UM quarterback Brad Kaaya said he couldn't keep his eyes open long enough to sit through "the Nevin Shapiro part" of The U Part 2 documentary he watched over the weekend, but he and his teammates said they saw enough of Billy Corben's ESPN 30-for-30 documentary on the school's fifth national championship team to come away feeling inspired by the film.
"For me, it was big motivation," said Kaaya, who on Monday was named to ESPN's Freshman All-America team. "... Guys are walking around saying ‘We need to be Part 3.' "
"It’s good motivation for us," Kaaya continued. "I think it will help recruiting a lot. Look at what guys of the past did – the first one and part 2. It’s good motivation for everyone.”
The Hurricanes, who in a month will be 12 years removed from playing in their last national championship game, resumed practice Tuesday for the Duck Commander Independence Bowl. Unlike last Friday and Saturday when veteran players were off on the side coaching up freshmen, sophomores and scout team members, everyone healthy participated as the team began working in its game plan for South Carolina (6-6).
On the surface one might imagine it's going to be hard for the Hurricanes (6-6) to get amped up for the low profile bowl game especially after three straight disheartening losses to end the regular season. But Kaaya said that won't be the case.
“In some ways [it’s the start of the 2015 season], but at the same time we have to win it for all our last year guys, for all the guys graduating and the guys declaring [early for the draft]," Kaaya said. "We still have to win it for them.”
So what about the U Part 3? “It’s unwritten – to be continued," Kaaya said. "We’ll see.”
Will it have a sixth national championship? “That’s why I came here," Kaaya said. "That’s why I came to Florida, to Miami. I didn’t come to Miami to go to Club LIV or Live or however you say it. I came here to win a championship. They said Florida has the best football.”
A big element in Miami's last run to a national championship was how players like Al Blades, Ed Reed, Ken Dorsey and Joaquin Gonzalez were strong leaders and even ran some practices by themselves.
“What’s big is developing that trust. Their coaches had trust," Kaaya said. "They were running half the practices on their own. So I say it’s big for a lot of the young guys to see that. If you see all the young talent we have and all the guys that are here to win I think we can get back to that. You see guys like Chad [Thomas], me and Joe [Yearby] and even some of the sophomore guys [doing that]."
> Freshman defensive tackle Courtel Jenkins said he saw parts of The U Part 2. "I took away that this is a place where people come and work hard and win championships and have a championship mentality, leave it all on the line and win."
Did it bother him seeing the movie end on a downer with this year's 6-6 Canes?
"We've got to live up to what they expect from us -- our alumni base, player-wise and from our coaches," Jenkins said. "We've got to start living up to that, start winning and producing on the field."
"[The U Part 3] is going to look like what it looked like back in the 80s -- when championships and first round picks came out of here."
> Seniors Denzel Perryman and Clive Walford were honored on Tuesday with third team All-American honors by the Associated Press, the first Hurricanes to be recognized on the team at all since safety Kenny Phillips earned third team honors back in 2007.
Perryman, a finalist for the Butkus Award given annually to the nation's top linebacker, led the team in tackles (102) and tackles for loss. Walford, a finalist for the Mackey Award, led the team with 44 catches for 676 yards and seven touchdowns. Walford is expected to miss the bowl game.
> Freshman offensive lineman Joe Brown was carted off the field Tuesday. Golden didn't know the severity of the injury, but said Brown "rolled his ankle."