Former Dallas Cowboy Dandy Don Meredith used to say at the end of Monday Night Football games that it was time to turn out the lights as the party is over.
If he were still alive and at Sun Life Stadium on Saturday, he would been warming up to sing that mantra in the middle of the first quarter.
What Al Golden and Blake James have done, aside from losing games and the fan base, is they made Saturday's non-Holy. There used to be a buzz come Saturday and no matter what happened at work, no matter how much the spouse nagged you all week, you had Saturdays to look forward to and you looked forward to a Hurricanes game and victory.
Now, I find it more grueling to watch the Canes than I do in finding it to work all week. Watching today's game was a chore. The game was not fun to watch and this team has not been fun to watch at all this season. We are almost better off not being on television. The pain would subside and the rest of the country would not see how awful our program really is.
I do not enjoy the trek to the stadium when we play a top team because I am already certain that we are not going to win. I did not anticipate losing by 58 points today, but I did not expect to win. Al Golden is not capable of beating a winning team and he has proven that over the last five seasons.
"We got beat from top to bottom. They outplayed us, they outcoached us," Golden said after the game. "I just told the team, that’s completely my responsibility for not getting them ready to play. They just beat us soundly, in every facet of the game, period."
How many more times are we going to hear this? It is the same presser after every game and he says the same things. If the buck stops with him, it is time to get him going and put his foot out the door. Golden has one foot out the door and one foot on a banana peel. Can we get someone to help him clean out his office?
My first season following UM football was 1979 and we had a quarterback from Pennsylvania named Jim Kelly and a coach that smoked a pipe that hand some modicum of success in the NFL by the name of Howard Schnellenberger. I was in high school then. I went to college at UM during the Jimmy Johnson Era and I am not used to losing. We never lost at home while I went to school and we certainly never lost to teams like Cincinnati or got thumped like we did today. We did that to other teams. I remember Gerry Faust and Notre Dame losing 58-0 to us at the Orange Bowl and then he got canned.
Johnson took it in stride when we were accused of running up the score on America's team. No one cared, we had swagger, we were the Hurricanes.
Now, we are the ones that are getting the score ran up on and we are the butt of jokes around the country. That causes a program to lose fans and lose recruits. We cannot afford that any longer.
Blake James, I know that you are a bright man. Please make the pain go away. Make Golden and his cast go away. We have the money to hire a big name coach, like Florida, like Ohio State and like every other school that replaced their castoffs with big names and are now winning. If you refuse to do this, then I call for your job termination as well. Were you told to win or were you told to accept losing and just worry about the bottom line? Show some guts, show some intestinal fortitude and do what is right. If we were talking I would use colorful language that my editors would not appreciate.
You want more Goldenspeak? Here is some more. He was asked post game if he thought that the team was ill-prepared coming into this game.
"No. Absolutely not. I thought they really invested, I thought they had a great week. They practiced really well. We got beat from the start by a really good football team and we didn’t answer. There was nothing in the week... I check with the staff every day, I check with the leadership," Golden said. "There was none of that. We’re not that kind of team, where we cannot be on edge, and compete, and be focused and be ready to go. I thought we had a really good week. We just got beat soundly by this team."
So, Big Al checks with his cast of coaches and tries to get a pulse on the team. If you fired this staff now, they would be hard pressed to find new jobs next season. They are tainted. It's time to move on.
Here is more Goldenisms regarding the stupid penalties that Miami incurs.
"It’s my responsibility. We’re still getting the 15-yard variety. Just inexcusable. Intolerable. Most of them are selfish in nature. We helped them. We helped a really good football team today."
If all of this is Golden's responsibility and it is up to him to fix, and those problems are not getting fixed, then why is he still here? Why is it not someone else's responsibility to fix them?
I, for one, am done. I will write my Letter to Al this week, as I always do, and I will start putting together a list of his possible successors. It is time to assume that Al is Dead Man Walking and that he is on borrowed time. It might not happen this week, because James and the Board do not have the guts to pull the trigger ala Pat Haden and Lane Kiffin, but it will happen.
Maybe when that happens we can enjoy football again and look forward to game day and have some hope that another banner will be hoisted in Sun Life Stadium.