The No. 13 Miami Hurricanes held their final fully padded practice of the week on Wednesday as they prepare for their road trip to No. 24 Texas A&M.
Miami (2-0) will face its first true test of the season at TAMU, after earning comfortable wins over Bethune-Cookman and Southern Miss.
Texas A&M (1-1) will be motivated to bounce back after a stunning 17-14 loss in College Station to Appalachian State.
Saturday’s game is an opportunity for Mario Cristobal to earn a statement win over Jimbo Fisher, who owns a 7-1 record against Miami, which dates back to his time as the head coach at Florida State.
Kickoff for the game is slated for 9 p.m. EST and the game will be televised on ESPN.
The latest betting line from Caesars Sportsbook has the Aggies as a 5.5 point favorite.
The last meeting between Texas A&M and Miami was in 2008 with the Hurricanes earning a 41-23 victory.
Read on for news & notes from Cristobal’s media session on Wednesday.
– DL Akheem Mesidor is expected to be a full go for the Texas A&M game after being held out for precautionary reasons against Southern Miss. “He looks good,” Cristobal said. “He looked good in practice today, so we expect a full speed player on Saturday.”
– OL Zion Nelson and RB Jaylan Knighton took 100 percent of their reps during practice this week and will be a full go this week as well.
– Cristobal on how Miami has practiced this week: “Are we encouraged by the consistent progress? I would say yes. The physicality that we played with in practice, I think we are improving. We are improving with technique and fundamentals. I thought the competitiveness of two minute drill today was really good.”
– Cristobal on TAMU’s defensive line: “They really have a lot of big, powerful, explosive guys with a lot of length and a lot of range. They are explosive and twitchy, which is a unique combination. On the edges they have guys that are 280 or 290 and they are physical up front and they knock back the line of scrimmage and their defense has been very impressive with everything that we have seen on tape.”
– Cristobal on his takeaways from what Appalachian State did to Texas A&M’s offense: “They are extremely talented. They have played really good football. They didn’t have their best day. Some times in offensive football, when you are off—and you have to credit Appalachian State for playing a great game—those two things collided. They didn’t have their typical day, but that masked the reality that they are really explosive and talented offense with world class speed all over the place.”
– Cristobal mentioned some young players are gaining traction towards earning more playing time, highlighting DL Jabari Ishmael, DT Ahmad Moten, CB Khamauri Rodgers, and Markeith Williams. “You start plugging those guys in on special teams, but they are also getting reps with the reserves and they are showing that they are picking up the systems rather well. You may be able to count on them sooner rather than later.”
– Cristobal on the type of atmosphere he expects at Texas A&M: “They do an unbelievable job supporting their football program. It is one of the premier atmospheres on game day.”
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