Sports can elicit many emotions, anger, elation, sadness and in some cases move you to tears. If you’re reading this, chances are you are a Miami Hurricanes fan like many of us are, and if you are old enough to have lived through the dynasty from 1983 through 2002, most of our emotions were centered around happiness and joy. ESPN decided to show The Robbery in the Desert last night, so that game brought on an entirely different set of emotions.
Miami has saved me from some rough patches in my life, so most games were from tears of joy. Call me what you like, but outside of my children, nothing has made me tear up more than Miami Hurricanes football.
SB Nation has asked “When Sports Made You Cry”, so here are my Top 5 Canes games that made me cry.
5. Miami/FSU 2017 - 7 years worth of emotions all came spilling out after Darrell Langham caught Malik Rosier’s last second pass and the Canes finally beat FSU 24-20. My best friend Carnell, and my wife Urania made a day trip down from Atlanta to attend the game, and we got everything we could have asked for. Back and forth scoring and a range of emotions. I’ll give her credit, she had a lot more faith than I did in the final drive, and kept saying “babe they’re gonna win”. When the replay official finally ruled that it was a TD, and the Canes were able to make the tackle on the ensuing kickoff, not going to lie, tears of joy were streaming down my face. She looked at both of us and said “are you really crying?” to which I tried to play it off as sweat, but no question my reaction wasn’t from the heat, but from tears of joy.
4. Miami/Notre Dame 1988 - Catholics vs Convicts! We all know the backstory to this game, the hype leading into this game, the buildup and ultimately the game itself. Miami was #1 in the country, and the defending National Champions, and Notre Dame was 4th. The bootleg T-Shirt of the month was crafted by some Notre Dame students and began selling like hot cakes on campus. By the time gameday got there, tensions were high every place you looked, and famously there was a fight in the tunnel before the game. We all know Cleveland Gary didn’t fumble and the Canes got screwed, but as a 13 year old, you couldn’t say much to me that day as I was completely inconsolable.
3. Miami/Penn St 1987 - The 1st time that Miami would lay an absolute egg in Tempe, Arizona, and to this day I still don’t understand how they lost to that Penn St team. I was 12, and spending the Christmas holidays with my family in Pittsburgh, PA, and obviously everyone up there was cheering for Penn St. Even as a 12 year old, my Canes swag and loud mouth were heard for 2 straight weeks of how Miami was going to kick the crap out of the Nittany Lions. When Pete Gift…..however you spell his last name sealed the deal with another Vinny Testaverde interception, I could not hold it in any longer. Outside of the highlights on The U 30 for 30, I’ve never rewatched a snap of this game.
2. Wide Right 1 - November 16th 1991, which happened to be 3 days after my 17th birthday, was the showdown of 1 vs 2. My mother decided, unbeknownst to me, to throw a surprise birthday party at our house. Fast forward to the 4th quarter and the Canes are fighting for another National Title game appearance as people start showing up to my house. I’m in no mood to party, until Gerry Thomas famously missed the kick Wide Right and the Canes would win 17-16. Now as a 17 year old the last thing I wanted friends to see was me shedding tears over a football game, so I booked it out of there for about an hour just to gather myself and listen to some of the radio post game show. I still get goose bumps to this day when rewatching those highlights.
1. Miami/Nebraska 1984 - “Deflected Away, Deflected Away”. Those words from the late great Sonny Hirsch replay in my head everytime I see Kenny Calhoun flick his wrist out just far enough to deflect Turner Gill’s 2 point conversion attempt. How can this not bring you to tears if you are a Miami fan? Miami(FLA) or Suntan U as they were known at the time had no business winning the game against those Nebraska Cornhuskers, but somehow Bernie Kosar, Howard Schnelleberger and a raucous Orange Bowl helped propel little old Miami to a National Title. I was allowed to watch the 1st quarter of the game and was told to go to bed, so I never saw the ending live, but best believe at 530am I was up looking at the news to see Miami had won the game. To this day I still have an old VHS tape with the original broadcast on it, and everytime I rewatch the ending of the game it’s all waterworks for me.
What games get you like this? Hopefully in the near future we get some more tear evoking memories. GO CANES