Thursday, August 18, 2011

Down Goes Miami: Sympathy For The Devil?

Oh why not go all "fire, ready, aim" and voice an opinion (albeit a limited one) about the Yahoo! Sports investigation of rouge booster Nevin Shapiro and the University of Miami.

No doubt, there is more to the story and some yet unrevealed facts are likely to make things worse not better, but...a few points to ponder.

Institutional control when it comes to boosters had always been tricky.  Shame on Miami if they maintained an “official” relationship with Shapiro once they knew that he was a) breaking NCAA rules and 2) a psycho.

That said, no matter how this plays out blood will be spilled and two guys who are certain to suffer for the sins of others are the two NEW head coaches of the Hurricanes’ major sports – Al Golden, football and Jim Larranaga, basketball.  Bot are new to Coral Gables for the 2010-11 seasons.

It’s not every day that we feel sorry for guys at or near the pinnacle of their careers making millions of dollars.  That said, it sucks to be Golden and Larranaga right now.

After 14 years at George Mason and a memorable run to the 2006 Final Four, Larranaga made the difficult decision to leave saying it had always been his dream to coach in the ACC.  

Now, it’s a nightmare.

GOLDEN (Joe Readle/Getty Images)
It would not seem to be hyperbole to describe new head football coach Al Golden as "rising star."

Over five seasons at Temple, Golden took the Owls to unprecedented heights. Before his arrival, TU had just two winning seasons since 1980 and had only won 22 percent of its games over the previous 30 years.

After taking over the Owls, who went 0-11 the season prior to his arrival, Golden led his team to a 17-5 record over the last 22 regular season games.

The 41-year-old Golden owns a 27-34 career record, which includes a 9-4 mark in 2009, and an 8-4 mark in 2010. He was able to lead the Owls to two winning seasons, which is exactly half of their total over the 26 years prior.

Now he has the Suits From Indianapolis (Formerly Kansas) camped out in his office and a whole different sort of hurricane with which to cope. 

Neither deserved the cards they have now been dealt.

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