Our series taking a look at the most important game on the schedule this year for each ACC school continues today with Miami. For those of you just tuning in, this is a look at which games will reveal the most or have the biggest impact on the 2012 race.
Most important game: at Boston College, Sept. 1
Why it’s important: This game was chosen based on the assumption that Miami has a better chance of becoming bowl eligible than it does winning the Coastal Division this year. The Thursday night game against Virginia Tech might be the most exciting game on the schedule (great game last year), but it probably won’t carry much weight in the ACC race, unless the Canes are playing the role of spoiler. Truth is, just reaching the six-win mark isn’t going to be easy for the Canes, but if they’re going to get there, they have to win on the road -- the schedule doesn’t allow otherwise, as four of their first six games are on the road. Miami has to win the winnable games, starting with Boston College.
Much like I wrote for the Eagles’ most important game, this one will set the tone for the season. Don't forget that part of the criteria for selecting these games is which one will reveal the most, and with only four starters returning on offense, we should learn a lot about Miami from the opener. It will show us what Miami’s new starting quarterback is capable of, how the line looks with three new starters, and what the running game looks like without Lamar Miller. Miami starts the season with road trips to two opponents it lost to last year in BC and Kansas State. Can Al Golden improve upon those results in Year 2?