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4 posts from October 21, 2013

October 21, 2013

Golden declines comment on impending NCAA sanctions

Hurricane coach Al Golden, who has dealt with the NCAA investigation since his first fall practice, declined to address Tuesday impending announcement after participating in his weekly radio segment Monday night in Coconut Grove.

Al Golden“I’m not going to get into it, guys. I apologize. I haven’t talked to the president or the AD," said Golden, when approached by a throng of reporters outside of Sandbar Grill, site of Hurricane Hotline.

Asked what he said to his players, Golden didn't budge.

“Guys, I’ve been respectful as you can be for 28 months," Golden said. "I don't know anything that you guys don’t know and I haven’t talked to either of my superiors. So in deference to that, I’m not going to comment on anything."

Before NCAA sanctions news broke, Canes were already trying to block out distractions

Before the news broke concerning the announcement of the impending NCAA sanctions, Al Golden's Miami Hurricanes began preparing for their next game against Wake Forest by trying to block out the outside noise of being ranked seventh in the BCS as well as the mega-matchup with No. 2 Florida State a week from Saturday.

"I wouldn't say [there has been] slippage, but it's a challenge," Golden said of blocking out the distractions.

"There is cheese all around them. Don't take the cheese. Don't take the trap. You have a guy here or there that all of a sudden they're seduced by it. They want to hear about it. They want to talk about it. It has nothing to do with the outcome. Doing your job, preparing, asking questions, being engaged, doing your role -- all those little things that's what we need to focus on. That's what we need leadership for."

Golden said he completely ignored the movement up the polls this weekend, went out to dinner with his wife Saturday night and didn't watch any of Florida State's blowout win at Clemson.

"We're going to continue to ignore it," Golden said of the polls and hype surrounding the team. "I need the coaches to do that. I need the players to do that. I need anybody that touches a Miami Hurricane to do that. Families, academic support, strength and conditioning, training room, it doesn't matter. We got to make sure we're all on the same page and keeping the guys focused on what we need to do because the rest of it doesn't matter. The rest of it will take care of itself if we take care of our business and do our job everyday."

That challenge figures to get harder Tuesday. Two hours after the NCAA makes its sanctions public to the media at 10 a.m., Golden and his players are scheduled to meet with reporters again around noon.

RODGERS STILL NOT HEALTHY

Starting safety Kacy Rodgers was the only player injured last week at North Carolina aside from receiver Phillip Dorsett (expected to miss 4-6 weeks with a slight tear of his MCL) to not practice on Monday.

"Kacy is probable right now," Golden said. "We're being careful with him early in the week because he's still in the recovery phase if you will. Once they take him from taking it slow in recovery to the rehabilitation phase we'll know more, which will probably be Wednesday. I'm hopeful for Kacy."

Quarterback Stephen Morris (ankle), running back Duke Johnson (head), safeties Deon Bush (leg), Rayshawn Jenkins (leg), receiver Rashawn Scott (shoulder) and running back Walter Tucker "were all fine [Monday]." Golden said.

> Offensive guard Danny Isidora (foot) went to see a doctor Monday to get cleared to play, Golden said.

JOHNSON BATTLING MIGRAINES

Johnson, who suffers from migraine headaches and has been tested for concussions on the sidelines in previous games, confirmed he was injured last Thursday when he took a knee to the head trying to make a block.

“I came back the next drive and kind of felt a headache coming on," Johnson said. "Because I suffer from headaches I wasn’t trying to [play] after that."

Johnson said he's been working with the training staff to eat the right foods so it doesn't trigger his migraines. Johnson said his mother also battles migraines.

> Offensive coordinator James Coley said Morris' ankle is still tender and his four interceptions last week were a combination of that and receivers not always running routes the way they should have.

"The common thread is he's out there competing and he wants to make a play," Coley said. "Sometimes making the play when something breaks down is do the next best thing and get the ball out of your hands and throw it away and have your coach call another play."

> Defensive coordinator Mark D'Onfrio said the breakdowns in coverage UM had against North Carolina tight end Eric Ebron (199 yards) were the result of too much freelancing. He said members of the secondary in zone coverage didn't have their eyes on the quarterback enough either.

“We were trying a lot of different things, I know it didn’t appear that way,” D’Onofrio said. “We had a lot of different things to try and combat him, but he’s a great player, he made some plays. We had some unforced errors, we hit a couple 10 rows deep over the net. We helped him move up in his ranking. I hope he appreciates it."

BREAKING NEWS: NCAA to announce Miami Hurricanes' sanctions tomorrow

Hurricanes fans, brace yourself.

Your waiting is nearly over.

Tomorrow is the day the world will learn of the University of Miami's punishment in its NCAA case involving convicted felon and former Hurricanes booster Nevin Shapiro.

The NCAA just confirmed the Miami Herald report that on Tuesday it will publicly reveal UM's punishment. Shortly after the written report is released, protocol is that the NCAA will have a teleconference for the media only. 

All UM's sanctions will be listed on the written infractions report, with background on the case and a synopsis of why the punishments have been inflicted -- in other words, everything that the NCAA's Committee on Infractions says UM did wrong. 

The school is informed of its specific penalties on the same day the media/public receives the information, just earlier. But with all the information that has been leaked over the past couple of years in this case, maybe UM knows a bit -- or more than a bit -- of what's coming. 

No one outside of the NCAA and perhaps UM, and those who might get leaked the information, knows what's coming. UM could appeal all or part of its penalties. 

The Canes are expected to get scholarship sanctions, and possibly coaching and recruiting restrictions. Some coaches who have moved on to other programs are expected to get Show Cause penalties, meaning they effectively will be barred from coaching in college for a set amount of years.

Some are wondering if any of the former players who were involved with the scandal will be barred from campus or from attending games, or if any victories or records will be vacated. The Canes could also be hit with financial penalties

   "I mean, the school, they've done so much already to avoid a harsh penalty by punishing themselves, so hopefully [it's] not too bad,'' said Miami Dolphins defensive end Olivier Vernon, one of the former UM players suspended for accepting improper benefits from Shapiro.

   "It's kind of ridiculous in a way, Vernon said of the case taking so long to be decided, but I guess that's how the NCAA operates. You've got to let it take its course.'' 

  One way or the other, the waiting will be over, and UM can get on with its post-sanctions life.

The Hurricanes would have 15 days to submit in writing its intent to appeal any or all of the sanctions. If the Canes get another postseason ban (they already self-imposed bowl games after the 2011 and 2012 seasons, and the chance to play in the 2012 ACC title game), they could appeal it and pretty much ensure themselves the right to play in this postseason, as the appeals process takes several months.

Are you nervous? Relieved? 

Your thoughts on what will come tomorrow? 

Best realistic scenario? Worst scenario?

SUSAN MILLER DEGNAN

Canes-Seminoles an 8 p.m. kickoff on ABC

The game times for the week of Nov. 2 have been announced and your 7th-ranked Miami Hurricanes are headed for a primetime showdown with the No. 2 BCS-ranked Florida State Seminoles.

The game, scheduled for an 8 p.m. kickoff, will be televised on ABC. That means Tallahassee is the likely destination for ESPN's Gameday Crew. 

More later.