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Miami Hurricanes

Hurricanes coach Manny Diaz still searching for offensive coordinator

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Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Still not done. That’s the word on Wednesday morning from Miami Hurricanes coach Manny Diaz about his vacant offensive coordinator position.

And while reports were that he had zeroed in on hiring former Houston coach and Texas quarterback Major Applewhite to run his offense, Diaz would not confirm or deny that this morning.

Appearing as guest with 560 WQAM in Miami on “The Joe Rose Show,” Diaz spoke only generally about the new important hire:

“Wait…I thought ‘sources said’ we’ve hired about six different guys,” Diaz joked with the show.

“There’s a couple of things you learn. This is a process that you gotta see it through…You’re not just hiring one guy. You want to make sure there’s great alignment among the staff…. And you got to be respectful of people’s timetables at the time that it can happen.”

He continued, “I know everyone is straining their thumb holding it down for their Twitter feed. But, it’s coming. I promise.”

It has been a whirlwind couple of weeks where are coach Mark Richt abruptly retired, or was forced out, depending on who you listen to. Diaz was then suddenly brought back just a couple of weeks after taking over, as the Temple head coach.

Being Miami’s defensive coordinator for the last three years, everyone realizes this is an important offensive hire for the new boss in Coral Gables.

That would include our Matt Zemek, who wrote about Diaz’s introductory press conference and how he unmistakably understands that it is about the offense right now at “The U.”

Clearly, during Wednesday morning’s interview Diaz is hinting that an announcement is upcoming, and he also reiterated how important that will be for recruiting purposes over the next three weeks before the important National Signing Day coming up.

It had been reported by a Canes fan site/blog, that Applewhite, who was fired by Houston after their bowl loss two weeks ago, was officially coming.

Obviously it is still not done a few days later. So, at best that was premature and may be, completely wrong. And that makes you wonder if Applewhite can’t come to an agreement with his former school, Houston, on how much money he would still be owed if he’s taking the Miami coordinator position?

Or is there some other “hangup?”

The Hurricanes and Diaz were reportedly also seriously considering former North Carolina coach Larry Fedora for the offense of coordinator slot, but he took his name out of the running mid-week last week.

Now we wait to see if Diaz does follow through with Applewhite or if there is some other unknown name, that is about to emerge to be the play-caller for the Hurricanes next season?

Miami Hurricanes

Former Canes coach Golden apparently ready for trial against school

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USA Today Sports

Former Miami Hurricanes head coach Al Golden is apparently about to have his day in court, while trying to recoup what he says is multi-millions of dollars that the University still owes him from firing him 5 years ago.

Miami Herald writer and columnist Barry Jackson had more on Monday evening that there apparently will not be a settlement by the school with the man that coached them for parts of five seasons in the 2010s.

Golden is seeking in excess of $3 million for what he says is compensation per his contract that he was owed when Miami terminated him in October of 2015 after a humiliating 58 – 0 lost to Clemson. The University says that Golden has been paid what the contract required.

As Jackson reported, there have already been depositions on both sides, including with Miami athletic director Blake James. And both James and Golden will be testifying in the civil suit about what went wrong and how it has not been rectified for almost three years, since the dispute started.

Golden came to Miami after having turned around the Temple football program, but only went 32 – 25 in his four plus seasons. He contends in a chain of emails that were obtained by the media recently, that the University mislead him about the Nevin Shapiro payment scandal and the punishments that Miami was going to receive for scholarship losses and a bowl ban.

He further contends that he asked for tough opponents like Wisconsin and Michigan State to be pushed back on the Canes schedule early in his tenure, while they were in the middle of the sanctions. However, that  James would not relent, thereby, making it much tougher for Miami to compete and win.

The University has had no comment on the possible suit going to trial. Golden’s lawyer told the media recently that they are anxious to have their day in front of a judge and jury.

Golden has been a position coach in the NFL with the Detroit Lions the last two years. Meanwhile, Miami is still trying to find their footing with coach Manny Diaz coming off a dismal 6-7 season where they lost their last three games. That included a humiliating 14-0 shutout loss to Louisiana Tech in the Independence Bowl.

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Hurricanes name College Hall of Famer Ed Reed Chief of Staff

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Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

The Miami Hurricanes are hoping to reestablish their winning ways, and coach Manny Diaz is starting 2020 by reaching back to a prominent member of their recent past to help them.

Diaz and the school announced Thursday afternoon that former All-American, National Champion and College and NFL Hall of Fame safety, Ed Reed, will be coming aboard as a newly-created “Chief of Staff” position for Hurricanes football:

As the school’s release said, Reed “will be responsible in advisory role of all aspects of the football program including strategic planning, quality control, operations, player evaluation and player Development among other duties.

Diaz said in the statement,

“We are thrilled to welcome Ed back to Coral Gables,” Diaz said. “He is not only one of the most decorated players in Miami football history but also a devoted Cane who cares deeply about this program. All of our players, coaches and staff will be fortunate to tap into his experience, knowledge and passion on a regular basis.”  

This hire comes on the heels of Miami apparently botching the hiring in a similar role of former star RB  from the 80’s Alonzo Highsmith earlier this month. Highsmith negotiated with Diaz and AD Blake James about looking to come back to Coral Gables after having been in a similar role with the Cleveland Browns in the NFL this past year. Alas, they could not agree. Highsmith has since been fired after the Browns fired GM John Dorsey and shook up their front office.

As for the “Chief of Staff” position, numerous college programs, including Clemson Alabama and Georgia have a similar positions to aid and assist the head coach with the day-to-day administration of program.

You cannot find a more decorated Cane willing to help, as Reed was arguably the best safety in college football in the 2000s. Miami posted a 23 – 1 record over his final two seasons (’00-’01) and he was part of the 2001 BCS Championship team that finished 11-1 and destroyed Nebraska in the Rose Bowl.

Reed with a consensus First-team All-American in 2000 and 2001 and set the Hurricanes record for interceptions with 21 before leaving Coral Gables.

Reed was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2018 for his accomplishments.

Reed was later a first-round pick of the Baltimore Ravens in 2002, playing at 11 sasons with them before playing his final year with the Texans and the Jets. He is a former NFL Defensive Player of the Year and was an All-Pro six times. Reed was just inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame year ago.

Read was not quoted in the release by the Hurricanes on Thursday afternoon.

However, he did participate earlier during Super Bowl week in Miami with former Hurricanes legendary coach Jimmy Johnson in a special program from Fox Sports with other famous Hurricane alumni like Michael Irvin.

The program called “The ReUnion” dealt with Miami trying to regain the winning ways and dominance of the 80s and 90s.

Miami stumbled to a 6-6 finish and then was embarrassed to end Diaz’s first season with a 14-0 shutout loss to Louisiana Tech in the Independence Bowl.

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