When news reached University of Miami football coach Al Golden that his program was voted the favorite to win this year’s Atlantic Coast Conference Coastal Division, he laughed.
Talking to Jeff Fischel of the ACC Digital Network Monday afternoon from ACC media days in Greensboro, North Carolina, Golden jokingly called it the "kiss of death" because "every year they seem like they’ve been inaccurate."
In fact, he would be correct. The Hurricanes were also chosen in 2013, but they finished in a three-way tie for second behind the Duke Blue Devils.
A big hurdle standing in the way of UM’s success would be the main question entering the season: Who will play quarterback?
After redshirt senior Ryan Williams underwent surgery on a torn ACL in early April, redshirt freshman Kevin Olsen was deemed the frontrunner.
On Monday, Golden labeled it a four-man competition between Olsen, graduate transfer Jake Heaps and true freshmen Brad Kaaya and Malik Rosier. It will need to be "cut down quickly to two for the opener."
Golden remains unsure as to if and when Williams can return, though the fourth-year coach said Williams’ recovery is in the upper 1 percentile because of no setbacks.
As to why he feels more confident than previous years, Golden cited depth at positions such as wide receiver and cornerback.
"I think it’s fair," Golden said of the expectations. "Like anybody you’ve got to have a lot of things come together — confluence of health, getting in a rhythm and finding your identity early."