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Game day blog: Virginia 48, UM 0 (F)

They came to say good-bye to the Orange Bowl, but as it stands now, Hurricanes fans might as well say good-bye to the current season. UM has saved the worst for last.

Normally, I'd sit here and take in the final game ever at the Orange Bowl until the 7 minute mark -- when I head down to the field to grab quotes. But seeing how bad things are, I figured I'd let this become a forum for bigger issues you might want to tackle.

For starters, is this the most embarrasing moment for you as a Hurricanes fan?
Are we taking things for granted? I mean that in the sense that Randy Shannon is going to be able to turn this around. I know UM has some talented recruits waiting to come in, but can this program really climb back to the moutaintop? What makes you still have that faith today?

You digest that. I've got the dreadful play-by-play below.

By the way, I was on the field before the game, gathering thoughts from some of the greats -- Bennie Blades, Gino Torretta, Ottis Anderson and Darin Smith. I'll post the audio later tonight.

- Virginia wins the toss and defers to the second half. UM will receive.

UM 1st Drive (1st and 10 at UM 33, 14:53)
- Ryan Hill returns the opening kickoff out to the 33-yard line.
- After a 4-yard run by Javarris James and a 2-yard scramble by Kyle Wright, Darnell Jenkins comes through with the first big play for Miami, hauling a 5-yard catch for a first down to the UM 44.
- On the next set of downs, Wright goes to Lance Leggett on third and 6, but for only 3 yards. UM punts and Matt Bosher gets off a 45-yarder downed by Colin McCarthy at the Virginia 4.

VA 1st Drive (1st and 10 at the UVA 4, 11:33)
- After Kenny Phillips make a nice play in the backfield for a 1-yard loss, Virginia QB Jameel Sewell finds his tight end Tom Santi for a 25-yard gain upfield before he Santi steps out of bounds. On the next play, Virginia runs a screen play to running back Mikell Simpson, who picks up 11 yards and another first down to the UM 38.
- On the next play, Simpson sweeps wide and rumbles all the way down to the UM 34, picking up 38 yards on the play after getting away twice from Tavares Gooden.
- On the very next play, UM has a chance to sack Sewell back for a big loss, but he escapes the grasp of Darryl Sharpton and Vegas Franklin and scrambles forward for a 5-yard gain.
- With 8:35 left Virginia faces 3rd and 5 at the UM 29 and picks up a first down when Sewell moves left and finds receiver Maurice Covington wide open in the middle of the field. And he waltzes past Willie Cooper for a with 8:26 left. Drive: 7 plays, 96 yards, 3:07. UVA 7, UM 0.
- And the Orange Bowl is stunned.

UM 2nd Drive (1st and 10 at UM 25, 8:18)
- On the ensuing kickoff, Shawnbrey McNeal goes down awkwardly after fielding the kick and limps off the field.
- On first down, Darnell Jenkins lines up at quarterback and takes a direct snap forward for short yardage. UM gets flagged for holding. Kyle Wright returns to the game.
- On first and 20, Dajleon Farr gets open over the middle for an 11-yard gain. On second and 9, fullback Jerrell Mabry picks up 3 yards, bringing up a 3rd and 6. On the next play, Virginia brings the safety blitz and Wright's pass to Jerrell Mabry bounces off his hands and into the hands of Virginia cornerback Vic Hall who intercepts the ball at the UM 36.

UV 2nd Drive (1st and 10 at UM 36)
- On the first play, Sewell tries to go deep down the center of the field and is intercepted by Randy Phillips, who returns the ball to the UM 27. The Canes catch a break.

UM 3rd Drive (1st and 10 at UM 27)
- After a 1-yard run by Graig Cooper and incomplete pass by Kyle Wright, he gets picked off again -- this time by linebacker Jon Copper who sits back in zone coverage and catches the ball at the UM 36.

UV 3rd Drive (1st and 10 at UM 36, 5:13 left)
- On first down, after a short run, UM defensive tackle Antonio Dixon limps off the field. Not good news. On third and 11 at the UM 37, UM brings the blitz and sacks Sewell, forcing a fumble that Colin McCarthy scoops up and returns for a touchdown. But the play is called back because Vegas Franklin jumped offsides.
- On the next play, Franklin makes up for his goof -- somewhat -- by sacking Sewell at the UM 35.
- Virginia punter Chris Gould tries to pooch the ball, but it bounces into the end zone.

UM 4th Drive (1st and 10 at UM 20, 2:51 left)
- Despite all the troubles early on, the Canes should feel lucky to only be down 7-0. If I'm Randy Shannon, I'm letting Cooper and James run the football.
- UM goes three and out after Darnell Jenkins and Jarell Mabry drop what would have been first down catches.
- Things get worse when Matt Bosher's punt gets blocked by Josh Zidenberg and it rolls out of bounds at the UM 5.

UV 4th Drive (1st and 10 at UM 4)
- Two plays later, tailback Keith Payne follows his blockers into the end zone to make it 14-0 with 1:08 to play. Drive: 2 plays, 4 yards, :44. UVA 14, UM 0.

UM 5th Drive (1st and 10 at UM 22)
- With all the big-time recruits on the sidelines, you'd think Randy Shannon would get some of them to put on uniforms at halftime.
- Javarris James picks up UM's 2nd first down afer back-to-back runs net 11 yards... END OF THE FIRST QUARTER.

UM 5th Drive (1st and 10 at UM 22)
- UM picks up action here in the second quarter with a 1st and 10 at the UM 33. On first down, Wright fakes a handoff and has Darnell Jenkins open despit double-coverage and the pass falls incomplete.
- UM's drive goes south two plays later when Lance Leggett finds himself open in the middle of the field, falls to the ground and Kyl Wright's pass bounces off his chest and hands and up into the hands off a Virginia safety who returns it to the UM 21.

UV 5th Drive (1st and 10 at UM 21)
- UM's defense is getting pressure on Sewell, but that offsides penalty right now on Vegas Franklin looms large.
- Virginia ends up scoring on a 33-yard field goal by Gould with 13:29 left.

UM 6th Drive (1st and 10 at UM 3)
- The comedy of erros continues. Ryan Hill fields a bouncing ball that would have gone out of bounds. Instead, he steps out of bounds at the 3 yardline giving UM horrible field position. Miami ends up punting.

UV 6th Drive (1st and 10 at UM 38)
- Sewell caps a quick drive with a one-yard plunge into the end zone, making the score 23-0 with 10:02 to play. Do the fans start hitting the exits now? UVA 24, UM 0.

UM 7th Drive (1st and 10 at UM 28)
- On first down, Nate Collins sacks Kyle Wright at the UM 23. On second and 15, Shannon calls time out. On the next play, Graig Cooper explodes for a 25-yard gain upfield to the UM 48.
- UM punts four plays later.

UV 7th Drive (1st and 10 at UV 28, 7:35)
- I'm just going to stop doing play by play. This is amazing. Virginia is just killing UM. Virginia scores again. 31-0.


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Bottom line is both Dee and Coker should have been fired after the Peach Bowl. Assuming mostly freshman and sophomores play next year, this team is 3 years away. This season was a lost season because there were no options at quarterback and Shannon try to salvage the careers of many seniors. In reality, the only seniors to step up this year are Jenkins, Morse, McCray and Gooden, which speaks volumes about Coker's recruiting classes. However, the Canes shouldn't have been blown out they way they were tonight.

The Canes are sucking me off right now - they are my biatches!!

Russell, miami has Marve in the roster plus they have the potential to sign three QBs this coming year. I wasn't counting Kirby cause I don't think he will be playing QB.

Hello, did any of you notice the team has gotten progressively worse. You can blame players for the next 3 years but its the coaching.

This team doesn't have a pulse. Shannon has to clean house after this year. At least the team played hard and gave a full effort during the probation years. This team hasn't consistently played hard since 2003.

I can hear the Canes singing this song right now.... (my name)

If they closed the OB and the Canes didn't show up would any one care!?!

Ouch - Shannon just bit my balls!


Coker pushed his former coaches (Kehoe, Solindger, etc..) under the bus after the Peach Bowl game. I could have coached the team Coker inherited and won a national title.

I think we have had some bad luck along the way also. Kyle and Lance Legget were suppose to be Blue Chip/cant miss prospects. Needless to say, they're a bust! Plus, all these 1st rounders leaving as juniors doesn't help the program. But, you cant blame them for grabbing the big paycheck.

I think the UM players didn't get the memo that they were supposed to play tonight. Wasn't Miami supposed to do this to the Cavs?

Its official... just call this city downright cursed with its sports teams.

So much for that bogus excuse of playing poorly at noon start time games. This team proved it can play poorly in night games as well! I am in shock at the score and the performance! I think FAU would have beat UM if they played tonight!

Sad, pathetic game, why did the U show up for this one? Were they deliberately trying to embarass themselves? If that was their intent, then they were completely successful. It was too bad that this game was even on TV. Even the commentators were laughing at the U, with all that talent, this was the best they could muster. You can't blame the coaches, when the players decide not to show up. It's just a sad way to send the OB out to the wrecking ball. To the players, I say, congradulations, you've finally sunk to a new low. Even the teams from the 70s' were better teams than this. They wern't better talented, just better teams.


serious question (not just rhetorical bitching):

how can miami be this bad? if you really unpack the problems ... how in the world is miami this bad?

Two fumbles on one PLAY! I hate to say it, but this was the worst performance of the YEAR! At least we were in the OU game until late 3rd quarter.

48-0. This game is on Shannon and his sorry assistants. Nix is clueless. Nix makes Werner and Olson look like Mike Martz! This team was totally unprepared and totally embarrassed. This team has regressed this season and I am not sure Shannon can turn it around. Virginia try to run the clock out during the fourth quarter and this team is so incompetent that it still gave away points.

This is the downfall for all Miami teams.

You blame the coaches when players don't show up that's their job get the team to show up and play hard.
I'm not blaming a team that has gotten worse as the season has went along. The team plays slow, timid, and scared of getting benched, not to mention who knows why certain guys play.
Some of ya'll are waiting for recruits but they can't solve poor coaching and it may not be in their best interest to play for a pathetic coach.
I wonder who Randy is going to blame for this game because from the kickoff they looked pathetic and that's coaching. Execution... hint hint coaching.

The worse loss ever by the U in the Orange Bowl. Shannon better get it turned around quickly because there is no excuse for this type of embarassment.

Its over 48-0. Wow, a total, pathetic effort! So much for the "U" mystique tonight. Way to go out with a Bang!

not with a bang but a whimper

Blame Wayne and Cam they cursed this city in that trade. Now Miami will never again see another title in any sports team.

UM owes me $44

Ever since Shalala came to UM it has been cursed! They need to get rid of her and Dee! She's a bad, luck troll!

Its nice to bench guys to instill fear, but at some point players begin to play timid. If Shannon is that upset with how some of the upper classmen practice and play, then he should have just played his recruits. Bottom line, Shannon and his staff need to do some soul searching. The only team Virginia blew out this year is Pitt and we all know that Wannstedt is on his way out. The coaching staff is beginning to appear incompetent. This is a team with 17 seniors and a lot of experience. They shouldn't play this poorly.

Blown out of the OB. WOW!! Now you scUMheads can join the cursed Dolphins at Joe Robbie. Neither team will ever sniff another championship. The OB CURSE grows stronger!!!

48-0. What an embarrassment!! Its almost as bad as the fins!!!

Its nice to bench guys to instill fear, but at some point players begin to play timid. If Shannon is that upset with how some of the upper classmen practice and play, then he should have just played his recruits. Bottom line, Shannon and his staff need to do some soul searching. The only team Virginia blew out this year is Pitt and we all know that Wannstedt is on his way out. The coaching staff is beginning to appear incompetent. This is a team with 17 seniors and a lot of experience. They shouldn't play this poorly.


UM SUX, I think this is the downfall for all Miami sports.


Wow... once the Canes go to Joe Robbie stadium (the curse of Miami sports teams) they'll never win another game again.

I'm sorry to say this and I have been a support of Randy Shannon but this humiliation is unacceptable. How can Coker and Shannon get paid millions and continue to perform so poorly. It’s going to take a miracle to keep this recruiting class in tact and another one for this program to turn around. What I saw from the hurricanes today is pitiful execution; Randy and Nix are in way over their heads and needs to do the right thing. Step down!!!!. Coaching is about more then just setting some rules and discipline. Canes game plan sucks, play calling suck, execution sucks, coaching sucks.

i think we need to give randy a break... coker has blown this program. i dont think any coach could have gotten this team to perform. mentally these guys are soft. coaches have been trying to toughen them up by instilling competition back in the program but guess what, about a handfull of players could handle it. the competition factor is built to weed out the weak and exploit the strong.. it cant get much worse then tonight, so there will be better days next year and so on and so forth... be patient cuz the kids waiting to join the U are special!! like damien lewis, reggie wayne, dan morgan special.. these guys believe and thats what the U needs!!

FIUmom, I woudlnt be laughing so hard either the golden panthers have yet to find anything close to a win this year you mise will go join the dolphins.. just another loser Miami team.

What a way to close out the Orange Bowl. I am so sad. But not for these so called "Hurricanes." I feel sorry for the alumni, for the fans, for the program, and for the O.B. I can accept a loss. I can even accept a lopsided loss agaisnt a vastly superior opponent. What I can't accept is players who don't care, who play with no heart, and who are not courageous enough to leave it all on the field.

I remember that following any loss, my football coach would tell guys on my team who would yell, cuss, and slam things against the locker that if they would have left it all on the field, they shouldn't have the energy to yell, cuss, or slam things. In other words, they should have left it all on the field.

The point is that none of these players should have anything to say about this game other than to acknowledge that they have no heart and no honor and as a result they got their asses handed to by a team that was not vastly superior to them in talent.

manbearpig, its true Joe Robbie stadium is cursed by those dolphins and marlins. Sorry Canes you will never win another game in that loser stadium.

The coaching staff is pathetic. I know we lack the talent of days gone by, but to play with a lack of urgency goes back to coaching. This team played just like the fate of the "OB"--Finished! Go Canes!

i'm a hurricane through and through but that was just embarassing

3-step process to help everyone write comments on this blog:

1) Point fingers
2) Whine a lot
3) Talk about why you're a "true Canes fan" (whatever the hell that means) and why other people aren't.

On another pathetic note: I can't believe that the team didn't try to score on that last drive. I know that for 99% of the world and 100% of the team, that last drive was meaningless, but to lay a goose egg in the last game the the Hurricane football program will ever play in the O.B. is unacceptable. They were approximately at the 50 yardline with about 30 seconds left to play. I know that Kyle sucks, but damn throw a fu#king hail mary down the field and try not to be shut out!

I can't believe it.

I hope so, Tdiddy9212. I want to believe what you say. I’m just so damn angry. I feel like the program is in free fall. How could this happen. How in the world could someone(Coker) getting paid 3 million a year destroy a program so fast? Why didn’t that fat piece of excrement Paul Dee catch this problem sooner? That jabba the hut looking motherf@#$... I just pray this recruiting class hangs tough, we need winners.

When was the last time Miami developed a qb? I could make the argument that Ken Dorsey was a more accurate passer in his sophomore year than in his senior year. All of the qb's since then have under-achieved. When do we start questtioning coaching? Do we have a qb coach?

Coach Shannon is playing with Coach Coker's players. So I want to give him at least 3 years.

This was the most disgracefull loss in Miami history.

As bad as the score was, we are really still just a few positions shy of being on the verge of greatness. Unfortunately one of those positions is QB, and that's enough to turn a good team bad. We have no playmakers at WR, which is why we're left throwing to Jarrell Mabry on crucial 3rd downs. And to Lance Leggett who has never consistently caught the ball. 2 of the 3 picks in the first half were tipped balls, but if we had a playmaker at WR, those balls would have been caught. But those mistakes multiplied on the scoreboard. None of us believes that UVA is better than us by that big of a margin. But it seems like week after week, somebody has the game of their lifetime against us.
I'm not one of those who cry for a coaching change everytime we lose, but I did want to call a timeout and run down on the field to tell Rochford that all of his shotgun snaps were hitting Kyle in the ankles. Do you think somebody would have had the forethought to tell him that before if resulted in a fumble? Nope.

Seriously y'all, this is embarassing, but it's not as difficult a loss to swollow as the Fiesta Bowl against Ohio St. At least they had somthing to actually play for back then. We all know that this team dosen't deserve to be in a bowl game by now. We all wanted the Canes to win tonight including the CANES, but it didn't happen. We have won 5 of the last 25 National Champs. That's pretty damn good for any storied college football team if you ask me. I think that we all ask way too damn much out of this school way too often. Afterall, when it comes down to it these are just kids with an incredible opportunity in front of them. If they can't get out of their own way to realize that they don't deserve success. I love the Canes. Always have and always will. Even when they become a BCS Sub Div. team. Ha...

Go Canes!

Kiss my brown, puckered rosebud...

Maybe now Shannon will clear the bench and let the younger guys play, cause like i've been saying all season they can't suck no worse than the starters. I support Shannon 100 percent but his pride is gonna end his career before it gets started. These guys don't give it their all (especially Kirby and Kyle) cause they don't have to worry about being replaced. It seems that the only player on this team that has to fight for his job every week is Sam Sheilds! Kyle, Kirby, and the entire defense has'nt done anything all season but you only want to bench Sheilds cause he did'nt practice as well as you wanted him to. Like i said before, you can't always judge someone's heart by how they practice. You may have guys that wreak absolute havoc on the practice field only to bitch up on the playing field. These guys are called week-day warriors...guys that try to fight and kill their teammates but are afraid to touch the opposistion on game day. That's the problem with this team, to many week-day warriors and not enough weekend warriors!

Hey Manny,
You want to know what a real Cane is? It isn't what you saw on the field tonight. These players should have the U stripped from their helmets. To suffer the worst home shutout loss in the history of the OB in the last game at the stadium is insane. I know you love the Cane Manny and you'll have 25 excuses for what happened, but please, this team is no better than a fourth place Ivy League team. I keep wondering when the bottom will come, Oklahoma, N.C. State and now and now I believe we have just hit the bottom of the barrell. This team has no pride, no emotion, no will to get better. I've got a feeling we may not see the worst until next year or later. This is embarassing and a disgrace to the Cane Nation everywhere. Please stop trying to defend these players. They just suck. They have no pride. They have no will to win. They don't care. It's a free ride whether they win 12 games or none. Wake up and smell the coffee Manny.

I agree with Canester and Kyle Wright Sucks. Hey, here's a question: in the long run, who is worse off: U.M. or Notre Dame?

No. I don't think this team will ever be any good anymore. The program should be shuttered along with the Orange Bowl. The university administration just will NOT do anything for this program. It has made a fortune for the school and has received NOTHING in return. No decent facilities, no home field, and no top-notch coaches. Everything has been done on the CHEAP and it has finally caught up with this program and this university.

I don't care to watch us get waxed by the likes of the Dukes and Temples of this world, which is what is going to be happening pretty soon. Let it go. It was a great twenty years, but it's over.

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