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Tale of the Tape: How do you measure 2011 Canes?

How do you measure improvement and regression on a football field?

Is it simply the bottomline? Wins and Losses.

Or, do you delve a little deeper and look at the statistics? And, what do all those numbers tell us? Are they a fair representation? Or, do you look at those numbers and take other factors into account as well? Things like injuries and suspensions, lack of experience with a new coach or a new system. What about the mental side? Attitude. Effort. Resiliency. How do those issues factor in measuring success and failure?

I guess my point is there are a lot of different ways you can look at this Hurricanes season and pick it apart. You can make the argument that this team improved. Or, you can look at it in another light and argue the bottomline results -- six losses -- are the same as last year. Before we get to my thoughts, here is the Tale of The Tape that will allow you to compare the 2011 Canes to the 2010 Canes.

Offense             2011               2010
Points for          318 (26.5)         342 (26.3)
First downs        220                   288
Total yards        377.8                421.3
Rushing yards     145.7               182.5
Rushing TDs       18                    19
Fumbles-lost      17-8                 20-9
Passing yards      232.1               238.8
Comp. pct.         65.5                54.2
Passing TDs         21                   21
INTs thrown        11                   27
Sacks allowed     19-128            16-120
Time of poss.      29:24              28:06
3rd down pct.     43%                 41%
Red-Zone TDs      27-41 (66%)     29-51 (57%)

Defense              2011               2010

Points against     241 (20.1)        269 (20.7)
First downs         236                  219
Total yards         359.9               323.3
Rushing yards      161.9               172.8
Rushing TDs        8                      20
Fumbles-recov.    22-9                20-12
Passing yards       198.0              150.5
Comp. pct.          66.3                49.7
Passing TDs          16                   9
INTs made           6                     16
Sacks made         24-127             37-241
Time of poss.      30:36               31:48
3rd down pct.     41%                  35%
Red-Zone TDs     17-43 (40%)      19-50 (38%)

Special teams     2011               2010
FGs                     11-14              13-17
FGs allowed         15-20              20-25
Onside kicks rec.   0-1                 1-1
Onside kicks all.    1-2                 1-1
Kick returns          21.3                19.7
Kick return def.    18.6                 21.7
Punt returns         11.0                 4.5
Punt return def.   10.9                  8.2
Net punt avg.       37.4                 38.8
Opp. net punt      36.0                  38.3

Misc. stats           2011                2010
Penalties-yards     69-508             107-893
10-game starters    12                  16
- Offense                6                     6
- Defense                6                   10


> The overriding sentiment after Friday night's 24-17 loss from players and coach Al Golden was that despite enduring the same number of losses this season this UM team improved for a variety of reasons.

At the top of the list: these Canes never quit or laid down. 

Golden pointed out after last week's 6-3 win over South Florida how he showed his team a tape of 15 plays he referred to as difference makers between an 11-0 season and 6-5 season. He also pointed out how the team didn't lose by more than eight points in any of its games. When you add up the total margin of defeat (33 points) it is less than the total from a year ago (78 points). Four of the Canes' losses in 2010 were by 12 points or more. 

But is that something to really be proud of? Is this what Canes football has come to: we didn't quit this time; we were competitive from start to finish? It's a step in the right direction obviously, but even Golden knows that isn't enough.

"There's too many variances or oscillations right now in our overall game for me to be pleased with it," Golden said after Friday's loss to a 4-8 Boston College team.

"I think we need to be physically tougher. We need to be mentally tougher. I think our competitiveness has come a long way. Obviously our penalties are down, our turnover ratio has improved. But not to the point where you can win, week in and week out. We knew what was coming in here [in Boston College]. And we're not consistent enough. We need a good offseason program, get re-situated and get a class in here as well."

The second best part about Friday -- obviously other than the fact you now know for sure Golden won't be going anywhere next season -- is that the coach obviously sees the deficiencies himself. He's not lying to himself or to anyone for that matter when it comes to the shortcomings of this team.

There is a lot more tinkering that needs to be done, particularly when it comes to strength and execution up front on the offensive and defensive lines.

For all the love and passion Art Kehoe brings to this program, it was painfully obvious his unit -- which was supposed to be the deepest and most talented on the team -- didn't perform up to expectations. Sure, not having an injured Seantrel Henderson around for most of the season didn't help. And Kehoe did get a lot more out of redshirt freshman Jonathan Feliciano (8 starts) than anybody expected. But UM not only gave up three more sacks than it did a year ago in one fewer game, they also struggled mightily in short yardage situations.

Is that all Kehoe's fault? Not necessarily. Golden, while pleased with the improved conditioning and stamina of his team, has now mentioned it two press conferences in a row that the team isn't strong enough. Maybe that's a reason for strength and conditioning coach Andreu Swasey -- or somebody else on staff to be worried. We don't know. But it says something Golden isn't giving his team any time off and expects them to be in the weight room Monday.

> Offensively, coordinator Jedd Fisch deserves a lot of credit for the improvement of Jacory Harris. Even with his four interception day against BC Friday, UM still finished much improved when it comes to throwing interceptions (11) than it did a year ago (27). But before you go giving Fisch all kinds of praise, realize his offense ran for fewer yards and threw for fewer yards than Mark Whipple's last year and accomplished roughly the same when it came to scoring and third down conversions. If there was a real improvement, it was the red zone where UM scored TDs 66 percent of the time compared to 57 a year ago. The issue really was that the offense just didn't get in the red zone enough was wildly inconsistent UM scored 42 points combined over its final 3 games. They had 49 against Duke. Also know this: UM had the same number of consistent, every game starters on offense (10-plus games) as it did last year (6).

> Defensively, there is little question UM regressed in most areas. They gave up more yards, touchdowns through the air, produced 13 fewer turnovers and sacks than it did in 2010, gave up a whopping 66.3 completion percentage (opponents completed 49.7 percent of their pass in 2010), was worse in third down situations (41% compared to 35% in 2010) and seemed to give up a lot more big plays. But for all the struggles and inconsistency it felt like the unit improved late in the year as freshmen Denzel Perryman and Anthony Chickillo became bigger and bigger contributors. Perryman had 14 tackles Friday, giving him 69 on the season (2nd most behind senior Sean Spence). Chickillo finished the year with 38 tackles (7th most) and tied for the team lead in sacks (5). While both of those freshmen emerged, though, safeties Ray-Ray Armstrong and Vaughn Telemaque failed to meet lofty expectations. Junior cornerback Brandon McGee (38 tackles, 1 INTs) didn't exactly take the next step either.

> If there is one area I felt the team really improved it was special teams. Despite allowing a back-breaking punt return for a touchdown at Florida State, the unit improved in nearly all phases -- even with the loss of punter/kicker Matt Bosher. And it seems the team will be better off now with freshman Phillip Dorsett as it's primary return man moving forward instead of the inconsistent Travis Benjamin

> My bottomline: this football team is still a long way away from being what it once was, but the Canes are better off today under Golden than they ever were under Shannon. The biggest responsibility of a head coach is hiring the right staff to move the program forward and develop the talent you have. Shannon never did that. He switched defensive coordinators three times and offensive coordinators twice. Position coaches came and left.

It's up to Golden now to keep the coaches he feels can move this program forward and recruit players to fit those systems. When Jacory Harris and the No. 1 recruiting class got here in 2008, I was convinced things were going to change at Miami. There seemed to be too much talent for the Canes not to. But unless you have the right coordinators, assistants and systems in place along with the right kind of depth at certain positions you are going to continue to be what this program has been: mediocre. It's up to Golden now to get it right. Hopefully, it won't take the eight years left on his contract to get there. I don't think it will.

But if Friday's loss to BC and the 2011 season is any indication, this team still has a long way to go. They made improvements when it came to committing fewer penalties, throwing fewer interceptions and getting a few unexpected players to shine. Now, it's about weeding out the rest of the garbage and moving forward. It fees like Golden got Step 1 right. Now, it's getting Step 2 down. And the reality is, this is the harder part.


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This may have been the best blog you have written all year. I look forward to the 2012 Canes.

I agree with your blog, Shannon didn't develop talent or have any consistancy with his coaching staff which, has hurt the program. Interested to see what happens under golden the next 2-3 seasons....

We had a lead or were within a touchdown of winning each game in the 4th quarter. Teams that blew us out at our home last year, we we're competitive with on the road. These are the improvements that don't show up in the stats. Miami and Florida State are building teams and culture that will rival that of the SEC.

Lamar Miller had a great season and so did Tommy Streeter. Defensively however we definitely took a step back. We need some more depth on the d-line, some pass rushers, and DB's who can cover. It was hard to watch this team try to play defense this yr

I know this is off topic but I hear pro scouts always say Sean Spence is too small. Canes fans how good do ya'll think Spence will do in the NFL?

Please Cane fan, tell me all about how Duh U was in every game, never gave up, lost 6 games by 32 total points and if it weren't for 8-10 plays U would have gone Undefeated and played LSU for the National Championship...

Please, I'm begging U. I could really Use the comic relief.

oh yeah ... U went 14-22 verses "decent" competition the last 4 years... De Ja vU U all over again ... But Goldie's gotz dis riiieet ?

God U ClUcks are fUnny ... Blind, but fUnny.


I still can't get that picture of the # 40 white boy stiff arming the lil # 3 Predator bobble-head all the way down the sideline ... Bwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhh !!!


U've been measUred !!!

Most important event is AG's extension. Now we will have a stable continuous system to develop our guys. None of this leaving early for the NFL. Pay your dues, mature on your senior year. We have the talent but they keep "getting it" when they get to the NFL. They should get it while they are still at the U.

Congrats Golden.

29-22. See you can only repeat yourself from blog to blog. Must be a fsu or gator grad.

Most important event is AG's extension. Now we will have a stable continuous system to develop our guys. None of this leaving early for the NFL. Pay your dues, mature on your senior year. We have the talent but they keep "getting it" when they get to the NFL. They should get it while they are still at the U.

Congrats Golden.

Posted by: pinoycane | November 26, 2011 at 04:23 PM

He still can be bought out after next year for almost nada ...

That stability U speak of doesn't exist ... U think like an 18 year old recruit that after his Freshman year is in disbelief that his Coach up n left him for a better program, a lot more money and better facilities.

Al has Shalalalala's overies or nads, who knows, in a vice.

@22-19 wow that was a pretty impressive post for a retard didn't just pound on the keyboard like you usually do sure should earn a cookie for that

We get embarrassed by lowly bc and we give a regime from PED state an extension. We are gonna look like feleciano on the last offensive possession!!!!!

Wake me up when we go 8-4 or better 2 years in a row. Until then, we're just like every other hasbeen program with descent talent but not much else. Welcome to our newest member, the University of Florida. Notre Dame will show you around.

Golden has been talking about the deficiencies since day 1: lack of depth at most positions, including QB. He desperately tried to get a Qb in here for this year, that tells you what he thinks. Numerous times he spoke about lack of strength, lack of depth at LB, DB , etc. He knows, but he's not going to knock his players....he's going to play the hand he was dealt and work to get more talent here.

We played like we were so unmotivated against BC. You can thank Donna the political hack Shalala for that. It was totally unnecessary to announce that we would not be participating in a bowl game when she did. Wait until after the season is over Shalala you ignorant stooge! It's mostly your fault that Shapiro was allowed to get so close to the team to begin with. To come out and announce "no bowl" was a grandstanding face saving move designed to take some of the onus off of your own shoulders for putting the athletic department in harms way. All b/c of greed.

Great blog Manny, I enjoy looking at the numbers.

On defense, losing Brandon Harris and DVD both really hurt. I wasn't a big DVD fan but he's better than any CB we have on the team at the moment. McGee has a long way to go. I would say having Vernon the whole year would've helped our sack total. Also, losing Bailey didn't help because he was double-teamed constantly. Ray Ray fell WAY short of expectations this year.

Offensively, there's no question we looked WAY better. We might not have gained as many yards but turnovers are ssoo detrimental to the team and we made a huge improvement on them, penalties as well. We actually have a OC who used players strengths. I think our interior line played well (Linder and Gunn were awesome all year) but we never had consistency from the tackle position. Seantrel was coming off back surgery, B-Wash and Feliciano are both guards, and Jermaine Johnson and Bunche never really showed up. I'm sure that'll be a priority moving forward.

I'm really excited about the team and I believe Golden is taking us in the right direction. Now lets bring in come recruits and get stronger.

Excellent analysis here today!

NMBcane - Spence will be a strong safety in the No Fun Leage. Good tackler with good speed.

A frustrating season. The Canes need a solid QB (Morris should be that), a better O line, a better D line, bigger LBs and some kind of secondary.

I am glad Coach Golden is leading the charge. On to the recruiting trail!

And it will be "Fear The Tie" in the not too distant future. Hey, it IS unique, no?

Yea, lets blame Shalala for players being unmotivated. That sounds smart.

The team is worse than last year and getting worse at an increasing rate. We may never get back to the canes of ole'

I look at the figures objectively and say that statisically 2010 was far superior to 2011.

Golden talks a good game but he was outcoacheded by coaches who have no reputation for being good coaches including the Maryland, Kansas State, Virginia and the Boston college coaches.

I see no reason to give Al an extension at this point. Do you think anyone else really would steal Al away?

Jacory had a nice season but the fact that the coaches let him play in the second half against BC is unbelieveable.

There was no consistency in any of the three phases of the game during the season.

I seriously consider the last two former athletic directors and Sean Eikhorst, current AD, to be totally inept and the position is way out of the proper paygrade for these guys who have limited experience and abilities.

Golden may turn out to be a decent coach but he has yet to prove himmself.


I respect your opinion but I have a few questions:

"he was outcoacheded by coaches who have no reputation for being good coaches including the Maryland, Kansas State, Virginia and the Boston college coaches."

Bill Snyder doesn't have a reputation as being a good coach? You think? I feel like every other coach in college football would disagree.

And lets be honest, it's hard to really count the Maryland game against him. Losing that many starters to a team that already has depth issues is tough. But even he said there's no excuses and it's on him.

"There was no consistency in any of the three phases of the game during the season."

Although a small part, both coverage teams were pretty awesome all year. The one hiccup was FSU. Compared to last year when Bosher was in on nearly every play.

Again, I respect your opinion and you're entitled to it.

Of course they should have been better last year remember. Hank. Bailey, Harris B. Were cornerstones. This year we were younger and into ever game. This is the start of something special.

the coaches did a much better job. They had to deal with that mess with shapiro. They had what were suppose to be top guys supsended. Look the d coordinator didnt have as much talent as the last guy. This d's best cb played safety half the time cause ray ray couldnt stop gettign suspended. The lb depth just wasnt there other then perryman and spence . There dl had dts injured or true freshman. The team needs to get 4 yrs to have the depth at where it needs to go randy never did that.

His 2008 class was a failure. I dont care how they did in hs in college they were mediocre. That speaks to them more then the coaces if after 4 yrs u still suck thats on u mot the coaching. To bad randy never recruited after yr 1 and golden is gonna have to fix that mess.

I love the direction the U is going. Golden will turn the program around I've been a cane fan for a long time and I finally see hope. Golden's problem this year is that most of the players on the team came in with all kinds of talent and expected to win but they dont have the heart or disapline to win. I think thats what Golden will change he will bring in players that might not be the 5 star Diva player but will they'll have the heart and the drive to be the best and work their butts off to be the best. If you look back at past years the great players were'nt the 5stars but the ones with the work ethic to make them great. I can't wait for the future


Thank you for the post. Definitely one of the year's best. I think you should do a post where you examine the prominent seniors and show where they stand in the record books at their respective positions. It may help put their legacy in perspective.

Thanks again

Chile Pls! Shannon does better last yr and gets canned, Golden does worse and gets an extension! I guess administration felt guilty about keeping Golden in the blind about Shapiro. Whatever the case Goldens homeboy D'onofrio is more of the problem and fans & administraion having "Tebow" love for Golden which is Love based more on liking the guy and wanting him to do good than actual substance.

Post mortem on the season was mostly fluff. Lost at home to a 14 1/2 point underdog emphasizes the fact that Golden is a mediocre coach at best. Out coached (everyone remember the fake FG attempt), played a base 4-3 defense against VT, no blitz for a 58% completion qb (Logan). If you want to point to superior coaching, see Hoke at UM. What Golden did at Temple in the MAC is completely irrelevant. Good coaching we convert some of those close losses (KSU, VT, BC). We have 6 real wins (Beating B-CC does not count) so basically 5-6 against FBS competition and Golden is the second coming of JJ?

Not impressed, at all.

Running a fake fg against frank Beamer was stupid. Why didn't we shuffle qb's the last two weeks like we did at flstate? How do you let lowly bc hold the ball for almost 40 minutes?

Dude, Hoke has the Baltimore Ravens D-Co from the last 2 years coaching the D. Really?

your statement weeding out the garbage and preparing for next year is right on;

start with:
L(east west)Miller
R(but i am so good) Armstrong

these two clowns need to be moved to the scout team or Bethune Cookman. No effort no heart and no character

start with:
L(east west)Miller
R(but i am so good) Armstrong

these two clowns need to be moved to the scout team or Bethune Cookman. No effort no heart and no character

Posted by: bdevilandcanes | November 26, 2011 at 08:59 PM

Yea let's get rid of our best offensive player. What a great idea.

For those praising hoke lets give Michigan j12 and we get denard Robinson. How many more wins we get with him. Kstate is a win, Maryland is a win, BC is a win, and who knows about Virginia VT and Florida state. That's how big of a difference a j12 is from a denard. Coach G worked miracles with this team. With all the lost players from last year to all the injuries and distractions 6-6 while not desirable it is a step in the right direction considering a more loaded team from last year only won one more game than this years team did.

Why we gave this used car salesman an extension is beyond me? We lost tto BC in our bowl game at home! No one was knockingg on Al's door. He looks like he is oveer his head.

Jedd Fisch SUCKSSSSSSSSSSS!!! Fire that guy!!! We need a better Offense.. He Sucks!! Wed will never win with him. Whipple was better!!!

Turnovers, turnovers, turnovers! Just think about that National Championship game against Penn State years ago. That's what the Canes have looked like the past few years--actually, not half as good as that. There's just no excuse. SoFla is prime real estate for recruiting.

FYI - Greg Mattison's an OK coach but he's nothing special.

Ray Lewis got Jack del Rio a head coaching job.

Ray Lewis got Marvin Lewis a head coaching job.

Ray Lewis got Mike Nolan a head coaching job.

Ray Lewis got Mike Singletary a head coaching job.

Ray Lewis got Rex Ryan a head coaching job.

And Greg Mattison went back to coach at his alma mater as the highest paid assistant in the country.

If you're Ray Lewis' coach for a couple years you can go do whatever you want.

Every team we played lost payers just like us. Vtech had 4 returning starters on defense and they lost one game. Those are excuses good coaching would have won some of those close losses.

People need to stop being convinced until we see some results.

Great summary Manny . Your talent is wasted at the fishwrap you work for.
AS for Lamar Miller- he was playing to avoid contact the last half of the year. If it was saving himself for the NFL than good riddance . If he was hurt that much in college what do he think will happen if he goes Pro?

First off - Greg mattison is amazing. Whoever says he isn't is kidding himself. The Michigan d, and i know because I'm a fan right behind my canes, was horrendous under Greg Robinson, maybe the worst 'or def one of the worst in the fbs. Now this year they are one of best.
Secondly, the extension is just like the extension Shannon got, it makes no sense and is bad timing.
Third and most important: we need a qb. Stephen Morris is no jacory Harris, and he never will be. He throws way too many interceptions and he is not a winner. Denard Robinson can't throw very well and fumbles and gets Hurt but he is what u need to be 'in' college: a winner. And neither jacory nor Stephen Morris is.

Good Lord Arty ... listen to them .

FSU is just flat-line average, ... Canes n Gators both Suck just above below average .

could use Dorsey's, Ward's and Tebow's prayers for all involved .

4 losses and 2 national championships. Need we say more.lol

I just wanna know what is going on in Florida football. All 3 teams Miami, FSU and UF have significantly under achieved. Is it the coaches the players? Not sure. But not a good past couple of years for Florida football. Is there a possibility that Florida players are so highly regarded because of their past or are just experiencing a rough patch over the past couple of years?

Whoa wait a minute...somebody said Stephen Morris is no Jacory because Morris throws too many INT's. WHAT??? That has got to be the dumbest thing I ever heard.

Conditioning conditioning conditioning. That's the 3 words for TheU. Mental, physical, toughness is a must.

Buchanan Finnie Perryman Chick Porter Paul: the rest of the defense is up for grabs.

Clements Dorsett Hurns Henderson Washington Streeter Bunche Scott: the rest of the offense is up for grabs.

Golden Fish: the rest of the coaches is up for grabs.

Go 2013 Canes

Manny, thanks for the comprehensive posting.

Posted by: Eudocimus01 | November 26, 2011 at 10:08 PM


@NMBcane. While I don't agree with what that other guy was rambling about, Stephen Morris threw more INTs than TDs both last year and this year. Despite the fact that Jacory has thrown many picks, he has always thrown more TDs.

"TheWhat's" posting prompts me to ask (as I moved from Miami 40 years ago,,,)

As regards the Canes, Could it be that S.Florida just has too much going on for players to focus. Distractions, forgetting Nevin Shapiro?
Or is it the "need for speed" stress on Florida high schoolers that ignores fundamentals, weight training, the usual things you'd see up north, Midwest?

Seems like our guys just get pushed around WAY too much...Wisconsin, Notre Dame, now BC.

We DO need to bulk up, and recruit bigger defensive guys. it's amazing what Spence was able to do with the undersized LB body.

I'll be curious to see how Al recruits, what they look like size wise, and IF the sanctions do us in.


29-22. See you can only repeat yourself from blog to blog. Must be a fsu or gator grad.

Posted by: ltcdolphin | November 26, 2011 at 04:24 PM


whats the difference ?

really ? we all do, State of wise

Let's get realistic. they stunk the place up this year- lost to MD that could only beat Towson whoever they are. Lost to BC- a given win in the press- but not on the field- lost to Va- See what they did yesterday- playing close just don't cut it. the schedule was soft,the results were hard to take. Defense really was bad- more arm tackles, Md ran the same bubble screen all night- BC ran off the left side of their line all night long I was really pulling for JH to do etter but his last game this year was just like the game against ND last year when he threw interceptions on 3 consecutive series, including 2 in a row. The fans never showed up- the stadium looked empty to me How is this guy gonna recruit with a lousy record, no fans in the seats and some sort of probation hanging over us. My heart is empty

The one thing that was not mentioned in the article is that there has been a consistent pattern for years of the U playing to the level of the opponent rather than dictating that the level of play will be full throtle forward - ALL THE TIME.

Unless and until Golden can get the U past the play to the level of the opponent attitude, there will be no return to the days of greatness.

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