« Wall gives UM high marks after visit | Main | Kentucky reportedly wins John Wall recruiting battle »

Can the Canes get back to Omaha?

Mid May has traditionally been the time of year on the South Florida sports calendar when the UM baseball team suddenly begins to draw interest from folks that didn't really care about them except during those early season FSU or Florida series.

Kyle Bellamy and Yasmani Grandal celebrated an ACC title last year. Now, they're just hoping UM can get hot and make it back to Omaha. Right about now is when coach Jim Morris and his team begin popping up on nightly sports telecasts, and the fairweather fans who no longer have the Heat or Panthers to watch in the playoffs -- or are tired of the up-and-down struggles of the Marlins -- begin wondering how their team is doing in the old "ping league." Even UM football diehards who are glued to Canesport's football recruiting wire will lift their heads up from their computers for five minutes to ask: How many weeks until Omaha?

It's what Morris and his team has gotten us South Floridians accustomed to. They've spoiled us really. What we expect is for the most reliable team in the sports market -- the one that always has that hefty national ranking, the slew of big home run bats, and that combo of left-handers who bring the heat -- to be ready to deliver excitement for about three weeks, to have us on edge and suddenly yearning for that sound (PING!)

Sorry to break it to you casual observers, but the forecast for the pinging Canes doesn't look good. Unless the Canes turn it around big time and in a hurry, the milkshake guy at The Light has served his last Omaha Express. And fans who were hoping to watch Scott Lawson do his stanky leg dance are going to have to hope TV cameras catch it.

Earlier this week, I caught up with the Canes before they left Wednesday in must-win mode for their final regular season ACC series at Wake Forest. Miami, ranked 24th by Baseball America, has gone 8-10 over the past month. The Canes have had plenty of icky losses. North Florida beat them. Bethune-Cookman took two of three from them last weekend at The Light no less.

Players know the only way they'll get to play at home again is if they get hot and stun everyone at next week's ACC Tournament in Durham. So can they do it? And more importantly, can they get back to Omaha? Ask closer Kyle Bellamy that question and he might spit venom at you.

“Of course we can get hot,” said Bellamy who with a 3-1 record, 1.15 ERA and 14 saves has been the only consistent arm on the staff Miami has had all season. “We were No. 2 in the nation for awhile. We’re definitely capable. We just have to get that mentality back we had when we swept the Gators in Gainesville and we took 2 of 3 from FSU. I think we just need to get that chip back on our shoulder – the one we had when were trying to prove to everyone we were a pretty good team."

The problem for Miami is that it's going to take more than an attitude adjustment. It's going to take a major overhaul. Only three hitters -- Scott Lawson (.348), Chris Hermann (.314) and Jason Hagerty (.313) -- are batting better than .300. While ace Chris Hernandez has gotten his act together (he's now 6-3 with a 4.24 ERA after a horrendous start), No. 2 starter David Gutierrez is still looking for his first win since March 7th.

Morris had loftier expectations when the season began despite the fact he lost three first round picks and a boatload of talented players from a team that went 53-11 and entered the College World Series last year expecting to win a fifth national title. But despite the recent setbacks Morris hasn't lost hope. Heck, if Fresno State did it last year why can't the Canes?

“We’ve proven we can beat some of the best teams in college baseball and we’ve proven if we don’t go out and play well we’re not going to win,” Morris said. “We’ve put our backs against the wall no question about that. But I know we can respond. I think we’ve swung the bats really good against some good teams, and any team in the Top 25 has a chance to get hot this time of year. Fresno State was 82nd last year and they won it. We have a lot of young players who can grow up quickly over the next few weeks."

As it stands, even if Miami were to win next week's ACC Tournament, the likelyhood remains they could be on the road in the regionals because the NCAA isn't likely to grant more than two in-state teams the right to host. Both the Gators and Seminoles are ranked higher than UM at the moment and both have had much better regular seasons to this point. As it stands, Baseball America projects Miami will be making the trip to Gainesville.

That doesn't bode well for UM. When the Canes have reached Omaha in the past, they've usually done it playing at home. Of their 23 trips to the CWS, only four were achieved by winning a regional on the road (2006, 1996, 1989, 1984, 1974). Morris said this team in his eyes compares a lot to his 2002 team, which won a regional in Gainesville, but then loss a heart breaker to South Carolina in the Super Regional a week later.

“It’s very important for us to host regionals,” Bellamy said. “There was a lot of inspiration we got our own fans last year in those tight games. Sometimes traveling and being in the airplanes and the hotels can wear on you. Hosting Regionals would definitely be a huge lift. Hopefully, it’s not too late and we can turn it on.”

JUST A FEW QUICK NOTES...
> After spending the past month on Marlins detail, I will be going on the road with the baseball team to Durham next week. So, if you want to talk baseball while I'm there, shoot me some questions on the blog or email. I'll probably be live blogging the games.

Eduardo Clements > This week with the Marlins on the road and Clark Spencer on the beat, I got a chance to make my rounds to a few local high schools to catch up on the recruiting front. For those of you interested, I posted three videos -- including an interview with Booker T. Washington running back Eduardo Clements.

While I'm still very skeptical UM will be able to get any of the Tornadoes' top recruits, you should know the Canes at least have a new constant presence on campus. Tim Harris Jr., the son of former coach Ice Harris and a star in track at UM, has begun his high school coaching career this spring at Booker T. He's coaching the quarterbacks. That alone should help Miami stay in contention for Clements, receiver Quinton Dunbar, and defensive end Lyden Trail, who recently picked up an offer from USC.

> As for Miami Springs highly-touted receiver Willis Wright, Miami has definitely offered Wright and is intered in him. But they aren't nearly as interested as Florida State, which has already had five coaches come down to meet with the 6-3, 200-pound receiver in the past year. Miami Springs coach Alex Pacheco told me Monday Wesley McGriff visited the school last year, but no one from UM has been out there yet this spring. Wright got his formal offer from UM in the mail. Physically, Wright is one of the most impressive receivers I've ever seen in Miami-Dade. I'd throw him in the same category as Aldarius Johnson, Dwayne Bowe and Andre Johnson.

> For those of you still on edge over Frank Haith's chase of John Wall, Miami is definitely in the race for the nation's top available recruit. The people I spoke to this week on Wall's behalf told me UM is in his top three and under serious consideration. Wall, by the way, is apparently considering stretching his decision making process past the May 20th deadline.

> In case you missed it, our live weekly Q&As on MiamiHerald.com have been shut down until the start of football season. I'm now doing Marlins Q&As on Tuesdays at 2 p.m. If you want to shoot me questions, feel free to email them to me or place them on the blog. I'm thinking of starting up a Monday Mailbag session if I get some good questions from you.

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

That is a reality wussies - The U is loaded with young talent - that is why the new-fangled champs in Gaytorville are worried i.e, their improbable run is coming to an abrupt end. Reality is that Alabama, LSU, Tennessee are also getting stronger (Ol' Miss is still out there), so the inbred air-bags from Crackerville are popping off now before they will have to shut their pie-holes and go into hibernation like the decades before. They know deep down that they won't be able to stop the Canes - and they will not even win the SEC.

They are scared to put UM on their schedule, but the U will do it just like before - Canes will beat you in that cestpool you call the swamp, beat you in MIami and beat you in a bowl game...anywhere.. it's coming.

By the way, even when you don't want to consider history (cause their is no debating that the Canes own you and you will never match what the Canes have done in the past, including the recent past (5 rings and one stolen by a sell out referee), I still fail to comprehend how anyone can continue to trash talk the U when the Canes have dominated the Gaytors for over the last decade (1 exception last year)- REALITY CHECK: Canes swept the Baseball Gaytors at their place this year and knocked the tennis Gaytors out a few days ago... What in your tiny brain justifies your trash talking based on this track record? I guess reality is starting to set in, i.e, you know that T-bag will be gone after this year and so will your lying and cheating coach: Urban "stayoutofmyfootballofficeunlessyou praiseme" Myers" (to Notre Dame)... scared little boy?

By the way Davis is a top notch player with a proven blood line - and,unlike the NFL Gaytors (NFL stands for "Not for Long" when it comes to Gaytors), many of the top players that the U has put into the NFL and who have been successful there were not 5 star recruits. At the U we play the game on the field not on paper - so keep reading Rivals.Com while the Canes go out and find real football players and prepare them for the NFL ...

Smoke and mirror gimmicks may work in high school and college, but they don't work in the NFL fool - that's why your players don't accomplish anything at the next level once they leave Deliverance Country!!!

CAT 5 is brewing - We own U little boy!!!

So take down your confederate flags, hide your wooden rockers and hound dogs, clear out the porch, batten down the hatches and evacuate your trailers, I mean homes, cause weez coming your way Billy Bob! Don't forget to grab your little sister Betty Sue and your 15 barefooted babies and run for the hills... cause a CAT 5 storm is brewing in your neck of the woods, and the radar shows it coming your way - weee doggie!!!

Look on the bright side, the down time for the Gaytors will allow you to go make more inbred redneck babies with your litrle sister - this is important so that the UF future student pipeline remains full.

Sorry for the typo in my last post - it is 'Gainesville Sucks"...

But for us Canes' fans it's just so hard to type with 5 big, heavy national championship rings on our fingers!

why would the Canes or FSU want to join a conference that has a losing record against the ACC?

Canes wallop wake again; improve to 34-18, 17-12

PENULTIMATE

when was the last time the crocks played and out of conference away game outside the state of florida

Sure Wall will want to check out some clubs on SoBe. Beyond that U aint got a SHOT !
Keep dreaming

Posted by: gaturd agent provocateur | April 23, 2009 at 04:21 PM

dreams is right
2nd tier basketball school
U want a 1st tier school?
Six Gators are in the NBA playoffs — Udonis Haslem, Joakim Noah, Al Horford, Marreese Speights, Anthony Roberson and Matt Bonner.
No Ambien needed

Posted by: gaturd agent provocateur | April 23, 2009 at 04:39 PM

http://blogs.gainesville.com/default.asp?item=2377466

YOU’RE OUT

im just wondering what the UM fans would think IF FIU lands 5 star recruit Lance "born ready" Stephenson (McDonald all american Guard) roughly a month of IT' era while it has taken Frank Haith this long to be under consideration for Mark Wall.

Posted by: CJ | May 13, 2009 at 03:49 PM

http://www.zagsblog.com/2009/05/15/lances-attorney-says-hes-innocent-fiu-out-of-the-mix/

it takes a pervert to spot a pervert …

PERVERTED JUSTICE

http://blogs.palmbeachpost.com/caneswatch/

blog remake …

THUMBS UP

CJ: is that supposed to be a jab at Haith? It is such a weak argument. Stephenson would consider MDCC-South if IT was the coach. Try again.

He called him Mark Wall when everyone knows his name is John Wall

That should let us know how much we should put into that opinion

DAU!!!!

What's up with FIU people and names? First they introduce their new coach as Isiah Thompson, then here this genius CJ is dreaming about FIU landing top recruits and calls the #1 recruit in the nations "Mark" Wall instead of "John"....WOW! They must not be used to sports over there at FIU...

Wall's coming to the U so get Used to it...

It's a Canes' thing, you would'nt understand.

"Six Gators are in the NBA playoffs — Udonis Haslem, Joakim Noah, Al Horford, Marreese Speights, Anthony Roberson and Matt Bonner.
No Ambien needed"

Posted by: gaturd agent provocateur | April 23, 2009 at 04:39 PM

....And all 6 suck - they are all second tier role players...just like your NFL Gaytors....

You are out of the Wall race,,,,LMAO...

Posted by: c-UM | May 15, 2009 at 11:57 AM

I know it was Wake, but does it matter who you play to get it together? When you're hot, you're hot. That is all I was saying. Hopefully, they can carry that into the ACC tourne.

BTW, the Canes are the only team to put 23 on them this year. Just sayin'.

GO CANES!!!

So they played Wake. At least its a conference game you c-UMmoron! UF played: FGCU and Jacksonville recently and then Kentucky as well-lost to FGCU, 2/3 to LSU, and one to UK.

These gator ba-trds talk so much garbage and none of it means anything!

You will have the worst defense in the HISTORY of UM football in 2009.

When does the unqualified coach get fired?

These gator ba-trds talk so much garbage and none of it means anything!

Posted by: Enough with the gtr sht please | May 17, 2009 at 07:43 PM

The more U talk about it... The more it means.

"The more U talk about it... The more it means"

Posted by: U Keep Listening To Those Voices Stuck In Ur Head | May 18, 2009 at 02:48 PM

WTF does that mean?

That incoherent retarded comment just shows the level of stupidity that we have to put up with on this blog from Gaytor fans. What a moron!

Boy, if you had a brain you would be dangerous...! Keep posting these stupid comments here and continue to flaunt your ignorance...you are a great spokesperson for your school - I am sure all Gaytor fans are proud of you and how you represent them here.

Is english your first language, or are you a typical stupid Gaytor?

TO ALL CANES'FANS: before you get upset at the comments from this mental midget, consider the source.

Is english your first language, or are you a typical stupid Gaytor?

TO ALL CANES'FANS: before you get upset at the comments from this mental midget, consider the source.

Posted by: Canes1 | May 18, 2009 at 09:29 PM


yes ... no ... maybe . U keep talking


u keep thinking too canes1


T-blown is at best a late first round.
IS that a surprise?
The UF offense is full of tricks and stunts, taking advantage of two small speedsters in the backfield, one of which (Harvin) is NOT a rb, rather a wr/punt returner. That is akin to putting in Roscoe Parish or Sinorice Moss in as tailback: IT IS NOT REALITY! It also takes advantage of the fact that Melonhead is a full fledged full back, and therefore, for all practical purposes, it is a pseudo-wildcat offense with the addition of end arounds and other gimmicky crap. LBs have to watch out for 3 eligible runners then, plus the wide receivers. This clearly doesnt work in the NFL. THAT is why the NFL IS NOT choc full of former gator players. It's Smoke and Mirrors, thanks to Urban the Turban.

Welcome home Uban ... S. F.L.A. a nice place to visit huh ?

It's Smoke and Mirrors, thanks to Urban the Turban.

Posted by: Smoke and Mirrors offense | May 19, 2009 at 06:35 AM

u ban , da man, likey the smoke n mirrors ...

it bringy da 'ships

John Wall just committed to Kentucky. Oh well at least we gave it all we had. Good luck hoops.

Canesfan91 posted it before I could. Here's the link:

http://basketballrecruiting.rivals.com/content.asp?CID=947244

Dang, thought we could have snagged him.

U starting to realize Ur place in the recruiting Pecking Order Cane fan ?


Ur just a free trip to Sobe to these kids... Not a place to actually sign and play.

« 1 2

The comments to this entry are closed.