Miami has its flaws. Not the city. The city has beaches, great food, and no winter. But the University of Miami football team, which hasn’t been ranked in the preseason Amway Coaches Poll since 2010, has been left out yet again.

But this year, it’s a head scratcher.

Since Al Golden’s arrival, the Hurricanes have admirably overcome tough NCAA sanctions that hit the program in 2011. In 2013, for example, the program claimed nine wins for the first time since 2009. But there were struggles. The Hurricanes’ only big victory was over rival Florida, and they had losses to Florida State, Duke, Virginia Tech and lost their bowl game to Louisville. But the team’s 9-4 record is among the things showing Golden is moving in the right direction.

Miami has one of the best running backs in the country

Another thing is the talent. Miami boasts one of the best college football players in the country in running back Duke Johnson. Last year he rushed for 920 yards in eight games before suffering a year-ending ankle injury. If he stays healthy, Johnson, who will be the team’s offensive leader, is a potential Heisman Trophy candidate. He will be exceptionally key after the departure of three-year starting quarterback Stephen Morris.

Replacing Morris could be transfer Jake Heaps, who started his career at BYU in 2010, where he completed 57% of his passes for 2,316 yards and 15 touchdowns as a freshman. The former five-star recruit transferred to Kansas, sat out in 2012, and had a disappointing 2013 for the Jayhawks, completing just 49% of his passes with eight touchdowns and 10 interceptions. He decided to transfer again, and is competing for the starting job in Miami.