By DAN HAUSER
The University of Miami football program has been one of the best and most successful programs in the nation over the past 3 decades.
Ever since Howard Schnellenberger came in and kept the local Miami kids “home” to play for the home town team the success on the field has been like that of the Notre Dame’s, Michigan’s, and Penn State’s. Since 1980 the Hurricanes have won 9 conference championships, 5 national championships, 15 bowl victories, and 2 Heisman trophy winners.
Also in that period of time the Hurricanes had an NCAA record 58 game home winning streak and sent a player to the NFL an NCAA record 14 consecutive years in the first round alone. Pull up any given NFL roster and it will be loaded with former All-American ‘Canes.
So with all the success that this program has had in the past 30 years, why are they now resorting to this?
These posters have been plastered all over the school’s gyms and wellness centers. The same school that produced All-Americans like Michael Irvin, Bernie Blades, Andre Johnson, Ray Lewis, Ed Reed, and Willis McGahee, just to name a few, are now calling for anyone at the school that is at least six foot one and two hundred and thirty pounds to come and try out for an offensive line position.
The once honored and storied “U” found on the side of the helmets can now be yours simply by meeting those height and weight requirements and not because you have earned the right to wear it. Can you imagine if a sign like this would have been put up in the late 80’s and early 90’s? Well actually it never would have happened because of the talent pool being brought in. But if it had guys like Bernie Blades would have lit these “scrubs” up just for putting on the helmet and pads and trying to play for “The U”. Oh how the mighty have fallen.
Now let me get off my high horse for a minute. I know that all programs accept walk on’s. Walk on’s have always been apart of the college game. However, a program like this should not need to resort to something like this. Now if this were say FAU or even our neighbors down the street at FIU then maybe it wouldn’t be so bad. But this is The U! This is a program that for decades have known they are better than you and will remind you of it for sixty minutes as they are shoving your faces into the ground and flaunting it all the way. This is “Swagger U” not some start up D-1 team who is trying to get a program started an on the map. They are already on the map.
As a Hurricanes fan I am hoping that the gentleman that they are looking for are for the practice squad or that they pan out to be great football players that can help the program out. It just doesn’t seem like something that The University of Miami should have to resort to doing. For the time being though all we as ‘Canes fans can do is wait and see.
Get more great sports analysis over at Daily Shootout.