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Despite optimism for Diaz era, Miami unranked in preseason coaches poll

Hurricanes will face top-10 test in season opener against Florida

Miami first-year head coach Manny Diaz blows his whistle during fall practice, July 29, 2019, in Coral Gables, Florida. The Hurricanes open the season Aug. 24 against the Florida Gators at Camping World Stadium in Orlando.

PEMBROKE PARK, Fla. – It seems Miami is going to need a statement win to earn the favor of its rival coaches this season.

The Hurricanes are unranked in the preseason coaches poll released Thursday.

Two Atlantic Coast Conference teams are ranked among the top 25, led by defending national champion and preseason favorite Clemson. But the Hurricanes, under first-year head coach Manny Diaz, didn't crack the top 25, instead falling into the "others receiving votes" category.

The lone ranked opponent on Miami's schedule is No. 8 Florida in the Aug. 24 opener in Orlando, leaving the Hurricanes few chances to make an impression among voters the rest of the way.

No. 22 Syracuse is the ACC's only other ranked team, but the Tigers and Orange are both in the Atlantic Division and don't face the Hurricanes in the regular season.

Miami's annual crossover opponent is Florida State, which is coming off its first losing season since 1976.

Top 25 Preseason Coaches Poll

No. 1Clemson
No. 2Alabama
No. 3Georgia
No. 4Oklahoma
No. 5Ohio State
No. 6 LSU
No. 7Michigan
No. 8Florida
No. 9Notre Dame
No. 10Texas
No. 11Texas A&M
No. 12Washington
No. 13Oregon
No. 14Penn State
No. 15 Utah
No. 16Auburn
No. 17 (tie)Wisconsin
No. 17 (tie)UCF
No. 19Iowa
No. 20Michigan State
No. 21 Washington State
No. 22Syracuse
No. 23Stanford
No. 24Iowa State
No. 25Northwestern

BOLD denotes opponents on Miami's schedule

Depending on how the early part of the season goes, Virginia Tech and Virginia could wind up ranked by the time they travel to Hard Rock Stadium in early October.

Virginia Tech received 64 votes and Virginia received 30 to Miami's 94.

Duke received 10 votes, while the Seminoles received four. Both teams play Miami in November.

Others Receiving Votes

Nebraska 152; Boise State 118; Mississippi State 111; Miami 94; Army 91; Kentucky 79; Virginia Tech 64; TCU 63; Southern California 47; Utah State 32; Fresno State 32; Virginia 30; Cincinnati 25; West Virginia 24; Memphis 24; Oklahoma State 20; South Carolina 15; N.C. State 12; Duke 10; Boston College 5; Florida State 4; Baylor 4; Appalachian State 4; North Texas 3; Houston 3; UCLA 2; Temple 2; Arizona State 2; Troy 1; Tennessee 1; Mississippi 1; Minnesota 1

The Hurricanes have recent history on their side when it comes to playing the Gators, who won 10 games last season under head coach Dan Mullen. Miami has won five of the last six meetings since the annual rivalry was discontinued after the 1987 season.

Diaz is one of the 65 Football Bowl Subdivision coaches who vote in the poll. So does Mullen, who hired Diaz as his defensive coordinator when he was at Mississippi State.

It's probably a safe bet Mullen would toss some votes Miami's way if the Hurricanes pull off an upset later this month at Camping World Stadium.