University of Florida receiver Louis Murphy had something special to say about The U after the Gators' season-opening win against Hawaii Saturday. Consider it the first real shot in a war of words that will likely continue this week leading up to the showdown in the Swamp.
"If I'm right, the 'U' stands for the University of Miami," Murphy told our Joseph Goodman after the game (CLICK HERE TO LISTEN). "Well, we're the University of Florida. We're the 'U.' I don't refer to them as the 'U.' I refer to them as Miami. If the 'U' is for university and winning and championships, we're the 'U.' They are Miami, and that's what I call them."
Let's just say the message has been received. I spoke with UM receiver Leonard Hankerson tonight for a feature story I'm doing on him and close friend Major Wright, who starts at safety for the Gators and who played with Hankerson at Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas High.
Hankerson said when he arrived at UM Sunday night for a practice closed to the media, a copy of Murphy's quote had been blown up and posted in every locker. "It definitely pumped us up," Hankerson said by phone. "We were already pumped up for this game, but now the guys are really getting excited.
"We all want to win bad. Right now, we feel like nobody in the nation respects Miami. We're going to earn our respect."
I don't know about you, but I can't wait for this game on Saturday.
PS - For those of you wondering who Louis Murphy is, he's the guy who starts opposite Percy Harvin. He had 37 catches for 548 yards and 6 TDs last season. He had 2 catches for 51 yards and 1 touchdown against Hawaii. And he's a Recreation Event Management major from St. Petersburg.