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#pounditSunday, May 22, 2022

Articles tagged: Miami Hurricanes football

Mario Cristobal heading to Miami but not for reason you think

Mario Cristobal in an Oregon shirt

Mario Cristobal and his Oregon Ducks pulled off a big win in the Civil War rivalry game against Oregon State on Saturday, and Cristobal delivered some somber news afterwards.

The Miami native said he would be flying from Oregon to Florida after the game to visit his mother, who he said was ill.

Cristobal is in his fourth season as Oregon’s head coach and has the Ducks 10-2 after a 38-29 win over the Beavers. The 51-year-old was an all-conference player at Miami from 1989-1992. He was a graduate assistant there from 1998-2000 and an offensive position coach from 2004-2006. He coached FIU in Miami from 2007-2012. All in all, Cristobal has strong Miami ties.

Some will question the timing of Cristobal’s trip, especially considering recent reports. Oregon fans though will take him at his word and offer prayers for his family.

Oregon is set to face Utah next week in the Pac-12 Championship Game. They will be seeking revenge following their bad loss to the Utes last week.

Photo: Nov 23, 2019; Tempe, AZ, USA; Oregon Ducks head coach Mario Cristobal against the Arizona State Sun Devils at Sun Devil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Miami boosters want team to pry away prominent Pac-12 coach?

Mario Cristobal in an Oregon shirt

Boosters for the University of Miami may have a head coaching target in mind, and it does not matter that he is already employed.

Five Reason Sports Network reported Saturday that major boosters tied to the university are pushing the administration to try to pry away head coach Mario Cristobal from the Oregon Ducks. Cristobal is probably the biggest fish in the Pac-12 right now after leading the No. 11-ranked Ducks this season to a 9-2 record, which leads the conference.

As for the Hurricanes, they have stumbled to a 6-5 record this season under third-year coach Manny Diaz. The Hurricanes also just fired athletic director Blake James, which could be a signal that a coaching change is next.

The link for Cristobal is obvious. He is a Miami native and was a four-year letterman for the Hurricanes during his playing career. Cristobal played on two of Miami’s national title teams in 1989 and in 1991 and also began his coaching career with them in 1998 as a graduate assistant followed by stints as the tight ends coach and then the offensive line coach for the Hurricanes.

Additionally, Miami probably offers a bit more prestige and excitement for Cristoabl than Oregon, especially if he can be the native son who restores the program to its winning ways. It’s almost as if Cristobal makes too sense for the Hurricanes. That is unless they are eyeing an even bigger name.

Photo: Nov 23, 2019; Tempe, AZ, USA; Oregon Ducks head coach Mario Cristobal against the Arizona State Sun Devils at Sun Devil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Ed Reed has brutal quote on state of Miami program

Ed Reed in a hat

The Miami Hurricanes have a proud and distinguished group of alumni, and most of them are disgusted with the state of the football program. They’re not afraid to say so, either.

Perhaps more damning, however, is when a current staff member is willing to comment. Ed Reed, a Miami legend, currently serves as chief of staff to Hurricanes coach Manny Diaz. That didn’t stop Reed from commenting on the low standards at Miami in an interview with ESPN’s “College GameDay.”

“The standard — I’m not going to get into that part right now, like, the standard’s not even close to where it used to be, to be honest,” Reed said, via Nick Kosko of 247 Sports. “Our standard was well above, because we weren’t individuals. We were truly a team. The individual is put on the back burner for the brothers.”

The implication is that the unity Reed is talking about doesn’t exist right now. Of course, the likes of Reed ensured that Miami had elite talent in the late 1990s and early 2000s.

Diaz doesn’t look very secure in his role as Miami’s head coach, and boosters are starting some pretty wild rumors about possible replacements. If Reed is willing to say something like this, though, the writing has to be on the wall for the coach.

Photo: Nov 24, 2019; Atlanta, GA, USA; Former Baltimore Ravens safety Ed Reed is shown on the sideline before the Atlanta Falcons game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

Miami loses to Florida State on violation of spike rule

Miami tries to spike the ball

Miami lost to Florida State 31-28 on Saturday evening in Tallahassee, Fla. and the game ended on a violation of the spike rule.

Hurricanes quarterback Tyler Van Dyke completed a 4th-and-10 pass to Charleston Rambo for 19 yards, taking the ball to the Miami 44 with two seconds left. Miami raced to get set up for a spike play and executed it, but there was one problem: they didn’t have enough time for a spike.

The NCAA announced a rule change in 2013 where they established a rule regarding spikes. A minimum of three seconds are needed on the clock for a team to be eligible to spike the ball. If there are fewer than three seconds, the rule states that there is not enough time to run multiple plays.

Had Miami been aware of the rule, they would have run a final play — perhaps a Hail Mary — to try and win the game. But it seems neither the coaches, players, nor announcers knew about the rule. At least the officials did.

The Hurricanes pulling out the victory on their final play would have been unlikely, but it’s not like we haven’t seen teams complete Hail Mary passes.

Kirk Herbstreit rips Miami over management of football program

Kirk Herbstreit

Kirk Herbstreit offered a fairly thorough takedown of Miami’s football program, and particularly the school’s handling of it, on Saturday’s edition of “College GameDay.”

Herbstreit discussed the state of the Miami program and the Hurricanes’ inability to win consistently despite lofty expectations. The ESPN analyst blamed a lack of cohesion and vision between the school’s administration and athletic department, and questioned whether the administration even cares about the football program.

“You look at the powerhouse programs — Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State — president, AD, head coach. Same vision,” Herbstreit said. “They’re aligned in their vision for what needs to happen. Recruiting, budget, staff, whatever it needs, that’s what it takes. Miami doesn’t have that.

“I don’t think it matters who the head coach is. Until you get a president, an AD, and a coach together on the same page, I guess football doesn’t matter. It matters to the alums, to the brotherhood at the U, but I don’t know if it matters to the people making decisions at Miami.”

Most Miami fans will be fine with Herbstreit’s comments, as they’re even more frustrated than he is. The Hurricanes are still a big program and they recruit well. On paper, they should be annual ACC contenders, but it never seems to work out that way. They’re 15-12 in two-plus seasons under Manny Diaz, and some of the reports about the team have not been flattering. Herbstreit may well have a point about the rot starting from the top.

Alabama brutally trolled Miami with official victory poster

Nick Saban

The Alabama football Twitter account is known for its trolling, but they might have set a new standard for themselves on Monday.

Alabama produces an official game win poster for each victory with a summary of the score and key performers. It might also include a slogan, as it did Monday. In rather brutal fashion, the Crimson Tide mocked Miami’s famous “It’s all about the U” slogan after their 44-13 win.

That’s about as devastating as it gets. Alabama can back it up, though. After all, they’ve only lost eight games since the start of the College Football Playoff era. They’re going to hear about it no matter what on the rare occasions they lose.

As for Miami, they clearly have a long way to go before they can be counted among college football’s elite again. This might actually hurt more than the turnover chain incident Saturday.

Video: Miami giving back turnover chain after reversed call is hilariously sad

Miami turnover chain box

The Miami Hurricanes have already produced what may prove to be the most depressing sequence of events of the 2021 college football season.

The first half already went terribly for the Hurricanes as they faced Alabama to open their season. The Crimson Tide jumped out to a 27-0 first half lead, and Hurricanes quarterback D’Eriq King had to be checked out for an injury.

Still, when Alabama running back Roydell Williams’ fumble was ruled a Miami recovery, the Hurricanes had to stick with tradition. Out came the notorious turnover chain, which was placed around the neck of Kamren Kinchens in honor of his fumble recovery.

There was just one problem: a replay review made it clear that Williams had recovered his own fumble, and the play was overturned. That led to the incredibly depressing sequence in which Miami had to return the turnover chain to its shoebox.

There may not be a more hilariously sad sequence all year. The fact that the Hurricanes were down 27-0 only exacerbates it.

The turnover chain was an awesome innovation when Miami introduced it back in 2017. Since then, the team hasn’t had much success, and the chain has both been copied by numerous other schools and turned into a target for trolling. Maybe it’s time to let it rest, or at least save it for a bigger occasion.

Former Miami teammate charged with 2006 murder of Bryan Pata

Former Miami football player Bryan Pata was murdered in a shooting back in 2006, and it took police 15 years to make an arrest in the previously unsolved case.

Rashaun Jones, a former defensive back who was teammates with Pata at Miami, was arrested by Miami-Dade police on Thursday and charged with the murder of Pata, according to The Miami Herald. The 35-year-old had long been considered a suspect in the case, as he had once gotten into a physical altercation with Pata and dated Pata’s girlfriend.

Pata was shot in the back of the head outside his apartment complex near the Miami campus on Nov. 7, 2006. He had practiced with the Hurricanes earlier that day. There were no direct witnesses to the shooting.

Pata, a former defensive end, was a rising star before he was murdered. He was expected to be drafted early in the 2007 NFL Draft.

D’Eriq King suffered torn ACL against Oklahoma State

Deriq King

Miami quarterback D’Eriq King was helped to the locker room after he suffered a leg injury during his team’s loss to Oklahoma State in the Cheez-It Bowl on Tuesday, and unfortunately the injury was serious.

Miami announced on Thursday that King tore his ACL and will undergo surgery. The good news is the school said King is expected to be recovered in time for fall training camp.

King’s right knee appeared to buckle just before he was tripped and brought down while scrambling against the Cowboys. He remained on his back and was visibly in pain while trainers tended to him. He initially went to the medical tent before being taken to the locker room.

A transfer from Houston, King was 10/13 for 113 yards and a touchdown pass in the game. He recently announced he will return to Miami next season, and it sounds like he should be ready by the time the season kicks off.

D’Eriq King announces he will return to Miami next season

Deriq King

The Miami Hurricanes will be in excellent hands for the second season in a row.

Quarterback D’Eriq King announced on social media Saturday that he will return to the Miami program for next season.

Miami is 8-2 this season, which is the program’s best winning percentage since 2003. A lot of that is due to the strong play from King.

The Houston transfer has gone 200/315 (63.5 percent) for 2,570 yards, 22 touchdowns and five interceptions in his first season with Miami. He has also rushed for 520 and four touchdowns.

King is eligible to play next season because the NCAA said fall athletes would not have their seasons count against them for eligibility due to COVID-19. 2021 will mark King’s sixth season playing football in a college program.