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Miami, Utah schedule neutral site game to open 2027 season

Matt Connollyby:Matt Connolly07/08/24

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Miami will open the 2027 season against a big-time out of conference foe. The Hurricanes will face Utah to kick off the 2027 season, it was announced on Monday.

The ACC vs. Big 12 matchup will be played in Las Vegas at Allegiant Stadium. The game date, time and TV network will be announced at a later date.

“We are excited to kick off the 2027 season against Utah in the Vegas Kickoff Classic,” Miami Athletics Director Dan Radakovich said in a statement. “It not only gives our program an opportunity to play a great non-conference opponent on a national stage, but also gives our fans the chance to cheer on the Hurricanes in a world-class venue at a destination location.”

The game will be the ESPN Events’ 2027 Vegas Kickoff Classic. It will be the third Vegas Kickoff Classic.

Arizona and BYU faced off in the Vegas Kickoff Classic in 2021, and USC and LSU will meet in the Vegas Kickoff Classic on Sept. 1, 2024.

John Saccenti, who is the executive director of the Vegas Kickoff Classic, also spoke about the event.

“One of the great things about college football is that there are still first-time matchups like this one to capture the attention of fans across the nation,” he said. “We have a frequent visitor to our city in Utah playing a national brand like Miami for the first time ever at one of the world’s greatest football venues.”

Greg McElroy believes Miami could ‘easily’ win double-digit games in 2024

As for the 2024 version of the Miami Hurricanes, ESPN analyst Greg McElroy is high on Mario Cristobal’s team.

Miami showed some gradual improvement over two years under Mario Cristobal. Now, per Greg McElroy, the ‘U could be in line for just their second 10-win or better finish since the early 2000s.

McElroy discussed a possible bounce back by the Hurricanes during a recent episode of ‘Always College Football’. In his opinion, Miami was far better than being just one game over .500 in 2023. That’s why a higher win total, which the odds also reflect, makes perfect sense to him in 2024.

“I look at Miami’s 7-6 win total from a year ago. 7-6 – pretty decent year. There was a lot of progress made as we just discussed but it felt like there was a little more meat on the bone,” McElroy said. “Well, Vegas anticipates a significant bounce back from Miami. 9.5 is their win total – up from seven a year ago.”

“I don’t think last year’s record is reflective of just how capable that team was,” opined McElroy. “Granted, tons of mistakes and they oftentimes beat themselves.”