The Mario Cristobal Show: Episode 3 -- Canes Show Resilience and Look Ahead to Bethune-Cookman

The Mario Cristobal Show: Episode 3 -- Canes Show Resilience and Look Ahead to Bethune-Cookman

Peter Ariz

Fresh off a resounding 48-33 victory against Texas A&M, the Miami Hurricanes are a team radiating confidence and resilience. This past weekend at Hard Rock Stadium wasn't just another game; it was a statement win that checked all the boxes. It had everything: a roaring crowd, homage to the 1983 National Championship team, and a Miami football team that showed grit, resilience, and an undeniable will to win.

Coach Mario Cristobal Reflects on the Win​

In a recent sit-down on the Mario Cristobal Show, head coach Mario Cristobal was quick to highlight the significance of the win for his players, the university, and the community at large. The atmosphere at Hard Rock Stadium was electric, propelled by both a squad that "kept coming" and a crowd fully invested in the action. Cristobal stressed the resilience his team showed, particularly after a few early miscues, and credited their preparation and mindset.

Blueprint for Success​

The team's grit doesn't stem from mere lip service. Cristobal emphasized that "you can read all the self-help books you want, but if you don't create difficult scenarios in practice, you're not training them [the players] for it." This philosophy was evident in how the Hurricanes overcame adversity, echoing Cristobal's blueprint for success which has always revolved around hard work and investment.

Defensive Impact​

Defensively, the Hurricanes managed to fluster Texas A&M's QB Conner Weigman, registering two interceptions and a fumble recovery. Cristobal lauded his defense's performance, stating they "just brought it" and crediting defensive coordinator Coach Lance Guidry for excellent scheming.

Offensive Versatility​

On the offensive end, the Hurricanes showcased their versatility. After rushing for 250 yards in their first game, they threw for over 300 yards and five touchdowns against Texas A&M. Quarterback Tyler Van Dyke's calm and decisive nature stood out, further illustrating his grasp of the offensive scheme and the game at large.

Special Moments and Key Players​

Cristobal was particularly effusive in his praise for players who stepped up in big moments. From Kam Kitchens' timely interception to Jaden Davis' crucial stops, these were individual bright spots in a thoroughly team-oriented win. Jacolby George also received notable mention, particularly for his resilience after early miscues.

Tackling and Defense: An Improved Picture​

The Hurricanes are showing positive signs defensively, particularly in tackling. Cristobal highlighted that this improvement is a product of focused practice: "Thud is a real thing," he said. By emphasizing proper tackling in practice, the Hurricanes are able to carry that physicality into games. "Practicing preparation becomes game reality," Cristobal added.

Lessons in Resilience​

Looking back on the previous year's loss to Texas A&M, Cristobal underscored the newfound resilience within his squad. "What really stands out is a true commitment to the standard and improving," said the coach. Last year, a muffed punt return would've been demoralizing, but this year the team responded by rallying on defense and keeping their heads high.

Impact Players​

When asked about key contributors, Cristobal was quick to mention safeties James Williams and Kam Kitchens. "They cover a lot of ground and they're really physical," he noted, adding that Williams, in particular, played as good of a game as you can play. "He plays the game the way it's supposed to be played: physical and hard," Cristobal enthused.

A Look Ahead to Bethune Cookman​

While the victory over Texas A&M was a significant feat, Cristobal and his team are already setting their sights on the next challenge, a Thursday night game against Bethune Cookman. "Their defense is very disruptive," warned Cristobal. The Hurricanes' coach also emphasized the importance of maintaining a high standard of play against a team that would love to claim a win over Miami. "We're nowhere near playing as good as we need to play, and we need to keep getting better," he said.

The Recruiting Angle​

In a brief note on recruiting, Cristobal revealed that the atmosphere during the Texas A&M game had an immediate impact. "Every possible ticket for recruits was eaten up," he stated, adding that these young talents saw firsthand the thrilling environment and explosive plays that define Miami Hurricane football.
The road ahead is filled with opportunity and challenges, and for Cristobal, the focus remains clear: "Let's keep working, let's get all the noise and all the praise out of the way and get right back to work." Indeed, as Miami prepares for their game against Bethune Cookman, that workmanlike ethos could make all the difference.

Looking Ahead​

With momentum in their favor, the Hurricanes are fully focused on their next game against Bethune-Cookman. Despite the short week, the mood in the locker room is one of eagerness and a collective yearning for improvement. Cristobal acknowledged this sentiment stating, "they're feeling an addiction to betterment and improvement."

Comments (4)

@Peter Ariz appreciate the work you're doing. I prefer reading the write ups.

You were the reason I came to the site back in the day. Good to have you back and I hope you're still pursuing your dreams.