For the Miami Hurricanes, there will be a Labor Day opener, a November showdown with the defending national champion and two well-placed bye weeks.
The Hurricanes released a relatively balanced schedule that features seven home games and five road games on Wednesday. And when Miami kicks off its 2014 season, it will do so on national television against the team it faced most recently, Russell Athletic Bowl opponent Louisville.
Last month, Miami saw its most successful season in recent years end on a sour note after a 36-9 loss to the Cardinals, who will join the ACC later this year. The Hurricanes will get a chance to avenge that loss when they travel to face the new-look Cardinals on Sept. 1 in a game that is set to be featured in primetime on ESPN as part of the network’s Labor Day coverage.
Though former Louisville coach Charlie Strong has moved on to Texas and quarterback Teddy Bridgewater has declared for the upcoming NFL Draft, Miami will still face plenty of challenges at Louisville, where it lost 31-7 to the Cardinals in 2006, a team then coached by newly rehired Louisville coach Bobby Petrino.
The Hurricanes, who were 9-4 in 2013 and are coming off their first nine-win season since 2009, will have their biggest test of the season at home on Nov. 15 when defending national champion Florida State comes to Sun Life Stadium for the schools’ annual rivalry game.
This past season, Miami kept pace with the Seminoles in Tallahassee early and trailed by a touchdown at half before Florida State pulled away for a 41-14 win.
The Seminoles will come to South Florida having won four straight against Miami, including a 33-20 victory on the Hurricanes’ home field in 2012. The Hurricanes will get a bit of help from the schedule as they prepare for Florida State. The second of Miami’s two bye weeks is slated just before the Seminoles come to town.
Miami’s first open week will come before it faces another ACC rival, Virginia Tech. The Hurricanes are set to travel to Blacksburg for a Thursday night showdown against the Hokies on Oct. 23, and at that point, will not have played since an Oct. 11 game at home against Cincinnati.
The Hurricanes will play their home opener against Florida A&M on Sept. 6 and will have their ACC home opener against Duke on Sept. 27. Their other big non-conference game is a Sept. 20 showdown at Nebraska. Miami’s last game against the Cornhuskers came in the 2001 Rose Bowl, a 37-14 Hurricanes win that gave Miami its fifth national title.
Here’s the complete schedule:
Sept. 1 - at Louisville
Sept. 6 - Florida A&M
Sept. 13 - Arkansas State
Sept. 20 - at Nebraska
Sept. 27 - Duke
Oct. 4 - at Georgia Tech
Oct. 11 - Cincinnati
Oct. 23 - at Virginia Tech
Nov. 1 - North Carolina
Nov. 15 - Florida State
Nov. 22 - at Virginia
Nov. 29 - Pittsburgh
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