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Shannon "misspoke"

On Monday, Susan Miller Degnan and I had an exclusive interview with coach Randy Shannon, as he's made his way through different interviews with reporters this week.

Shannon talked about a lot of things, including the image of the University of Miami in the wake of Sean Taylor's shooting death earlier this week. Earlier today, my editors deleted a portion of that interview because it was false. The following is the direct Q&A -- word for word.

Q: I think its all because of the history…
A: But what history? My best friend Walter Odom got killed at the University of Florida, shot, when I was at school at the University of Miami.

According to Miami Herald archives, Odom was never shot or killed at the University of Florida. He was, however, stabbed at a party in Gainesville in 1989. It was two years after he was done playing as a Gator. Odom, a standout at American High who befriended Shannon in Northwest Miami, later died in 2002 from a long illness at age 36.

Just an hour ago, I asked UM Sports Information director Mark Pray if I could speak with Shannon. He said "Coach Shannon realizes he misspoke," and declined an interview request.

Shannon proceeded to make one further comment that The Miami Herald could not substantiate and felt was necessary to delete from the website regarding guns and the University of Florida. Here is the rest of that quote that had been previously deleted.

Q: But obviously though there’s kids that live off campus. But what do you tell parents about that?
A: We show them the neighborhoods. Everybody else in the country lives off campus and they still have the same problems. But their newspaper don’t beat them up about it. Like our newspaper beats us up about it. I know you guys are doing your job, you got to beat us up about it. But then understand we just want a fair shot. At Ohio State, do you realize you had more things happen at Ohio State more than anything. You think we’ve been bad? Go check out Ohio State, guys who have been arrested, bar fights. Everything at Ohio State and you’d think University of Miami was angels. Florida the same...


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"In fact, the 14 arrests of Ohio State football players during this time barely exceed the number of arrests of just one of Mr. Shannon’s famous recruits."

Which player would that be? Willie Williams? If so, his issues all occured prior to him arriving at Miami, and he never got into any trouble while at Miami. Unfortunately for him, once he got to Louisville, his problems started all over again and the last I heard he was off the team. One could surmise from those facts that Miami and Shannon were in fact a postive influence on him. In any event, Miami was not the only school that recruited WW, and as the #1 LB recruit in the country at the time, I'm sure any school would have loved to have him amongst their recruiting class, including OSU. I always find it funny how the media and other fans portray Miami's players and recruits in a negative light, yet they are donw here every year recruiting the exact same kids.

So OSU has had 200% more players arrested than Miami within the same time period. Miami's only arrest was Marve, for breaking a car mirror - also a misdomeanor.

Can anyone refresh my memory...when was the last time a Miami player was arreasted for a violent crime or a felony? Facts please.


What are you talking about?

Shannon said his "best friend" was shot and killed while attending UF. Either Odom was not remotely close to being Shannon's "best friend", or he absolutely knew his statements were flat out false. Either way he is a liar.

I understand your concern for fair and balanced media coverage and Shannon may very well have had points that needed to be made. That is not what everyone (other than UM homers) are upset about.

We are outraged that someone (Shannon) who is supposedly a positive role model for our youth, would knowingly making false statements in an attempt to make a point.

I am shocked that the majority of UM fans posting here condone lying. I do believe, however, that the majority of UM fans have integrity, are concerned about this situation, but are not ones to post here(on a blog) because they do truly love UM and don't want to do any further harm to the program.

Dan R, If a politician from a party that you are not in favor of told a blatant lie because the party that you like had been critical of his--Even Unjustifiably--would you defend his or her actions by saying "That's okay we said something not nice about his party"----Would you really do that?? I realize that as a FANatical follower of a college football team--even one that I would bet there is a 99% chance you didn't attend--that logic must be checked at the door, but doesn't there come a time that even a FANatic can step back and say "That's messed up"????????

Andrea, oh now we're talking about Role Models are we? Shannon is a great role model and no one else will even come close.

Shannon's main point was correct. Miami is being unfairly treated which is true. If there is something wrong with the supporting facts, they are not that important, IMO. You know its commonly known that Meyer lies through his teeth to his recruits. He apparently told one recruit that he recruited Tim Tebow as a LB. LOL. That was before they started playing of course. Good Role Model, isn't it? Lie to get what you want.

Shannon says he will never take away people's scholarships even if they don't contribute to football, unlike Meyer or the good old Saban. I would rather have my kid play for some one like Shannon rather than snakes like Meyer or Saban may be even the sweater vest to some extent.

UF has many more players in trouble and so does Ohio State compared to U of M. As I said earlier, Gainesville = UF and UF = Gainesville. Miami != U of Miami. Some of these ignorant fools who have never set foot in Miami blame everything on the U.

Oh Lou, don't make assumptions about me. I got advanced degrees from the U of Miami. Although I am out of state now, my car proudly wears my official "U" tag. Why should UF folks always make assumptions about others which are false?

Are you all afraid of U of Miami? Why is that? Tell the truth you people. Don't accuse the U unfairly.


My opinion about this whole thing is that Shannon did infact mispeak, he made an error, but I don't think he intentionally lied. Shannon does nolt have a history of being a liar, and why would he lie about this. In the age of the internet, overzealous reporting, and fantical fans, any error in fact will be discovered in a very short period of time.

I understand your point about mixing up the facts about a friends murder, but I think the context of the conversation has to be considered. Also keep in mid that Manny's blog report was a transcript of a casual conversation with Shannon held at a busy and noisy restaurant. The actual audio of the conversation is available on this site. The Q&A session was open, there was no pre-agreed upon questions, it was Manny asking Shannon anything he wanted, and in between bites of food, Shannon was responding off of the top of his mind. While the facts of his response weren't entirely accurate, his point was.

I hope Shannon will issue an apology and a clarification/explanation, but in all honesty I still feel this is being blown way out of proportion. Shannon has nothing to gain from lying about this and this whole incident is a prime example of how the media and fans of other teams like to blow every negative regarding UM out proportion and use it as a justification for furthering their bias against Miami.

Now that's funny, a coach seriously thinking the Buckeyes aren't under just as big a microscope from the press as Miami. Sounded like a feeble attempt to slow the growing exodus of southern Florida's top recruits who are leaving to play for tOSU.



Just a thought... concerning Randy and his need for people like us to stand behind him and watch his back.

IMO...We just came from one of the worst dark eras in Miami football history, in 2007.. The 7 losses of a 5/7 record. The failure of a team as a whole, although most of the losses were from the underachieving players. The embarrassing Orange bowl loss that we can never take back and so on...

We can't erase the past, It's been written and it's there forever.... The past is the past and now we must look at the future...

Randy has been faced with tough decisions about our future and he is making those decisions right now, right in front of our eyes... He's at the helm and he's making history in his own way.

I can't think of any other Major College, who has ever taken this route to turn a failed football program around.

Basically cleaning house in his own way... Telling the up coming seniors and juniors the truth of their future to play football at the U, all while being respectful and letting them make their own decision to leave or stay.

With the newly opened slots he is trying to bring on one of the largest and best, if not the best, recruiting classes ever!!!

In conclusion...To all Canes fans and media,… Randy is part of the U and the U needs your support not your negative criticisms.

Go Canes




I just can't argue with you. Your comments are silly, immature, and unsubstantiated.

In that vein, I can understand why you condone Shannon lying (not "mispeaking"). According to you, there is no need to get your facts straight, as long as they serve your purpose.


You should check your facts. A significant number of recruits from the Miami area, including over half a dozen of the top players from the #1 HS team in the U.S., Miami Northwestern, are committed to UM. While neither of us knows what any of these young men will actually do on NLOI day, claiming that there is an "exodus of Southern Florida's top recruits" is laughable.

hey andrea, ESPn lets you read Coach Shannon's mind? prove intent, bitch ... GOOD LUCK

What purpose does Shannon have by lying? What does he gain from it?

a lot of our verbals are going to UF

Posted by: NYCCane | November 29, 2007 at 11:39 PM who? name 'em

"Miami Art Museum to Unveil Design for New Building (Overlooking Biscayne Bay)"

Miami Institute for Human Genomics


espN? Reading minds? I don't really know what point you are making here but...

Would you know how and when your "best friend" died? Especially if it was something as horrendous as being shot?

I would.


What purpose would he have in lying?

To protect recruiting.

I know you both are intellingent enough to figure this out by yourselves.

hey andrea, ever misspeak?

lie = intent to deceive ... prove intent


Do you seriously want me to believe that Shannon intended to say, "My best friend, Odom, was stabbed in Gainesville a few years after he graduated. He recovered, though. He didn't die till many years later...here in Miami...from natural causes," but he misspoke and it came out, "My best friend Odom was shot and killed while he attended UF"?

If that is what you define as "misspeak"...then no, never in my life have I misspoke.


What benefit to recruiting does Shannon have in lying about this? He made an error in his facts, that is true. But listen to the actual audio of the conversation between Shannon, Manny, and Susan. The topic wasn't about recruiting, the topic was about the media's blatent bias against Miami.

Anyway, what is your motivation and purpose for being on this blog? It's obvious that you are not a Miami fan and have a bias against UM.

You sure are adament I'll give you that. If Miami fans got into such an uproar about ever negative or mistruth that was said about UM, they'd spend their entire lives on these blogs.

was walter odom victimized in gainesville?


Once again....I am in disbelief by your and Green's points. If you truly graduated from UM, you certainly must be intelligent enough to figure this out by yourself.

You yourselves are upset at the media because you feel they portray UM in an unfairly negative light. On this point you may very well have a justifiable complaint.

Shannon now turns the table and attempts to shine a negative light on UF, OSU, FSU and others AND uses deliberate untruths to do so. You really can't figure out why we are upset?

If you are upset that unfair negative publicity could possibly hurt your recruiting, why should we stand by and listen to Shannon spew lies that can hurt our image and recruiting?

And please don't tell me again that I can't prove intent. What if he said "My wife is from Mars". I guess I can't prove intent to state false facts in that situation either.


I am immature? LOL. You were cornered and Mr. Meyer is a big liar who has a habit of lying to recruits and it has been documented enough. If he is your role model, may G-d help you!

Green, Yes, Mr. Odom was stabbed in Gainesville and perhaps his illness he died from had something to do with that. Clearly, UF players for some reason turn in to thugs when they get to Gainesville.

All I am saying is, don't blame U of Miami. UF/ Ohio State are all much worse than us. We are angelic compared to many of your programs. Shannon has been through a lot and he knows a lot more on relating to many players than Meyer/ Tressel ever will.


Laughable....truly laughable. I can't argue with you guys anymore. You truly believe your own statements. My mom always reminded me, "Don't throw pearls to swine".

Same here Andrea. UF are the swine, "The U" are the Pearls. Meyer's deals have been documented by ESPN.

Hurts, doesn't it, particularly, when we talk about "Role Models". Who can trust Meyer about anything if that's the case.

And please don't tell me again that I can't prove intent.

Psted by: Andrea | November 30, 2007 at 12:50 PM because you can't ...


I did graduate from UM, BBA-Finance '94.

I understand your point. All I'm saying is that I don't believe that Shannon intentionally lied, I just think he was trying to make a point and made a mistake. You obviously feel differently, and from your perspective I can see why. I do hope that Shannon will make an attempt to clarify his comments at some point in the near future.

I'm not going to debate this any further. It doesn't affect my life enough to spend anymore time thinking about it or debating it with strangers on an internet blog.

Good luck and have a great weekend.

Thanks for the link, Green. I hope this is true, and I hope we find out what really happened Sunday night.

Okay I've read enough. I received my undergraduate degree from Princeton and my Masters from Miami--and am very proud of both degrees!! I'm more of a pro sports kind of guy and obviously am not a fan of any SEC or Big 10 team, BUT my sense of rationality impels me to call out for any Miami grads out there who also see this entire incident as an unmitigated fiasco.

I've already had friends calling me up to harass me about the memory impairment of Miami's head football coach. Since I tend to be an affirmative action kind of guy I wasn't even going to comment, but the responses on this blog are so over the top as to leave me dumbfounded.

I'm glad i've reached this point in my life without being so blindly loyal to a sports entity that I would come here and try to rationalize what is either a character flaw by an individual who would lie in such a blatant manner OR a psychological state that would cause a disconnect from reality.

I'm proud of having a degree from Miami, but that doesn't mean that I have to close my eyes to the facts and walk lockstep with people who are so afraid of being impacted negatively in football recruiting that they become similiar to Baghdad Bob in their pronouncements.

Snap Out Of It!!! A sizeable portion of the sporting public in America is reading our reactions to the fabrications of our Head Coach.

put a fork in Randy... he's done... or if he stays one more day longer then put the fork in UM's football program...

Justin Timmons,

You view this incident as unmitigated fiasco? Man, you've lost your mind. The point Shannon tried to make remains true. The details may not be, but that's where the haters want to focus on.

Shannon was absolutely right on his main point. UF and Ohio State have a record that is far more damaging than anything that UM has had in the past 10 years. The players are more likely to be killed or arrested at UF / Ohio State compared to U of Miami.

So, grow a pair and support the U. I have my suspicions about your credibility, but I'll let that pass for now.

the image that your perpetuate is the image you get back. UM reveled the the thug image for the last 30 years...then call foul when they are portrayed as thugs.

Ohio State has 17 arrests in the Jim Tressell era. Two in the last two years. One was Alex Boone for under age consumption, the other was 3rd string quarterback Antonio Henton who was arrested (yeah, he's not too bright) for offering a girl $20 for some action. I am not justifying anything, but since Coach Sweater Vest has been able to get his kids into OSU, our arrests have droppped dramatically. Maybe Coach Shannon should read and recite facts before slandering. I hope he does get the Hurricanes back to their old form, as our rematches in a couple of years will be awesome. GO BUCKS! Good luck Hurricanes, I know you folks will find your identity again. It just takes a little time and a lot of effort.

PS - No current or former Buckeye has been shot in Columbus, on campus or off. EVER.

The NW boys are wavering and might go to Oregon!!! What will Shannon do if he can't sign these players?

DanR, Somehow I think he could have made those points without telling a lie that we would expect to hear at a Dade County Council Meeting. If you have kids, do you instruct them to fabricate garbage instead of relying on the truth to make their points??

Whether or not you think Shannon Misspoke, the fact remains that the media has a major bais agianst the University of Miami. Those of you who keep talking about Hio State having only 17 arrests during a certain span of time, why dont you find out how many Miami Kids have been arrested in that same period. Sean Taylor (RIP) gets shot in his home and somehow the University of Miami is to blame. Andrea and all the other fools, hear this: Worse things happen at OSU, UF, FSU and all the other schools. I dont care if you think Shannon was lying. THIS IS A UM BLOG...GET OUT OF OUR BUSINESS. If you take offense to Randy's Comments then please go to your teams blog and bitch about it. I speak for all in the U family. ALl this negative is enough. Just leave us alone.

Ecomug - I only responded to the statements about Ohio State pal. I have no issues with U of Miami, but if you want to compare crime rates for the city of Miami versus those for Columbus you should know that Miami's is quite a bit worse. As for arrests of current and former players over the last 5 years, U of Miami has way more. As for Sean Taylor, he never deserved what he got. May the blessings of God be with his daughter and family.

31-24 bitches..........

Such a tragedy. The kid was at a birthday party at Sean's house. The other kid cut his lawn.

Are we raising monsters in Miami?


Bet u guys forgot us original bloggers call ourselves that. Anyways I am in Iraq I got a couple comments
2. Other schools are way worse then Miami RS asked to go look it up so go do the research I lived in Columbus and RS point was that the papers and even espn does not beat up other schools the way they do Miami and that is true. Other schools have people robbing each other and commiting serious crimes, We have that sometimes at the "U" as well but we get 10 times the negative publicity and that is the main point.
3. Everyone missspeaks or forgets things I think intent is what is important and i do not believe RS has intended to lie when he gave his interview.

Such a tragedy. The kid was at a birthday party at Sean's house. The other kid cut his lawn.

Are we raising monsters in Miami?

Posted by: Denny 2 | December 01, 2007 at 01:28 AM those monsters hail from ft myers ...

Manny I think that the coach is absolutely right. Anything with the letters UM attached is automaticly perceived to be criminal, rude, or arrogant. It is not our fault that success breeds envy and that we have been signaled out as what not to do even if we do right. So you know what Manny ? What we should do is start to win!
Double our aggressive pursuit of excellence and give you what you want, something to talk about. Eventhough Sean had been out of school for 4yrs and was a Redskin you and every ohter local outlet kept refering to him as " UM standout" or "former UM safety", hardly pointing out that he is one of the most feared players in the NFL! Are you biased in an anti UM tone ? For sure ! Do we care ? Nah , It doesn't matter because if history really repeats itself you are about to witness one of the greatest comebacks in NCAA football history. We will be back ! Inspite of the shootings, arrests, or scandoulous half-true media portrayals, we will be back. Get your pen ready BOY!

This is to the scumbag that calls herself ECOMUG you got a break from a bastard ref thats all! the game was over in the endzone bitch, i hope you and that ref rot! we will meet again buddy UM will see ou again!

Randy will say anything to anybody at this point during recruiting season. Florida and Ohio State run some of cleanest, best programs in college football.
I guess Randy needs to lie to recruits and
UM fans to please them. Desperate!!!

It is incredible that anyone could dispute the rational comments made by J Timmons, unless that person were incapable of rational thought. The bogus story concocted by Randy Shannon just makes him look stupid and does nothing to defend the reputation of the University of Miami. How can someone not be aware of his best friend for thirteen years? That is not how you cultivate friends or establish personal credibility. For the University to dismiss this as "Coach Shannon misspoke," is quite lame. Is this the best that the Sports Information Department can do?

Utah Cane: are you a gaturd incognito?

And Randy Shannon wants to talk about what kind of person Urban Meyer is for kicking a field goal in a football game?!?!?! Randy Shannon is a lying whining crybaby!

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