Jon Gruden: 2001 Miami Hurricanes Best College Football Team Ever

As an unabashed Canes fan, you know I’m not going to miss an opportunity to give some love to my Hurricanes, especially when it was prompted by somebody else. After Andre Johnson caught a touchdown prior to halftime of the Ravens-Texans Monday night game, analyst and former coach Jon Gruden began praising Miami.

Introducing what seemed to be a prepared piece by ESPN, Chucky said that the 2001 Miami team was the best college football team ever. He pointed out how 38 of the 89 players on the team were drafted, including 17 in the first round. They showed a team photo and spot-shadowed Andre Johnson and Ed Reed (both of whom were playing in the Monday night game) and mentioned Willis McGahee, who was also playing in the game. Other running backs on that Miami team were Frank Gore, Clinton Portis, and Najeh Davenport. In addition to Andre Johnson, Santana Moss, Jeremy Shockey, and Kellen Winslow II caught passes from Ken Dorsey. Defensive stars included Jonathan Vilma, D.J. Williams, Vince Wilfork, and Antrel Rolle and Sean Taylor as backups.

Gruden said he wished he had some of those players on his teams and that’s why he’s out of a job. Then he got in the ultimate line saying that team could win the NFC West this year. Of course that’s not true, but it’s funny and it shows how stacked Miami was. Now that we’ve gotten the sucking up out of the way, let’s dive into some real analysis.

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Texas Opens Search for New Defensive Coordinator … Manual Dexterity Required

With Florida hiring Texas “coach in waiting” Will Muschamp as their new head coach, the Longhorns are now in the market for a new defensive coordinator. And guess what folks? The position is open to all applicants! Andy Staples passed along the link from the Texas job board of the job ad and it’s pretty darn comprehensive.

The biggest joke from the ad is that it says the hours per week is 40 (variable). Right, show me a coach who works only 40 hours per week and I’ll show you someone who is looking for a new job.

They’re looking for someone with a Bachelor’s Degree, and specifically someone who has “Experience coaching in the NFL. Ability to project the image of the University of Texas and the UT Men’s Athletics Department with dignity and grace regardless of circumstances and environments. Excellent interpersonal and communication skills. Professional demeanor.”

Other requirements include a coach with 12 years of experience coaching in D-I college and seven years experience in the NFL. Working conditions are described as “Use of manual dexterity. Climbing of stairs. Climbing of ladders. Lifting and moving.” If you haven’t seen one of these jobs posted before, you should check it out. It’s quite amusing, and my guess is the new coach won’t have the type of success Muschamp did — he was pretty darn awesome.

Did Tim Tebow Break News of Florida Hiring Will Muschamp?

Florida went A-Rod/Scott Boras on the college football world Saturday evening when reports first emerged that they hired Will Muschamp as their new head coach. The news came out as the Heisman Trophy ceremony was going on, and most people probably learned of the development from the Bottom Line scroll on ESPN. More connected fans may have heard things before anyone else from … Tim Tebow’s twitter feed.

About an hour before the word appeared on the Bottom Line, Tebow tweeted “Welcome to the Gator family Coach Muschamp! You’ll soon find out why it’s great to be a Florida Gator! God bless and Go Gators!!!”

Considering how infrequently Tebow tweets, it was a surprise to see him breaking news on his account as if he were challenging this guy. Upon further review, sports site Saturday Down South reported the news before anyone else, well before Tebow’s tweet, but most people don’t realize that. Not that it really matters to most fans because they only care about who Florida hires, not who breaks the story. Still, it was funny to see Tebow share some inside news before most people had heard it.

It was also quite thoughtful of Florida to steal the spotlight from Auburn and Cam Newton by spoiling the Heisman ceremony. Nothing like some SEC ribbing by the Gators. Can you say revenge?

Will Al Golden Be Dedicated to Miami or Hope to Replace Joe Paterno?

Dream jobs. Everyone has them, most never get to experience them. When the USC head coaching job became available, Lane Kiffin ditched Tennessee to take the gig of his dreams. When the Michigan job became available, Les Miles remained at LSU where they raised his contract value. Now that he’s been hired by Miami to replace Randy Shannon, will Al Golden be dedicated to the U or hope to return to Penn State?

Golden is 41 years old and has coached at Temple the past five years. The name should be familiar for UCLA fans because Golden interviewed for the Bruins’ head coaching job in 2007 which went to Rick Neuheisel. Temple had gone 1-11, 2-9, and 0-11 in the three years preceding Golden’s tenure, and they went 1-11 in his first year on the job. The turnaround under Golden however was swift; the Owls went 4-8, 5-7, 9-4, and then 8-4 this year under Al. In 2009, they reached their first bowl game since 1979 (a loss to UCLA at the Eagle Bank Bowl).

Golden is a defensive specialist who has served as defensive coordinator at Virginia, and linebackers coach at BC and Penn State. He is said to be a tireless recruiter and one of the best in the country (he got players to Temple, right?). Turning around the program at Temple was termed nearly miraculous, but it does not guarantee success at Miami where coaches in the state of Florida and in the ACC are of a much higher quality than the MAC.

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Joe Paterno ‘I Can’t Hear You’ Interview Reminds Us He’s Getting Old

Make no mistake about it, what Joe Paterno has been able to do as the head football coach at Penn State is truly unbelievable.  I’ll be happy if I’m not drinking my meals through a straw a week before my 84th birthday, let alone still capable of coaching a football team that’s loaded with underclassmen to a 7-5 record.  JoePa obviously has some years of signal-calling left in him, but the signs of old age are quickly setting in — and I don’t mean his Coke bottle glasses.  Sports by Brooks called our attention to an interview Paterno did with Steve “The Big Dog” Duemig of WDAE-AM in Tampa last week, and let’s just say it’s a reminder that JoePa is almost 84.  Check it out:

Come to think of it, that wasn’t much of an interview at all.  Maybe skip the radio and phone interviews from now on?  Again, no one respects Paterno more than I do, but this is absolutely hilarious.  If Saturday Night Live were to plan a skit about JoePa, they couldn’t possibly come up with something better.

Why Andrew Luck Should Win Heisman Trophy Over Cam Newton

I understand the concept of integrity means little to many of you. I understand that the idea of amateurism means even less. But for some people, most notably the Heisman Trophy Trust, those two ideals are incredibly important and they’re the reasons why Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck should win the Heisman Trophy over Cam Newton, who was the most outstanding player in college football.

Because most people don’t bother to do the research and understand what the significance of certain awards are, here is the Heisman Trust’s Mission Statement:

The Heisman Memorial Trophy annually recognizes the outstanding college football player whose performance best exhibits the pursuit of excellence with integrity. Winners epitomize great ability combined with diligence, perseverance, and hard work. The Heisman Trophy Trust ensures the continuation and integrity of this award. The Trust, furthermore, has a charitable mission to support amateur athletics and to provide greater opportunities to the youth of our country.

Cam Newton was an incredible player for Auburn and led them to a 13-0 season and appearance in the National Championship Game. Newton threw for 28 touchdowns and only six interceptions while rushing for 1,409 yards and 20 touchdowns. He was a one-man wrecking crew and the best player in college football. The problem is his pursuit of excellence was not done with integrity, and it undermined amateur athletics.

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Cam Newton Needs to Show Humility

Auburn quarterback and Heisman frontrunner Cam Newton obviously didn’t learn anything from the backlash against LeBron James’ “Decision.” In an interview with ESPN’s Chris Fowler, Newton stole some of the words right out of James’ mouth.

“I felt that as a whole Auburn possessed, you know, what’s best for Cam Newton,” Newton said in response to a question regarding why he chose Auburn over Mississippi State. You’ve got to love a 21-year-old college student who refers to himself in the third person. And that was just one of the many times during the interview Newton referred to himself in that way.

When asked if he had any conversations with anyone at Mississippi State before signing with Auburn, Newton took the LeBronisms to the next level. He expressed a great amount of respect for Mississippi head football coach Dan Mullen, whom he called when he made his decision.

“I wanted to tell him how I really felt about him, and I told him, but I also told him that I was going to take my talents to, you know, Auburn,” Newton said. Really? After all the heat James took last summer, why would anyone else let those words escape their mouth?

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