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Russell- Does national media hate the Miami Hurricanes?

Ari Russell

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(Photo by Mark LoMoglio/Icon Sportswire)

Sports Illustrated recently came up with their top 100 players for the 2017 college football season and the list is an intersting one. The thing that really stands out is that there is only one Miami Hurricane who made the list. This leads to one question, does the national media hate the Miami Hurricanes? 

Sure it’s a stretch to come up with this outcome, but it always seems that national outlets with some exceptions with individuals within these outlets seem to have this disdain for the football program. It makes you wonder if the program is still paying a price for their ways during the 80s and 90s.

Back to the list, let’s first give credit to Ahmmon Richards who was the only Hurricane to make the list at #56. Here is what SI had to say about the sophomore wide out:

To the extent that Richards needed to adjust to the higher level of competition in college last season, it did not seem to affect him much, if at all. No freshman recorded more receiving yards than Richards’s 934, a total good for sixth in program history among receivers of any class. This ranking may well be too low for Richards, a special talent with room to grow. Yet with no established successor to quarterback Brad Kaaya, it’s best to take a wait-and-see approach in evaluating Miami’s passing game. Richards can’t make plays if no one is able to consistently deliver him the ball.

It’s good to see the SI staff pay attention to the offensive side of the ball, where the one player who made this list has a huge question mark at this point at who will actually deliver him the ball. You would think RB Mark Walton would make this list, be it that he’s expected to be one of the best running backs in the ACC. Also with the question mark at QB, Walton is going to have to be a major part of that offense, meaning a lot of touches. If Richards is good enough to make the list, so should Walton.

The biggest snubs however on the defensive side of the ball. Where’s DT Kendrick Norton? Some scouts project him, if he were to leave after this season as high as a second round pick. Doesn’t that put him in the top 100? Where’s sophomore LB Shaq Quarterman? One of the leading tacklers on the team and the entire conference as a true freshman. He’s expected to have a huge season this year. Why didn’t he get any love? What about DE Chad Thomas? A guy who excelled under Manny Diaz’s defense and likely improve in his second season under the same system.

The analysis is suspect with regards to this list. Do they even know who Miami’s defensive line coach is? Craig Kuligowski, who while at Missouri from 2001-15 had 13 defensive lineman drafted into the NFL. That’s at Missouri! Clearly he can coach and develop talent. Not one single defensive lineman from Miami, on a team coached by Kuligowski? I think some folks didn’t do their homework.

Anyways it leads to the analysis, that people have a wait and see for anything, but for Miami it’s clearly wait and see and then wait and see again. Seems like they are always waiting for some sort of implosion or something. Miami seems to still be paying the price for their renegade insurgency that began in the 80s, when they dared to express themselves differently that what the establishment expected.

It’s quite the ironic twist. Miami’s swagger, which was so maligned for years, is one of the main reasons why the sport has grown so much. Miami Hurricanes were a made for TV program, and that’s where all this big money comes from. You would hope the national media would understand that, but clearly they don’t.

Born in the Nation’s Capital, Washington D.C., Ari Russell watched the rise of the 1980’s Miami Hurricanes and knew that he had to be part of the “U” someday. After graduating from Coral Gables, Ari rose through the ranks of the former XM Satellite Radio and then Sirius/XM as college football executive producer. He later spent 2 seasons as the publisher of the website “Beyond U Sports” focusing on major college football/basketball. Ari brings a great perspective on everything Miami, including the Dolphins to F.F.I.

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Miami Hurricanes

Former Canes coach Golden apparently ready for trial against school

Florida Football Insiders

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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

Florida Football Insiders

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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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