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New All-Star game invites lots of Canes -- to be coached by Howard Schnellenberger. Other team gets Bobby Bowden.

There's a new All-Star football game in South Florida for college seniors and those expected to enter the upcoming NFL Draft, and so far, three Hurricanes and one former Hurricane have accepted invitations.
The Battle of Florida all-star collegiate football game will be played at 8 p.m. on Jan. 21 at FAU Stadium in Boca Raton. And though the game was announced in September, many people still don't know about it. Nor do many know that retiring FAU coach (and beloved former UM coach) Howard Schnellenberger will coach the South team, while retired FSU coach Bobby Bowden will coach the North team.
Players must have been either born, played high school football or college football in the state of Florida. The game will be televised nationally by Fox College Sports.
UM offensive lineman Joel Figueroa, defensive tackle Micanor Regis, tight end Chase Ford and former Hurricanes receiver Aldarius Johnson will compete in the game for Schnellenberger's South team.
The other senior Canes who were invited and haven't yet responded: receiver Travis Benjamin, quarterback Jacory Harris, linebacker Sean Spence, defensive end Andrew Smith, guard Harland Gunn, center Tyler Horn, defensive back JoJo Nicolas and cornerback Mike Williams.
I had a chance to chat with The Battle of Florida personnel director Jaden McNeely, who believes his game has a chance to thrive right alongside of the other long-time collegiate all-star games -- the Senior Bowl (Jan. 28) and the East-West Shrine Game (also on Jan. 21).
"We don't see ourselves as a competition to the other games,'' McNeely said. "We did this game because we felt like Florida was being underserved. When you look at it, between the Senior Bowl and the East-West Shrine Game, you might end up with 12 to 15 players from the state of Florida in both of those games combined. They’re recruiting the entire nation so they have to have a balance. They typically go after the top guys in every state. Some come, some don't.
"We truly believe there are 100 NFL prospects in the state of Florida. Our approach is, why not take guys who would normally fall in between the cracks and let them play in front of NFL scouts and give them a chance? A lot of these guys don’t have the opportunity once their season is over. Maybe they had an injury or had a bad season, so they lost their opportunity to be seen."
Senior Bowl spokesman Kevin McDermond told me today that their invitations are in the middle of being sent out -- some already have gone out and many more will be sent in the next couple weeks. McDermond said the Senior Bowl has "not invited the Miami guys yet, but I anticipate we certainly will.''
The Senior Bowl is shown on the NFL Network and is played at Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile, Ala.
The East-West Shrine Tame also is televised on the NFL Network and will be played for the first time at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg.
East-West Shrine Game executive director Harold Richardson told me today that the game sends out 65 invitations "to those everybody on the planet knows you'd invite -- the rest go out on a personal basis. We sent out that first batch about two weeks ago, and you really don’t count on getting a great response because guys who still have a bowl game, sometimes their coaches don’t even give them the invitation until after the season is over.''
Richardson does not publicize the invitation list. He said he'll distribute the acceptance list in early January. He said Miami players will be among those invited.
For fans interested in going to the newest game, go to www.TheBattleOfFlorida.com for ticket and other information.
ADDENDUM ON SATURDAY: I know about a couple other guys who go to school in South Florida and are in this game. FAU's Alfred Morris, who went to Pensacola Pine Forest High, wants to play on the North team with guys he knows from high school. FIU quarterback Wesley Carroll has committed to play for the South team. T.Y. Hilton of FIU was invited to play, but I was told by local organizer he got a Senior Bowl invitation and not sure where he's playing.

Here are a few other guys playing in The Battle of Florida: Appalachian State running back Travaris Cadet (who played at Miami Central) and Appalachian State cornerback (he was a quarterback before he switched) DeAndre Presley.
Also playing is Quenton Washington, a corner for USF who went to North Fort Myers High and Louisville wide receiver Josh Bellamy from St. Petersburg.

They did not have the complete list to give me. Hope this helps. And yes, in some cases, the organizer said if a player went to high school in one part of the state but plays ball in the other part, that player can choose his team.

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The NCAA announced that former UM basketball player Will Allen -- known as Willie when he played for the Hurricanes -- "will be honored with the NCAA's Theodore Roosevelt Award, the [NCAA's] highest honor, at the 2012 NCAA Convention in Indianapolis."
Allen already earned a $500,000 genius grant from the MacArthur Foundation, and was named last year by TIME magazine as one of the world's 100 most influential people in the category designated for heroes.
Named after President Teddy Roosevelt, who was instrumental in the formation of the NCAA in 1906, the award is given annually to a person "for whom competitive athletics in college and attention to physical well-being thereafter have been important factors in a distinguished career of national significance and achievement.''
Allen, a 6-7 former center who could leap 44 inches high in his prime and trails only Rick Barry in UM history with 916 career rebounds, played hoops for UM from 1967 to 1971. He is the cofounder and director of Growing Power. The nonprofit organization is an integrated food system that grows, cultivates and delivers fresh fruit and vegetables year-round from 11 small, inner-city farms in Milwaukee, Chicago and Madison, Wis., and feeds about 10,000 underprivileged people annually.
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Kudos to UM for being one of 17 institutions recognized for "an outstanding NCAA Graduation Success Rate of over 90 percent for their football student-athletes in the latest six-year window,'' as announced by the American Football Coaches Association.
Here are the other 16 institutions: Air Force, Army, Boise State, Boston College, Central Florida, Duke, Florida, Iowa, Miami (Ohio), Navy, Northern Illinois, Northwestern, Notre Dame, Penn State, Rice, Stanford.
--SUSAN MILLER DEGNAN

Comments

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Hell YES! Fantastic idea!

I am there!

Perfect example of PT Barnum


Here are the other 16 institutions: Air Force, Army, Boise State, Boston College, Central Florida, Duke, Florida, Iowa, Miami (Ohio), Navy, Northern Illinois, Northwestern, Notre Dame, Penn State, Rice, Stanford.

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who's who of mediocrity and the team with andrew luck.

Canesjunkie,
Good observation.
But, hey, Northern Illinois did win the MAC
championship tonight!
And we are 1 - 1 against these schools this year.
And the Gators are in there? Humbling for the Gator Haters, no?


Feds open SEC probe into Miami Marlins stadium deal

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Looks like we are about to get a stadium.

it's lsu and bama .

U wanna bet ?

who U got ?

even + -

snap ... set ... hold ... kick is up, and ...

?

CHAMPS

I went to the U with Willie. He and Ray Bellamy were the two first African Americans to integrate collegiate sports in the Southeast U.S. Willie was a very impressive player and I am so glad to see his achievements with this award. He is truly a great Cane alum.

Canesjunkie, what's a college's mission. To be an institution of higher learning, and your only observation of good grad rates is mediocre, are you stupid or what. That's a great achievement. The U and the other schools should be congratulated.

Awesome interview w/ Ed Reed - sets the record straight on stealing the BC interception and playing "undisciplined".


http://espn.go.com/nfl/story/_/id/7299321/nfl-baltimore-raven-ed-reed-being-elite-safety

I'm all for all-star games, but the right people should be chosen for all-star games. How Ford and Williams made this game is beyond me. Maybe they needed some extra players, more like bodies, to fill up the roster or something. But it takes away something from what an all-star game truly is.

Those of us who were all-stars like back in the day just don't see the rationale in calling somebody an all-star and letting somebody play who really hasn't done anything.

Ford and Williams will go down as the biggest transfer busts and do-nothings ever at UM.

U gotta figure that with Hilton and Carroll that Cristobal can recruit. I don't know what Shallalla was thinking in not trying to get/ lobby Cristobal from the beginning. It's just odd.

Cool Cat is right
These ain't no all stars
These ain't no little stars or any stars
These are the ones who couldn't make it to the real all star games
No wonder there are a bunch of cane players there
Canesjunkie typical cane Moron
Down playing the graduation rate
Only thing the sorry cane program can be proud of
University of Mediocre at least can graduate its players
Hope Joke-ory took advantage
He won't be balling in the NFL

Posted by: Michael

Instituition of higher learning?

Why won't they let AJ Leggett into UM and give him an education in exchange for his contribution to the football program?

Posted by: 10 years of Mediocrity and counting

So I don't understand...I down play our graduation record because I think we're a middle of the pack team like most on the list?

But, you're saying we're mediocre and I'm agreeing with you.

BTW, your team (UF) accepts anyone who can play and graduates them and you're still mediocre.

Good job cool cat now you have pathetic gator fans agreeing with you.

Your catching up, 10 yrs, last time f-u was even remotely relevant was when timmy was making out with soikes on the sideline.

Cool cat youre an arse

UF, with its top 3 recruiting classes, including those 4 highly rated qbs (all of whom have seen playing time), beat one team with a winning record.....................drum roll

Furman

Maybe the hobbit can be the half time queenie.

Al Golden is going to UCLA, you heard it here first

I don't know what AJ did, but I'm glad he's playing

If you watched the games Friday and tonight, you saw teams that played really hard. Even UCLA did not quit or dog it. If you watched the Wisconsin-Michigan State game, you saw all out motivation and passion. Now, contrast this with the inconsistent Canes of the last several years. It is all about coaching, and Coach Golden gets it. This will take time and the right players. With the talent UM gets, if you add this type of intensity, championships will not be far behind.

And, by the way, it was good to see the Hokies get crushed by Clemson!

So , just when will the U be back ?


damn LSU D-lineman

lot's of job openings ... and i've "no buyout" ... $

Aggie Al ?



it's lsu and bama .

U wanna bet ?

who U got ?

even + -

snap ... set ... hold ... kick is up, and ...

?

CHAMPS ?


.

who U got ?

LSU and Bama will play for the title. Although Ok State crushed Oklahoma, they lost to a 4 TD underdog team in Iowa State. Inexcusable. Bama barely got beat by undefeated LSU. So, get ready for an SEC smackdown game of serious defense. Unlike our inconsistent U as of late, these teams play with full on passion for every down.

Posted by: 6 weeks til Jan. 7 | December 04, 2011 at 12:35 AM

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I got low TV ratings. Nobody wants to watch those teams play again.

.....gator fans...truly pathetic to root for your conference when your team sucks.

What's truly pathetic is the ACC conference.
More pathetic than that is a team that can't compete in such a loser conference.
Pathetic to consistently finish at the bottom half of such a weak conference for about a decade now.
Worse than that is that your team has been cheating for most of those years, bribing potential recruits and current players and still fails to rise from mediocrity.
Clemson and Va Tech, the two best ACC teams will finish at the bottom half of the BCS rankings and will probably lose their bowls.
Your University of Mediocre got lucky with no bowl, they would have played in early December, complained about the rain or cold, and got their arses kicked again.
The ACC, the most mediocre conference and the canes the most mediocre team in a crappy conference.

Well, your last two point are clearly false. Anyone with a third grade reading comprehension knows that. I guess UTrailer grass only read at the fourth grade level.

As for cheating most of those years, what any school has been caught or alleged doing is peanuts compared to what goes in in the SleazEC. That conference wouldn't know ethics unless it was baked in a meth cake.

We are the canes
We play in the mighty ACC
The best conference in the land
We win BCS title year in and out
We are the rulers of the ACC
Play the ship game since we joined
Most ACC titles have we
Nevin who?
Peanuts we say, just look at the SEC
We are choir boys don't you know
NCAA sanctions?
Not for us cause
We are the canes
Al Golden will take care of that
He and his tie
What a pretty tie
Did Maryland lose again?
What bowl will BC play?
DelUsional you say?
We are the canes

We are the gaytrs, we have 50,000 students
We are bigger and older than UM
We have more alumni
We have more money
We have more donations
We have a bigger and our own in campus
And yet,

UM beat us in our first game played head to head in gaineville because f-u was too cheap and petty to take the train down to mayama

UM has beat us more times
UM has more national championsips in football and in the three major sports
UM has more NFL players, more relevant NFL players and more probowlers than us despite us winning 2 ncs in the last 6 yrs
And we only beat one team with a winning record this year despite our highly hyped qbs and recruting classes

Furman. That says it all.

We are still miamis biieee tch

The liberal LATIMES reports that U.C.L.A. is SERIOUSLY pursuing The Golden One. Eh. Negotiations are cuurently in the works COVERTLY between the two interested parties.

And believe it or not Cane rUffians, plush, affluent WESTWOOD has the bloody Benjamins to buy out Golden's contract with Miami and pay him at least 1 million dollars more than what he makes annually. Get outta' here.

Good. Let him effin go. Lots of luck over there beating usc, oregon. Stanford. Lol. At least we have the state of miami for any coach to recruit from. He leaves, his contract is bought out, we get mario criatobal back. There you go.

If he styas, then it tells people. Hes a cane.

Win win situation

We are the canes
We invented the state of miami
It has served us well this past decade
So have all our NFL players and pro bowlers
They have won multiple tittles for us this past decade
Green Bay, what chumps!
Playing Sam Shields as a corner
When he was such a great backup receiver for us
The Saints, more chumps
Throwing the rock to Jimmy
He was seldom used and dropped most balls for us
Golden is the best coach in the Universe
If he leaves we will raid FIU
Then Mario will be the best coach in the world
Not just now, though
Cause we are the canes
Did Maryland lose again?
What bowl did BC end up in?
Gators play in January again?
Not fair
Cause we are the canes

Looks like 10 years forgot to take his lithium this morning.

We are the Gaturd nation, we bought our way into a bowl game cause we necks needs an excuse to drink in a parking lot.

OSU gonna beat us by 40 with a fill in coach, against our 5 star bust and coaching staff that makes more than the Dolphins.

Oh and FYI, only winning team we beat all year was Furman @ 6-5 WOW!!!

Damn I can't wait for this game.

I wonder if the hobbit will make a halftime surprise visit thinking that she'll get a warm welcome....F'in midget!

FIRE SHALALALALALALA NOOOOOOOWWWWW!!!!

Jacori Harris? How can the South stand a chance?

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