Last night, the guys of State of the U and I were talking about our favorite FSU-Miami moments from the past for our roundtable (which you should be on the lookout for) and after reading some of the other guys' stories, who are all older than I am, I realized that I really don't have that great of memories from this rivalry.
I'm 20 years old and if I told you that I remembered the glory days of Hurricanes football, I would be a lying to you. I do, however, remember some good things but most of my memories aren't very good. In hindsight, the last great Miami team was in 2004 and I was just turning 11 years old. I remember watching Canes games, but I wasn't old enough or fan enough to know what every game meant or what this rivalry meant to people around it. Now I do.
Florida State against Miami is the real deal. Throughout the year I've made a lot of friends that ended up going to Florida State and rep the garnet and gold proudly and their hatred towards Miami is not a joke. But arguments with them can get dicey and they always pull out the last couple of meetings between the two to try and shut me up. And honestly, it works.
Them being 'Noles fans I definitely hit them back with the "Wide left. Wide right" joke, but truth is I only witnessed one of those kicks and I was still really young to know what those words meant. I also use the "Five national championships" argument, but I was 8 in 2001 which was the last time the Canes held up the crystal ball. The truth is that I still hold on to past results and past jokes that the older fans were a part of, but people my age, were not. Yeah they happened and are great memories for the program, but they really didn't mean as much as they would right now and anybody that says otherwise is probably just trying to relive memories the never even lived.
Those same Seminoles fans that happen to be my friends constantly harp about the last few meetings between the two schools, their better recruiting classes and their postseason achievements and until a couple weeks ago, they would also hit us with the NCAA investigation (by the way, thank god that's over.) And again, I would just go back to events that I've read about or just seen it on YouTube.
Since I'm being completely honest, I didn't realize the meaning of "the speech" in 2001 since I was about to head to high school and it still didn't mean as much to me as it would a person that was 20 at that time, because that was their moment or maybe their introduction to the rivalry. I personally don't have that yet and I'm sure a lot of Canes fans my age can back me up on this even if they don't want to admit it and be looked down upon older fans.
It's now 2013 and I'm fully aware of what's happening and what this rivalry means to people and the Canes have a great shot of doing something special on Saturday.
To put things in perspective, I was talking to my fellow SOTU colleague Larry "The Amigo" Millian during the Florida game and he told me that his son's highlight as a Canes fan was the NC State game last season where Stephen Morris connected with Phillip Dorsett. Obviously his son is a lot younger than I am, but that's honestly one of the better games a young kid that's learning how to be a Cane has seen, and I'm sure you will all agree, that's just not okay for a Hurricanes program.
If the Canes can win on Saturday, it would bolster their chance at being in the national tittle conversation and that alone is HUGE. But what this team or its fans may not realize is that it might give some sort of introduction to some of the people my age to the winning tradition of the Miami Hurricanes.
No I wasn't a part of the botched kicks and I was just too young to remember Ed Reed roaming the secondary for Miami and giving his famous speech, but a win Saturday against a strong Seminoles team could give me the same feeling that you all had during those successful years.