retention of student-athletes. It is designed to track student-athletes who receive athletics financial aid. The report is based on two factors: eligibility/progress toward graduation and retention.

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This will be the third year in a row Miami opens the season with an FCS opponent. Miami defeated Florida A&M 70-3 in its 2016 season opener. This is the ninth year in a row that Miami will play an FCS team.

Miami will have two other non-conference home games in 2017. They host Toledo on September 23 and Notre Dame November 11. The Hurricanes will also play at Arkansas State as part of their non-conference schedule.

The ACC schedule is not out yet, but Miami will host Coastal Division opponents Georgia Tech, Virginia, Virginia Tech, and Syracuse from the Atlantic Division and travel to Duke, North Carolina, Pittsburgh, and Florida State per FBSchedules.Com. Miami’s crossover games against the Atlantic in 2016 were against North Carolina State and their annual meeting with FSU.

As long as the ACC plays an eight game schedule, Miami will always matchup with the Seminoles and one other team from the Atlantic division. As it stands now this is beneficial in terms of wins and losses, but damages Miami’s strength of schedule.

The Atlantic is currently the stronger division with defending National Champion Clemson, Louisville and Defending Heisman Trophy winner Lamar Jackson and FSU who figures to be ranked in the top five to start the season. FSU won the 2013 National Championship.

Some of the opponents in the non-conference schedule in the next few seasons beyond 2017 include a neutral site season opener against LSU at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas and a trip to Toledo in 2018, a “neutral” site game in Orlando against Florida to open the 2019 season and trip to Michigan State in September 2020.

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