IT’S MONDAY! Which means it’s time to stretch those hamstrings and BOING off the diving board and into the deep recesses of my Miami-Hurricanes-afflicted mind.
1) I should have known. Those four words are probably being said by a lot of Miami Hurricanes fans today. Or at least they’re the first words that come to my mind when I think about my beloved program. I bought in again. The Miami powers-that-be went all in this fall. They canned an underwhelming AD in Blake James and coach who, simply, was in over his head in Manny Diaz. They hired a new AD in Dan Radakovich from Clemson (which is a hire I still love, to be clear). They hired a head coach who’d had a relatively successful past, rather than a first-time head coach. But maybe more importantly, they hired a guy who’d won here. Who knew what success at this school requires.
And they didn’t stop there. They pulled in a who’s-who list of accomplished coordinators and positional coaches. Mario Cristobal talked about accountability. The spring game went well.
And man, I was sold. I believed that all it was going to take were said changes from the top down. That Miami just needed a guy like Cristobal to come in, give the problems with the program some elbow grease in the offseason, and all would be right again in Coral Gables.
The football was set up for me. The little girl in the blue dress asked me if I was ready. And I, in my yellow and black shirt, went running to the ball. Fully invested and believing this was it, I swung my leg and kicked.
Seconds later, I was on my back again, stars fluttering over my head and ball still in Lucy’s hands. Final score: MTSU 45, Miami 31.
2) Does this game really need to be delved into? Heck no. And you probably don’t want to relive it again anyways. Cam, Mike, Kappa Cane, and Justin have already hit the recaps well the last couple of days. If not for FIU, it would be the worst loss in program history. It’s easily a top 3-4 loss in school history. The offense is broken, and the defense couldn’t stop MTSU’s skill position players - who managed to score SEVEN POINTS IN A LOSS TO JAMES MADISON (!!!) - from running up and down the field in a 2020-UNC-esque manner. They all basically thought they’d toss their helmets on the field and win, and you could tell that.
3) No, what I care about is what this means going forward. It’s time to adjust expectations. This is not a 10-win team. Not even CLOSE. 7-5 might be a fair goal, and that’s just pathetic given how weak this schedule is. The Coastal is dreadfully bad this year, and I still don’t see Miami making the Sherman’s march to the sea through the division that they should here. The struggles are going to continue, unfortunately.
4) And why is that, you might ask? Why are you tossing in the towel on the season this quickly? Because something still stinks inside this program, and it’s rotten to its core. I’m not there, but I’m close enough to smell it, and I live two states away. This is going to take some serious soul searching and hard work from Mario Cristobal to get whatever rotten mentality, rotten-egg players, whatever is stinking up the core of this program out of there.
5) And I don’t envy Cristobal’s position of having to make a QB decision going forward. Malik Rosier was right today on Twitter when he said that there’s no going back to Tyler Van Dyke if Mario chooses Jake Garcia. But is Garcia the right choice for the offense that Josh Gattis wants to run...whatever that is supposed to look like? I don’t know. I’d defer to Cam and Justin more on that, as they understand schemes and systems better than me.
6) But I have two eyeballs, and Garcia has looked better to my layman’s eye than Van Dyke. And I say this also because of something I talked about on Twitter during the game: accountability. There has to be accountability for literally everyone on the team. From the coaches to the players, and even the star quarterback. When someone’s not pulling his weight, it’s time to do something to make sure the proper weight is being pulled at that position. If it takes Garcia in there to do that, then so be it. I don’t get paid to decide who best pulls that weight, but I know that had better be the reason that one or the other gets the nod in two weeks against UNC.
7) Thank God for the bye week. May Miami find some semblance of pride, a wide receiver who can get open and catch, and a defender who can stick to a would-be receiver like glue.
And may I find a chiropractor. Because I believed and ended up landing on my back yet again.