The most asked question after the 41-8 romping over #Notre Dame is if the University of #miami is back. According to Tim Reynolds of the Associated Press, senior leading receiver Braxton Berrios said postgame,"The U is back...they can't say its a fluke anymore." Reynolds also quoted sophomore linebacker Shaquille Quarterman, saying he wouldn't go as far as to say that the University of Miami is back, recognizing there's still work to be done, "Nah, we still need to get a ring." The jury is still out on these Hurricanes, but it's safe to say that the University of Miami is back and will be around for years to come.

Rough Beginnings

In the run-up to the 2017 football season, uncertainty at multiple positions: quarterback and cornerback, overshadowed the true talent that was returning.

A lackluster start against a poor Bethune Cookman team that put together more than a couple productive drives than most would’ve liked, left many to ask Brad Kaaya on twitter why he left. Hurricane Irma imposed its will over the region, relocating the team and forcing the Hurricanes to retreat from their common rituals such as healthy diets, workouts and most importantly game experience. Coming off the extended bye week you could tell the team still wasn’t in midseason form. Toledo had fans biting their nails up until halftime gathering huge chunk plays, something this team is still susceptible to. The Duke game went well, setting up the first test of the season vs. Florida State University. This would show if Miami has a chance to return to the glorified form of years past. Despite barely scraping out a win against the Seminoles, it demonstrated to the fan base and country that this team might've turned a corner by winning one-possession games they have lost so often before.

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Hitting their stride

Respect is the driving factor in the hearts and minds inside the program. The University of Miami was undefeated and ranked at No. 10 in the first release of the College Football Playoff [VIDEO] rankings this year, a slap in the face for a program that now poses the strongest strength of record in the country. The overriding factor that the doubters keep piggybacking on is the unimpressive victories against lower-level competition and no road wins against plus .500 teams. The University of Miami had a chance to right their wrongs with two games against top 15 competition, Virginia Tech and Notre Dame. After the Virginia Tech game, the country was put on notice, the pundits still doubted though, ranking Miami No. 7 in the CFB Playoff Poll.

In the run-up to the biggest game of the season, Miami vs. Notre Dame, the University of Miami had a few moments that signaled the U may indeed be back. College GameDay was on campus and had the show’s highest rating of the season.

Miami clinched the ACC Coastal Division Championship hours before thumping then-No. 3 ranked Notre Dame. Keep this in mind Notre Dame came into the contest averaging 41.3 points per game, 324.8 rush yards per game, 495.1 yards of total offense and seven total turnovers. They left Hard Rock Stadium with eight points, 109 rushing yards, 261 total yards and four turnovers. If that performance against the supposed offensive juggernaut of Notre Dame wasn’t enough to launch Miami into the top four, hate still exists against the program. A familiar feeling to those old Miami days signaling a clear suggestion that the U is indeed back.

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