The Miami Hurricanes secondary approaches their season opener against Florida with some dissent within their ranks.
Miami lost not one but two members of that group in the past week.
Transfer portal giveth, transfer portal taketh away.
— Frankie5angels (@Frankie5angels2) August 14, 2019
The departure of Smith will hurt the depth at safety, but the Hurricanes still have plenty of talent left to fill the void. The 6-foot-2, 220 pound Smith was the biggest safety on the team but did not perform up to expectations.
Amari Carter and Robert Knowles were both ahead of him for the strong safety spot. Carter enters his junior season ready for a leadership role, having played 25 games for the Hurricanes already.
USC transfer Bubba Bolden is also in the mix for playing time. Bolden was a teammate of Tate Martell at Bishop Gorman in Las Vegas and the redshirt sophomore has tremendous upside but will need to get up to speed being a late arrival to the program. Once he settles in his talent is too great not to get extensive run.
At free safety Gurvan Hall appears to be the front runner to start the season. The highly recruited Hall is a sophomore from Palm Beach Gardens who saw action in 12 games last year and is poised for a much larger contribution this year.
Besides Smith the Hurricanes secondary depth took another hit, losing cornerback Nigel Bethel. Miami is a little thinner at the corner spot, Bethel was battling for the fourth cornerback position with Christian Williams and Te’Cory Couch.
#Canes lose a little depth at CB with the transfer of redshirt freshman Nigel Bethel. Miami scholarship CBs are now Trajan Bandy (Jr.), DJ Ivey (So.), Al Blades Jr. (So.), Christian Williams (Fr.) and Te’Cory Couch (Fr.) https://t.co/tx68GA7XzP
— Manny Navarro (@Manny_Navarro) August 16, 2019
The freshmen Williams and Couch, along with sophomore DJ Ivey will be key rotational pieces throughout the season.
Leading the way in the Hurricanes secondary is junior cornerback Trajan Bandy.
The Muddy Badger is one of the top corners in the ACC and owns one of the best recent moments for The U.
We’re giving you FOUR of our top Must See Moments from the past year on this #FourthofJuly! Get ready for THESE fireworks…
— ACC Digital Network (@theACCDN) July 4, 2018
Bandy really broke out in his sophomore season, notching career highs in just about every important defensive category.
His five “Turnover Chains” also led the team and Bandy earned a spot on the Jim Thorpe Award watch list.
Across from Bandy at the opposite corner will likely be Al Blades, Jr. who enters his sophomore season as a player on the rise.
Blades looks to continue the incredible family tradition at Miami and has all the physical and mental makeup to do so. He served as special teams captain twice last year and like his family who played here is a great vocal and emotional leader.
Ivey is another defensive back to watch, he played in 11 games last year mostly on special teams. With the departure of Bethel he slots in as the third cornerback on the depth chart.
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