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Will freshman QB Stephen Morris be UM's savior?

Monsignor Pace football coach Alvin Slaughter got a call Monday he wasn't expecting. On the other side of the phone was Lamar Thomas.

The former Hurricanes' message to Slaughter: "'The whole program rests on your boys' shoulders," Slaughter said Thomas told him. "I was like 'Oh God, this is more pressure than I need.' "

Stephen Morris The boy Thomas was referring to was freshman quarterback Stephen Morris, whom Slaughter coached for four seasons at Pace. Barring a miraculous recovery from a concussion by starter Jacory Harris (we should learn how long he'll be out Tuesday), Morris, a 6-2, 185-pound freshman, will make his first collegiate start for the Hurricanes (5-3, 3-2 ACC) Saturday when Maryland (6-2, 3-1) visits Sun Life Stadium for a noon kickoff.

Slaughter plans to be there, where figures he will be more nervous than Morris was in the second half last Saturday when he went from fourth string (and a potential redshirt season) to nearly rallying the Hurricanes from a 24-0 deficit in the fourth quarter at Virginia. 

"He called me right after the game and asked me 'How did I look coach? I was like 'Honestly? You looked nervous as hell.'" Slaughter said Monday of his former quarterback, who threw two interceptions, then settled down and led UM to 19 points with two touchdowns passes and a nine-yard TD run in the fourth quarter.

"He asked me, 'Well, What did you expect from me?' I said, 'I expected you to lead this team to victory, nothing less.' 

"I actually believe if they would have had another possession that he would have gotten it done. They would have won. I know he's one of my guys. But if you look at the turn of events, the last two possessions he scored touchdowns. You could see he was having success, guys were starting to rally around him. Those guys were smiling, patting him on the head. That was building confidence. Once you get confidence in a player and a football team, you could pretty much do anything."

For Morris, anything could potentially include trying to saving the Hurricanes' season and coach Randy Shannon's job. That's a pretty significant upgrade in role from a week ago when Morris was under the impression he was going to redshirt this season. It wasn't until recently when backup A.J. Highsmith injured his wrist that Slaughter said Morris started working a little bit less with the scout team -- just in case.

"To be honest with you I think he was only getting scout team reps last week," Slaughter said. "So, the only plays he knew were plays he knew from earlier on in the season. Those were the only reps he did -- and the individual reps with coach Whipple they do every week. [Spencer] Whipple and Jacory and Highsmith were getting those other reps. If you put that into the equation, the kid probably played good to great under those circumstances. I mean it was basic stuff they were running for him. It was like they just hoped they executed well and prayed for the best."

"When he gets more reps  this week, I feel more comfortable he can do even better. They just have to limit the play selection and let the guys around him make the plays, not make Stephen Morris win with his big arm. But I don't coach the University of Miami. I'm just saying what I would do."

When Slaughter said he spoke to Morris Monday, he told him he was very happy and very excited for him. But Slaughter said he also warned Morris to not get too giddy about his new opportunity because .

"I just told him whatever happens you better go back to being humble because that's what always kills football players -- the success and not being able to handle it," Slaughter said. "It's like marrying Halle Berry, Paris Hilton or Kim Kardashian. You wouldn't know how to act.

"I told Stephen, 'You better eat a big piece of that humble pie and lead this football team in the right direction. Because that's what they need, they need a leader.' I don't like throwing stones. I live in a glass house too. I just think he needs to go out there and let the team know he's not going to force anything and let the game come to him. Once he has the support of his teammates, he'll be just fine."

As a junior in 2008, Morris led Pace to the Class 3A state semifinals where they lost on a last-second field goal to eventual state champion Cocoa. In a shotgun-based spread offense, Morris completed 64 percent of his passes for 2,005 yards, 19 touchdowns and nine interceptions. But a year later when his three talented receivers (Sterling Griffin, Kayvon Webster and Derrick Hopkins) left for the University of South Florida, Morris went under center and ran a pro-style offense. Pace didn't have a great season, missing the playoffs for the first time in 18 years. But Morris did well, completing 96 of his 179 passes (53.6 percent) for 1,531 yards, 22 touchdowns and six interceptions.

Stephen Morris2 Along the way, he caught the eye of Canes offensive coordinator Mark Whipple, who monitored him closely before hand-picking him to be his future quarterback.

"It pretty much came down Stephen and a kid from California," Slaughter said of UM's recruiting efforts. "I think in the beginning Whipple didn't know Stephen had a big arm. If you saw Stephen throw the long out to Benjamin for the touchdown [Saturday], that's why he's there. When Whipple realized Stephen had a big arm and could throw that 18 to 20-yard out pattern -- something Whipple talked about wanting in his offense -- he absolutely loved him. Plus, when he heard Stephen was a good student with a 4.0 GPA, 1000 on his SAT, was graduating early and could get in the system, all that just made Stephen that even more appealing. Whipple got a kid who was football smart, very intelligent with a high IQ. That's what you want in your quarterback."

And essentially, Slaughter said, what Whipple also liked was that Morris was a quarterback who fit his system. Harris, who went 30-0 as a starter at Miami Northwestern, ran the shotgun spread offense for two years in high school.

Slaughter said Morris has told him he feels comfortable in UM's offense because most of it requires him to be under center, something he did frequently as a senior.

"What Miami does isn't Oregon's offense, four, five wide -- it's not fun on the turf," Slaughter said. "It's playaction, misdirection, use your tight end.

"What Stephen has told me is that Whipple has a lot of different formations, sets and things that he does. But Stephen said one thing that he took from what we did  that has helped him is running the fast pace, hurry-up offense. We did a lot of that from under center. The cadences are similar too. That's helped out a lot, too. Honestly, that's why I go to coaching clinics so I can adjust it and my kids aren't that far behind when they go into college systems."

Slaughter said another reason he believes Morris will be a success under Whipple is his arm strength. Unlike Harris who floats the ball downfield on deep passes, Slaughter said Morris can "throw the ball on a rope 72 yards."

If there is an area Slaughter said Morris might need to work on, it's being more of a vocal leader. But he doesn't necessarily consider that a weakness either.

"He's a lead by example guy," Slaughter said. "When I had him, I would tell him, 'You got to setup the cones, you got to do this or that.' Stephen would do it it at 100 miles per hour. He would be the first one on the field, last one off after practice. He'd tell his receivers, 'Let's go, I need to throw 100 passes, you need to catch 100 passes. Let's do it.' He isn't rah-rah. He's all business.

"The bottomline is he just wants to win. I know when he threw those interceptions, he went to his teammates and said 'Sorry guys, but you can count me. I won't throw another one.' He seeks perfection. He knows those mistakes are terrible and he doesn't accept it."

One way or another, Slaughter believes what Hurricanes fans saw in the fourth quarter last Saturday in Charlottesville was just the beginning for Morris.

"I really believe that they've got themselves the future with Stephen," Slaughter said. "And if not this year, they've finally got themselves a damn good backup. He's a tough kid. Sometimes quarterbacks don't get labeled tough. But they got themselves a tough kid with thick skin. I mean I rip him, lay into him. I've let him have it. I won't share any stories. But I've ripped that boy to shreds and he'll just let it roll off. He's thick skinned. You can coach him hard. As a quarterback, you're going to get it from all angles. You have to take the good and the bad. Stephen can do that."

"Hopefully it works out with the University of Miami. Sometimes, you just need an opportunity, a blessing from the skies and this could be one for The U."

Comments

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a high football IQ and a big arm. its what we've been missing from the QB position. maybe now whipples offense will work.

i wonder who the cali qb he talked about was... scroggins, bray, rettig, nottingham, montana? just curious

not montana

We, as fans, need to stop making comments that push recruits away. I'm not sure why we r not winning,

Manny, I beg of you! Please, please, please, find a way to slip this post to Coach Shannon by any means necessary!!!!!!!!


Gary Ferman
CaneSport.com Publisher

Everyone agrees that there is something wrong with the Miami Hurricanes.

The challenge is putting a finger on what it is.

The team’s inconsistent play is maddening. The results are frustrating. The losses are mounting.

It’s all falling apart on Randy Shannon, who needs to find some answers very quickly.

So what would you do if you were the CEO of this empire that is The U?

Here’s my shot at it.

Well, I would change just about everything, to be honest.

I don’t see anything working right now for Shannon in any way other than the fact that players are going to class, graduating and staying off police blotters.

The impressive track record in the academic and social side of the University will buy Shannon some time and probably give him another football season to get things right on the field. But he has lost his base of support among fans and many former players. The media had enough of his dictatorial ways a long time ago. He won’t get any benefits of the doubt there either.

The CEO spot is a tough place to be when things go bad, even tougher when your ways have alienated so many people and factions.

Is it too late for Shannon? Not necessarily. He has the talent base to turn things back around quickly.

Let me put it this way. A lot of coaches would be dying to take his place and start from the point where Shannon has brought this program.

But it isn’t a time for stubbornness on the part of the head coach. He has to recognize and be open-minded about where he is going wrong and be willing to adjust.

There are a million opinions floating around on what Shannon must do. Here’s my CEO plan to turn the Randy Shannon era around:

No. 1: Change the offensive philosophy and mindset

The Hurricanes have been trying to put a square peg into a round hole for two seasons now. Let’s make one thing perfectly clear – there is nothing wrong with Mark Whipple’s offense and Whipple is potentially a great offensive coordinator. The problem from my neutral perspective is that he doesn’t have the right quarterback to execute what he is trying to do, hasn’t gone and recruited a high-level pro-style passer in his time here and is stubbornly not adjusting to the above by running the football and taking advantage of the quality backs he does have at his disposal.

I have seen enough of Lamar Miller to believe he is a franchise running back. Damien Berry and Mike James are workhorses who are probably the most consistent players on the team. Storm Johnson seems as if he is only a notch behind Miller on the ability meter. Graig Cooper is looking better each week in his recovery from knee surgery.

I’ll go so far as to say that this team has five running backs who will play in the NFL.

Yet the outcome of the game is never in their hands. The Hurricanes seem always obsessed with the downfield passing game and the turnovers this team suffers through because of that is maddening. Against North Carolina, Whipple ran the ball more and enjoyed the best half of the season.

It’s as if Whipple is at a blackjack table in Vegas trying to win $1,000 and doesn’t have the patience to grind it out for an hour or two at a $25 table. He has to make his big score in the first five minutes after he sits down. I kind of understand that. I am the same way sometimes. But I am not sure it will work in the game of football with this cast of players. This isn’t Marino and the Marks Brothers or Peyton with Reggie Wayne.

Too much has been placed on the back of Jacory Harris, who was raised in a spread offense and just doesn’t seem comfortable enough in a pro-style attack. Now Harris is recovering from a concussion and may not be able to play against Maryland.

The running excuse is that the team went in the tank when Harris went down and found itself down 24-0 because of it. I’m not buying it. When a team is backed into a corner, that is when it is supposed to stand strongest and toughest. That didn’t happen.

And why were Spencer Whipple and Stephen Morris exposed to that wave of interceptions in the first place? Why not run the football more and use safer passes the way Whipple did in the fourth quarter when Morris excelled?

I say build the offense from the inside/out around Lamar Miller and Storm Johnson, two young guys who will be here for at least two to three more seasons, and a young offensive line with enormous potential.

The asterisk here is that offensive line, which has been brutally inconsistent. At times, they have been great. At times, they have been bad. There is no consistency and no discipline. They take way too many penalties in almost every game. They need to get tougher mentally and physically.

I am not sure if this reflects on the coaching of Jeff Stoutland or not. Let’s call it a group effort and suggest they all must step up their game. And then Whipple must trust and rely on them.

No. 2: Get Bill Young / Greg Schiano Aggressive On Defense

Shannon looks like he will continue to live and die on his long-standing defensive principles that worked in 2001 and 2002 and right now he is dying from them. Miami simply doesn’t have the talent to sit back in basic schemes and beat anybody good.

It’s hard to change in mid-season, but it clearly is time for something different. I’m not saying blitz every down like Young or Schiano might. But get after the quarterback in passing situations. Don’t watch a game like Saturday’s go down the tubes at the end because you passively sit back and let a bad team make big play after big play because you aren’t attacking it.

The huge runs being allowed in the ground game at various points are a tougher issue to solve. They are part of a general lack of toughness that seems to be one of this team’s biggest problems as well as talent deficiencies at defensive tackle and linebacker. Those problems are unfortunately not going away and may not be solved for a couple of seasons due to average recruiting at those spots. They will just have to be overcome by more solid play in other areas. But a more aggressive approach on defense might create more big plays that help remedy that problem.

No. 3: Get Back To A Normal Practice Schedule

I’ve covered the Hurricanes for 31 seasons. Those grueling practices in the heat of the afternoon were where this team always developed a winning edge and built toughness.

Those 6 a.m. practices, they were punishment when the team didn’t play well, not the norm.

Shannon believes in early morning drills. Nobody knows if taking sleep away from the kids is a major factor in the sluggishness of the team on game day. But I do know young kids never go to bed early. And I do know waking up at 5 a.m. isn’t helping anything other than maybe keeping the team off South Beach on a Tuesday night.

Start practicing in the afternoon again!

No. 4: Overhaul the Strength Training and Conditioning Program

Miami was pushed around again on Saturday at Virginia, not quite at the FSU level, but pushed around badly nonetheless. Any team that gets physical with the Hurricanes usually wins, and word of such is filtering all over the ACC and college football. Shannon needs to totally evaluate everything in this department, especially the training of linemen. Are their struggles a byproduct of soft training or is it an issue of mental demeanor and mindset?

No. 5: Start Treating The Media With Respect

In his time, Shannon has taken a program with the best media relations in the country and turned it into one of the worst. It’s time to change and start respecting the job that writers and broadcasters do by no longer dictating who can and who can’t be spoken to on every given day or after games. Not one coach who won national titles at Miami ever did this. Miami has always been an open media school. For some reason, Shannon is almost obsessed with this area of the program and controlling access.

Change doesn’t mean that the locker room has to be totally open again after games. But there is some middle ground. Simply allow reporters and broadcasters the opportunity to talk to the people they need to talk to on a daily basis to do their jobs well. Shannon must stop running the media side of the program as if everyone lives in North Korea.

Reporters are left to write stories full of inaccuracies because of attempts to withhold information each week. Even feel good stories like Stephen Morris’ fourth quarter at Virginia are untold because Shannon didn’t let the kid talk to the media after the game. Could that be more ridiculous?

This is a problem that has been getting progressively worse, not better. It is no surprise that Shannon is getting shredded now on every radio talk show and in newspaper columns and blogs. Folks in the media are not members of his fan club and that is a shame for Shannon, who has always been a good guy with good intentions for the kids he coaches and well-liked by others who come into contact with him. Why did becoming a head coach have to change all of that? Shannon must change back while he still has time to do so. If not, the end is going to be rather ugly.

No. 6: Rebuild Relationships with Former Players

When Shannon got the head coaching job there was celebration among the Canes player alumni base. There was great pride that one of their own was receiving the opportunity to take over the program.

Then Shannon stopped returning most of their phone calls.

From Day One of the Shannon era I have slowly watched Shannon’s base of support among the playing alumni disintegrate. The stories were always the same. The guys felt shut out and unwanted by Shannon.

When you are the head coach, you walk a fine line here. You need to show your peers respect, but you can’t have 30 former players telling you what you should do as coach either. But perhaps Shannon can find some middle ground here. Is there any reason that any phone call needs to go unreturned by at least a support staff member?

No. 7: Redshirt More Freshmen And It Will Pay Future Dividends

There are too many wasted freshman seasons. Start redshirting more young kids and give them the proper time to mature and develop. It will pay off when they are third year sophomores rather than juniors and still have three years of eligibility left. For example, why is Storm Johnson not redshirting this year? Was he really needed to return kickoffs when you have Miller and Graig Cooper available?

Miami has a lack of seasoned leaders this year. More fifth year seniors will go a long way toward helping that situation in the future.

No. 8: Rebuild Community Relations

Shannon attended a previously scheduled lunch with the fans in Boca Raton on Monday. It was session two of a compromise he worked out with the Hurricane Club to make an appearance in the community and mingle with supporters of the program.

But, for the most part, Shannon has made it clear he has no use for fan and booster events, canceling long-running luncheons and breakfasts with supporters and not even showing up for Canes Fest events.

So it is no surprise that Shannon has a minimal base of support now that things have gone bad for him. That was the risk he took when he crafted his approach.

This is another off-season issue, but Shannon needs to totally change his viewpoint and spend more time engaging and reaching out to people who support the Miami program. Of course if he doesn’t start winning, nothing will help.

Well, that’s my plan.


Atlanta Cane4life - Wow ... just Wow !!!
Man this makes so much good sense....
CEO is a tough job indeed ...

Did this Cat Ferman watch a different game than I did this past Saturday? Whipple started the game by trying to run the ball and each time he did Berry got stuffed for no gain, which forced the offense into predictable passing situations. Virginia was crowding the line of scrimmage dictating that the Canes throw the ball, but unfortunately our guy's didn't rise to the challenge.

I do agree that Miller (a Berry Sanders clone) should be the feature back, but would have Coop as his back-up as he brings an energy that is currently missing.

As for the media...Randy Shannon has been an eyewitness to how the media has treated the Canes and their players over the many years. It's up to the media to prove that the relationship is based on mutual respect, not looking for angles to slam the kids and the program, along with their snarky remarks about most anything Shannon does (injury reporting, texting, etc).

Shannon stopped returning calls to 'some' former players when it was made clear that Shalala looked at the past as a negative, that was only reinforced in her mind after the FIU situation. So, it wasn't Shannon who authored the idea of shutting out former players making them feel unwanted. The "media" should be approaching Shalala and asking her views/policy regarding these former Canes greats and why they are not being celebrated and treated as friends. But, the media will not do this as it's easier to attack Shannon...the guy they want to embrace them.

Finally, Ferman contends "A lot of coaches would be dying to take his (Randy's) place". Okay! Then give us this long list, because this certainly was not the case when Coker was awarded the position and even less so when Randy was named head coach. I'm sorry, but that statement is deep fried manure.

Randy Shannon has to go! This experiment isnt working! Fire shannon and bench Jacory! Lets see what Morris can do...the season is down the tubes so might as well..and as for the players,you guys need to take some freakin pride and man up!!! Stop getting pushed around! Stop being so undisciplined! Stop being so mentally weak! Its football! You have to play nasty and mean,take no prisoners! i've never seen a UM team get soooo manhandled then this one! Its incredibly frustrating watching these games..terrible play calling,terrible quarterback play,penalties all the time,missed tackles,no big plays,no emotion from the players,coaches,sideline,etc..im a die hard can fane and I just want the best for this program and its killing me to see the team play so poorly,week in and week out,year in and year out..i have faith that somehow this can be resolved..I desperately hope so!

I've beeen on a plenty boards & site s all I see is FIRE RANDY /Bench Jacory. The biggest problem is quarterback inconsistencey . Mark Whipple is the assitant head Coach offensive cord. & qb coach no wonder Jacory hasn't developed . If you bench Jacory for Morris it will be the same result . Miami needs a qb coach & the man taht's perfect for the job is Ken Dorsey. He has been groomed for coaching since his days with Cleveland. Kept on the staff to better the skills of Anderson & Brady Quinn . Now he's in the CFL playing 3rd string for the Argonuats. He's helping the coaches develop scheme & putting together his own playbook. Toronto Sun had an article on him 6 days ago titled "QB Dorsey a coach in waiting. He's played under 9 different offensive cord. during his pro career Dorsey would be the perfect fit. He had a hard work ethic since his freshman year at Miami . He could teach that leadership to the qb on the squad . Teach them to read defenses, film studying, technique. Hiring Ken would elevate Jacory game & prep Morris for the transtion from back up to starter. The 2nd coming of Ken Dorsey could mark the 3rd Genesis of the Miami Dynasty.

great article. wow. very solutions oriented. my thoughts exactly... for the most part.

the former players were not a negative. without their contributions, no one would even know UM existed. this is yet another idiotic decree issued by shalala who has no football sense what-so-ever and doesnt understand what the miami hurricanes are all about. i could not believe shannon gave her the gameball. i was dumbfounded. that right there made me believe he's nothing more than her pawn.

andy, no one wanted the job at that time because the cupboard was left empty. off and on-field incidents, no talented players on the roster, no funding being put forth for the program, etc. now there is a huge amount of talent and no incidents. still no funding... but i dont think a prospective coach would be THAT opposed to taking the job now.

I did read where Shannon is finally changtng the practices to the afternoon maybe he does read these post because alot of us have been saying that for awhile.

I totally agree with everything- have you been reading my posts?

Run the rock. and if they stuff you, run again, and at one point or another a TE will be open or a WR. But to give up on the runis ludicrous.

I agree. This program seems to be imploding by the hands of Shalalala and Shannon. The "two shas". Like the sha of iran, they want to run a dictatorship instead of leeting our kids fly around. What I am most afraid is the impact all of this is going to have on the 2011-12 recruiting. It's going to be horrible. It will be like we are on probation. In fact,we are like on probation.

Whipple has a pattern of trying to run up the middle the first few plays, straight dive plays. Then play action. Then run up the middle again, mixed with play action. It's after that that he tries to run outside, off tackle, etc. Aren't the first 20 plays scripted, with a little bit of everything to get a feel for how the defense is playing them. Whipple seems like a very inflexible coach, whose arrogance doesn't allow him to adjust. I wonder if Randy can een say a word to Whipple. Interesting dynamic it seems.

I hope Morris Lights IT UP!!!! IMO, he looked like he knew what the whole objective of the offense and qb's job is. To move the chains, not to mention i actually saw him look for the 2nd and 3rd read and if it wasnt there he ran for positive yardage. instead of getting blasted by def lineman or just throwing it up for grabs praying his wr is going to make a big play.. oh i almost left this out he threw the ball with some velocity giving the wrs a chance when they have seperation to make a move instead of getting blasted or fighting the defender for the ball!!!!

Im still perplexed on why we have not been able to get big time recruits at the lb position. We still cant cover the TE in the passing game and not strong enough to shed blocks and fill wholes. i thought we were lb U.

Part of out problem is Shannon when given the job did not have an offensive philosophy. Why in the hell would he want to run a pro offense but recruit spread offensnse kids..

Bottom line we have a bunch under achieving kids with no football identity to the team!!!!

and with no commitment from the president to make this a big time program i only see things getting worse its really sad considering the football program built the university!!!

It's tough being loyal. I love everything Shannon has brought to the table over his career (Playing Days also). I just cant seem to think he would not want his former teamates and former players talking to the kids. The Jacory situation? Well, I still believe Shannon took him so he could bring in the rest of the NW team. Jacory is a decent QB but is in no way a fit for what Whipple is trying to do. I really think Shannon is trying to appease Shalala. I just cant believe this is Coach Shannons mind set. I am not a homer nor am I a Canespacer. I just love the school and the program and I want the attitude back. You cant be successful in the Future if you don't know and embrace your past. Thick or thin Coach, you have my support.

Bench Jskinny, Fire Randy shannon... Lets play MOrris andd move on. this program needs a QB who is smart and tuff.. not someone who wants to stay in the pocket all the day... Did u see how morris scored on a run TD... that looked good.. Jskinny would be to scared to run like that.. FIRE SHANNON NOw.. lets bring back the dynasty..

canesjunkie,

Thanks for the post on the Sun Sentinel.

Bull Gator, he isn't Curse Piggy. He wants Shannon gone, and he isn't alone.

Mike Leach rumor on the radio this morning. Not sure if I want to go that far, but it would be exciting at least.

J. turnover Harris will be back the next game no matter what. Team has serious issues. Fans need to get used to 8 or 9 wins a year. Then again, you get what you pay for.

Randy Shannon must be terminated regardless of what happens the rest of the season; he is not right for this program.

Also, Whipple has no business playing at this level and his scholarship needs to be given to someone who deserves it. He is a disgrace at quarterback.

Good luck Morris; hoepfully, we have seen the last of Jacory Harris.

For thos of u who keep defending shannon i hope that u are happy with the results.. like i have been saying all season long.. shannon is not the man that will takes us to the promise land... Lets get rid of this coach and get someone who is not stuck up Donna's A... 4 four years of this crap? FIRE RANDY SHANNON!!!!

I gotta say, whatever happens to Shannon happens. However, I still like Whipple's offense. Under Coker, we just ran, ran, ran, ran. No throwing. Drove me nuts. HOWEVER, WHIPPLE, THROW THE DANG BALL TO ASANTE CLEVELAND. U have to get the Tight Ends involved more. That is why our red zone offense is sputters and we settle for field goals. Asante has proven he is reliable and consistent. He didn't get an opportunity to catch one ball against VA. He offers the short catch, which helps the passing game, confuses defenses, and offers a check down for the quarterback. Asante has the physical body of Winslow, the consistency of Olson, and the great route running on Shockey. That is why our offense last year clicked. This year, not so hot. Guys, we would be 8-0 is the D-LINE could stop the run. All 5 championships were obtained by stopping the run. Nobody could run on us. When the offense is down, the D-fense has got to step up. Plain and simple. After the spring game, I was already sold on Morris. That dude can run. If the pocket calapses, that dude can run. He is a hustler. CANE 4 LIFE.

WHIPPLE, if you get this message, THROW THE DANG BALL TO ASANTE CLEVELAND. TIGHT ENDS, TIGHT ENDS, TIGHT ENDS!!!!! THINK TIGHT END

Lets take it easy on this kid. He had a couple of good plays. He is still a freshman that is going to have to learn to read and react at college speed. The 114th ranked d he played against at UVA is not what he will see the rest of this year unless you talk about the Miami D in practice.

Bring back Dennis. He always found a way to win.

Has anybody seen Gordon or Ford catch a pass in traffic this season? I haven't. You can't keep throwing the ball to the TE if they don't catch it. Cleveland should be playing more.

Thats one of my problems with Shannon. He makes decisions based on Philosophy ie, Freshman doesn't play over junior (not meaning Jocory) although the junior may have sucked for 3 years. Randy just isnt good at personnel, developing players or motivating. As an African American I think its time to make a change. I like the Conneticut coach would be a good choice. He runs a pro style offense and gets the best out of mediocre players

Just a sad state of affairs.....I am having a hard time watching these kids this year because they lack the WILL to win...

Please....someone step up on O and D and lead your respective teams!

GO CANES!

Im so tired of people talking about how bad things were in the 80's. To the contrary... things were not bad they were GREAT!. We were winning and either playing for a NC or in the running for one. I'll exchange those good ol days and so-called "thugs" of yesteryear for the sissy "boyscouts" that this team has become. We should change the name from The "U" to The "X" cause we seem to have gotten used to losing and have a damn excuse for losing every week!!! I'm a firm supporter of Shannon but at this point i am for whatever it takes (even if its getting rid of him) to get us back where we SHOULD be. I don't think he's the problem though i think its SHalala...

Im so tired of people talking about how bad things were in the 80's. To the contrary... things were not bad they were GREAT!. We were winning and either playing for a NC or in the running for one. I'll exchange those good ol days and so-called "thugs" of yesteryear for the sissy "boyscouts" that this team has become. We should change the name from The "U" to The "X" cause we seem to have gotten used to losing and have a damn excuse for losing every week!!! I'm a firm supporter of Shannon but at this point i am for whatever it takes (even if its getting rid of him) to get us back where we SHOULD be. I don't think he's the problem though i think its SHalala...

Just curious, I wonder if maybe Shalala repremanded Shannon for the excessive celebrations in the UNC game. The team came out deflated Sat as if something was said or done during the week....

coach slaughter said morris won't be a vocal leader? thats fine cause jacory hasn't said a word for 3 years.

Morris might bring a much needed spark to this team but expecting him to be a "savior" is unrealistic. He provided a spark Saturday but the defense could not get a stop in a crucial situation. He does not catch passes, play on special teams or make tackles. Neither can we expect too much out of him in the leadership department because he is a frosh. So, until some of the other issues are addressed, special teams play, dropped passes, penalties, poor tackling, consistency, leadership, the best that we can hope from this young man is that he help put some points on the board and make the games more entertaining. Until the rest of team steps up on and learns to play 4 quarters of football, week in and week out, the roller coaster ride will continue.

Stephan Morris savior?

Just depressing to be a Miami Hurricane fan right now. It seems that we have no hope. That's the feeling out there. Randy Shannon has lost the benefit of the doubt with the fans, just like Coker did 4 years into his demolition of the program. And just like the Coker years, the Admin kept him a year or two too long, we are reliving history. it's the beginning of the end for Shannon. I've said it all along, I can accept the fact that we lose but I want the coach and the players to hurt as much as we the fans do. If they care, it certainly doesn't show. We've had too many games under Shannon (and Coker) where we show up uninterested. That more than anything else is unacceptable. How can we as fans be asked to support the team when they play half a**ed most of the game(s). I understand as a fan you are supposed to support your team through thick and thin but when your team isn't playing hard we should have the right to stop caring as well. I've always supported this team because except for the Coker days this team played with heart. I see no heart out there now. That's what disgusts me the most. So until this team plays with heart (i'm not talking wins and losses), and do it game in and game out, I have spent my last dollar on this team. I still care and I still will watch and root for them on TV but I won't spend my money to support a heartless team.

No reason to risk further injury to Jacory Harris, let's see more of Stephen Morris.

Atlanta Cane4life: Wow, you're hired.

Some should get a interview with Hocutt and
find out his views on the situation with this team.

people DO NOT spend ur money on this program until there is change.. Let the stadium be empty maybe then donna will realize that this football program is supported by alumnis and fans financial contibutions... NOT HER SORRY A.....she looks like a bulldog mixed with ELF

Thanks atlantacane.....
BTW I live in ATL also

Morris the savior? No is more like morris THE SCAPE GOAT. I am calling it out right now. morris will be the scape goat at the end of the season as to why miami did so poor this season. shannon is going to give all kinds of excuses as to why the season was so bad without the starting QB..and that u can expect a true freshman to win out and how next year the team will win the acc... BLA BLA BLA BLA...FIRE SANNON SAVE THE CANES

This is my one comment... as a die hard canes fan for all my life, i think the ignorant fair weather fans that only complain about how bad J12 is and how bad RS is and how they want him fired need to back off. As long as every Miami fan is calling for him to be fired, he isn't going to be able to enjoy the game and coach the way he wants to. If he starts to see the fans going crazy in the stands and support from the newspapers then he might feel like he has a little freedom to coach the way he wants to. Right now it looks like he is coaching "not to lose" rather than "trying to win". This coaching style is what is running this team in the ground, and it all starts with every canes fan across the nation calling for him to be fired. Whether you like it or not, he is there. Even if they do decide to let him go, they will not fire him midseason. So either way you look at it, he is there. You might as well support him and support the boys out there playing their hearts out each week.

On a side note... i was very impressed with Morris Saturday and look forward to the next 4 years with him under center. Even if he doesn't become the starter next year, he will give J12 some competition, which is always good.

Shannon strikes me as a depressed frustrated man who wants everyone else to feel that way to. Whipple has a gadget offense that he has built for years trying to get to the NFL. Who is going to be the one to tell him it doesn't work, he needs to go back to D2 and stop dragging all these athletes down with him.

I didn't even bother to read the article but are we serious. I don't know what others have been watching but not even Dan Marino and the Mark Brothers could save the Canes season. There are no excuses. This team is what they are. What season is he saving anyways? Going to another crapy bowl game with a four to five loss season? Everything was right infront of this team for the taking and look what happened. One big choke job. The "U" better not be asleep for this game cause Maryland not only has a better overall record than the "U" but a better coverence record too. I'll be there. With about what? 500 other fans?

jra......I won't go to another game until I think someone cares as much as I do. I read where shalala said that losing is OK as long as we are graduating players.....No Thanks!

OK I read it. Nothing changes from my point. But maybe what this team needs is a daily dose of someone ripping them a new one or laying into them. Cause nothing else is working.

Let's just be honest! "CANDY RANDY" was an affirmative action (affirmative action is not necessarily a bad idea) hire. In no way did his resume qualify him for a head coaching position at a National Caliber Div 1 program. His only qualifactions were that he had played and won a ring a the U. He was a very good defensive cord. He had no head coaching experience as a head coach at any college or even high school. He is black and Shalaya wanted to make a political correct hire. Well it failed. Shannon has had 4 years to build this program into a National Championship program and he has failed. He should be fired and Shalaya should be reprmanded by the Trustees for her idea of hiring him. Bring in Mike Leach and start over. Its time to go THUG again!.

Cane fans, not here to kick U when Ur down. Known the feeling all to well the last 3 weeks before our punter finally made a F.G. Also knew the frustration during the Zook years taking 1 step forward, the 2 steps backwards. Didn't know then, but things worked out, and actually think things will for the storied Miami Football progam. No wise crack comments or suggestions. This year, the Florida Program is just about a mirror image of The U 2 years ago with so much inexperienced youth seeing too much playing time. Better luck to U, but not too much ya know. Somehow, I do think over a shorter period of time than U think, I doubt you'll need luck.

btw- As A Gator, I really don't Hate U guys. Much respect actually, but I just Hate to like U and Ur traditional winning ways. But, I do enjoy it whenever a State of Florida based College team takes any of the other 49 states teams out behind the woodshed Sunshine State style.

Finishing strong will help for next year. It's really the only options The Gators, Canes and Seminoles have at this point.


See U in an State Bowl game perhaps? Now that would be interesting huh ?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yt0_mIkWvjw

you know... it'd be one thing if shannon took at least some steps to change the way he prepares this football team... but he DOESNT DO ANYTHING! he just feeds us the same: "we just need to be more consistent" excuse. ok coach, well what are you doing to make that happen!? what changes are you making? because what youre doing is NOT WORKING!

Posted by: Chad

Shannon the support of most fans in the begining, it's just gone now.

He did increase the level of talent, but after the performance of this team, there's not much support for him to continue as head coach.

This isn't a new thing, it's been building up since the middle of last season.

This is my one comment... as a die hard canes fan for all my life, i think the ignorant fair weather fans that only complain about how bad J12 is and how bad RS is and how they want him fired need to back off. As long as every Miami fan is calling for him to be fired, he isn't going to be able to enjoy the game and coach the way he wants to. If he starts to see the fans going crazy in the stands and support from the newspapers then he might feel like he has a little freedom to coach the way he wants to.

Posted by: Chad | November 02, 2010 at 01:41 PM

Not here to rip you, but to you really think by putting on kid gloves to coddle Randy will help ? Acually it's Coach Shannon that treats us fans and press like we are no nothing, nothing to see here children at times. And I think many former players are seeing that as well.

Just don't see how we fans and the press are holding him back.

DAMN the Torpedos, Fans n Press ... FULL STEAM AHEAD !!! Is what I'd like to see out of Coach.

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