"Ask any racer. Any real racer. It don't matter if you win by an inch or a mile. Winning's winning." - Dominic Toretto - The Fast and The Furious
In the aftermath of Miami's 58-0 loss to Clemson, I was asked the same question over and over again by friends. "How long did you stay at the game?" I responded: "I never leave a game early. Enduring difficult losses and disappointments make the wins and triumphs feel that much better." I certainly didn't expect to be rewarded this soon, but the Hurricanes won an incredible game last night against Duke.
"The Return" was a play no Miami fan will ever forget. Twenty years from now, you will remember where you were when you saw it. You will remember who you were with. The emotional rollercoaster of Saturday's game is why so many of us love college football. There is always a chance you'll see something special, something you've never seen before. It's why we watch. Miami desperately needed something to celebrate this season. One play, eight laterals, and a controversial win successfully unified the Canes fan base. I don't know if this is the start of better things to come, but it doesn't matter right now. Live in the moment and savor the improbable win.
Things I Don't Know
Why ESPNU doesn't have a camera angle to review Thomas Sirk getting stuffed at the goal line with 6 seconds left.
Why Miami was called for pass interference over and over again on Duke's last drive.
Why the ACC decided to solely comment on the final play of a game that featured an 18 penalty disparity between the two teams.
Why people continue to say Miami is irrelevant while at the same time campaigning for the result of a football game to be changed THE DAY AFTER it ended.
Things I Do Know
Malik Rosier stepped up and played far better than expected. He is 1-0 as a starter.
Larry Scott took over at an emotional time and his team rallied together to earn a huge road victory. He is 1-0 as Miami's Head Coach.
Miami is very much alive in the ACC Coastal. The controversy around the win will help breed an "Us against the world" mentality that helped this program thrive in the glory days.
Corn Elder is a touchdown scoring playmaking machine.
Miami's players and staff deserved this win. After the firing of Al Golden and the tragedy Artie Burns has been dealing with, I couldn't be happier for a group of guys. The celebration after the win was truly special. I was emotional and I'm sure you were too. What a feeling.
The dramatic final play has been seen by every football fan in America. Love Miami or Hate Miami, the Hurricanes still matter. "The Return" and the reaction that has followed shows the brand reach Miami still has, despite years of mediocre results. Whoever takes over as Head Coach will be lucky to be here.
Go Canes. Beat Virginia.