Tag:Al Golden
Posted on: September 7, 2011 12:56 pm
Edited on: September 7, 2011 1:02 pm
 

Miami names Jacory Harris starting QB

Posted by Chip Patterson

Miami head coach Al Golden has named senior Jacory Harris the starting quarterback for the Hurricanes' next game against Ohio State on Sept. 17.

Harris missed the Hurricanes' opener against Maryland while serving a one game suspension for accepted approximately $140 in impermissible benefits from former booster Nevin Shapiro. Sophomore Stephen Morris was named the starter, and completed 19 of 28 passes for 195 with no touchdowns and two interceptions. Following the game, Golden announced that he would re-open the ongoing competition between Morris and Harris for the starting job, one that had lasted since spring practice.

Near the end of fall camp, Golden (along with many UM players) said that the two signal-callers were in a "dead heat." Both quarterbacks received praise for their performance, and their combined scrimmage numbers (individual stats not released by the school) were impressive. But due to the NCAA suspensions, Golden never got a chance to name a starting quarterback from the competition. With Harris in the number one spot on the latest Miami depth chart, it would seem as though the senior would have been the starter against Maryland if he wasn't serving that suspension.

But Harris isn't the only Miami player who will be anxious to get on the field for the first time against Ohio State. Wide receiver Travis Benjamin will be back in his starting spot, and Adwele Ojomo and Marcus Forston should have an immediate impact on a defensive line that looked gassed by the second half against Maryland. All-conference linebacker Sean Spence will be back in the starting lineup, and his impact in the back seven should be felt immediately.

The best thing the Hurricanes have going for them heading into this big-time matchup against the Buckeyes is the extra time to prepare. I imagine that the leadership of these upperclassmen will play a big role in the team's focus on knocking off OSU at home in primetime.
Posted on: September 5, 2011 11:28 pm
Edited on: September 5, 2011 11:40 pm
 

QUICK HITS: Maryland 32, Miami 24

Posted by Chip Patterson

MARYLAND WON. The first game of the ACC season featured the conference's newest coaches as Randy Edsall and Al Golden each made their debut on Monday night. Maryland and Miami braved through rain and injury issues before Terrapins' sophomore quarterback Danny O'Brien connected on a couple of deep passes late in the fourth quarter to set up Nick Ferrara with the game-winning 30-yard field goal with 1:39 remaining. Senior cornerback Cameron Chism iced it with a pick-six to give Maryland the 32-24 win.

WHY MARYLAND WON: The Terrapins offense looked potent in year one under new offensive coordinator Gary Crowton, picking up 499 total yards against the Miami defense. Early in the game they got it done with a fast-paced offense that kept the depleted Hurricanes defensive unit on their heels. But red zone inefficiency resulted in five different drives only producing 12 points (4 field goals and a 23-yard miss by Ferrara).

WHEN MARYLAND WON: Maryland could have put this game away early, but the inability to capitalize in the red zone gave Miami enough of an opportunity to hang around until the bitter end. Trailing 24-23 with less than 4:00 remaining, it was the ACC Rookie of the Year O'Brien who connected with Kevin Dorsey on a 52-yard go route to set up the game winning field goal.

WHAT MARYLAND WON: A hard-fought conference win against one of the ACC's toughest opponents. Many doubters wondered how the Terps would perform with a new coaching staff and several key players missing from 2010's 9-win campaign. Davin Meggett stepped up as the new starting running back and delivered a 92 yards of downhill running while Kevin Dorsey took over Torrey Smith's role as O'Brien's favorite target with 8 catches for 124 yards. The Terps have some issues to address in the red zone, but it was a great start for a team looking to continue the momentum from a year ago.

WHAT MIAMI LOST: Al Golden was pleased with his team's ability to withstand Maryland's fast start and continue to fight through the game. But he will not be pleased with the penalties and costly turnovers that continue to nag this group of Hurricanes. Miami was 119th in the nation in turnovers a year ago, and on Monday two turnovers directly cost the Hurricanes 14 points. Without the pick-six or fumble returned for a touchdown Miami might have escaped with a win.

THAT WAS CRAZY: The uniforms. They are…something. (via @jose3030)

Posted on: September 5, 2011 12:33 pm
Edited on: September 5, 2011 12:39 pm
 

Surveying the Field: Reviewing Week 1

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Yes, it's back.

234 days after Auburn defeated Oregon in Glendale, college football has returned. And did it ever.

At some point during Russell Wilson's return at Wisconsin, Baylor and TCU's shootout, Auburn's furious comeback or Texas A&M's blowout of SMU, one just had to take a deep breath, take in everything that was going on around the country and say, yes, the sport is back.

As Washington beat writer Bob Condotta summed up, "College football spent 9 months trying to drive everyone away and in about 18 hours has brought everyone back."

Three straight days worth of games (and one more tonight) couldn't have come at a better time either after, as Condotta alluded to, a rough offseason. Realignment and infractions were in most writers' computer clipboards just from all that went on. Ohio State, Oregon, USC, Miami, etc., were the schools being talked about in lieu of directional schools being beat up by state schools.

The newest addition to the great CBSSports.com crew, senior columnist Bruce Feldman, broke down The Big Picture from opening weekend and now it's time to dive into the details.

Stat of the week

Admission: I'm a passionate baseball fan. I write, live and breath college football for a living but to me, there's nothing like the intricacies of a baseball game. There's Vin Scully in the booth, phenom call-ups, the DH debate and John Sterling going as over the top as you can get on a home run call. The sport isn't for everyone though, and the biggest reason most point to is the pace of the games.

Turns out, the baseball players have come around to that point too. I've watched a ton of Red Sox-Yankees games over the years and still enjoy every pitch despite them routinely taking around four hours to play.

"It's brutal. I can't stand playing a nine-inning game in four hours. It's not baseball," Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira said. "I don't even know how to describe it. If I was a fan, why would I want to come watch people sitting around and talking back and forth, going to the mound, 2-0 sliders in the dirt? Four-hour games can't be fun for a fan, either?"

On Thursday, the opening day of college football, the Yankees and Red Sox played nine innings in four hours and 21 minutes. 4:21. Not one football game all week took longer than four hours during week one that wasn't extended due to weather. Heck, out of 1,526 games during the 2010 season, the average length of a game was 3:12.

Stats like this make me glad I cover football and am just a fan of baseball. The excessive TV timeouts in the college game might make some angry but do keep things in perspective: at least it's not baseball.

Other stats of note

- SEC teams scored 63 touchdowns, 22 through the air, five on defense and five through returns.

- Florida running back Jeff Demps broke the 2,000 yard rushing mark for his career while his teammate Chris Rainey (left) scored a touchdown receiving, rushing and via a punt return. He was the first Gator to ever score in those three ways in one game.

- Arkansas's Joe Adams managed to return two punt returns for touchdowns against Missouri State.

- The 53 pass attempts from by Oregon's Darron Thomas were the most by a Ducks quarterback since Kellen Clemons on October 9, 2004.

- North Carolina quarterback Bryn Renner had a great debut for the Tar Heels, going 22-23 for a 95.7% completion percentage. That's an ACC record and is the second best mark in NCAA history behind Tennessee's Tee Martin at 95.8%.

- USC's Robert Woods caught a school-record 17 passes and Matt Barkley threw a school-record 34 completions.

- Kellen Moore has 102 career touchdown passes against just 20 interceptions after his game in the Georgia Dome. According to Tony Barnhart, 10 of those interceptions came in his first year.

- UCLA hadn't lost in the state of Texas in 34 years (to Houston) before falling to the Cougars on Saturday. They also hadn't lost to a team from Texas since Houston beat them at the Rose Bowl in 1979. More than the record books though, Rick Neuheisel badly needed a win for this year's record.

- Oregon State true freshman Malcolm Agnew is the nation's leading rusher after a 223 yard performance... but his team still lost to an average FCS team this weekend.

- No surprise to see FIU's T.Y. Hilton turn in another great all-around performance, racking up a nation's-best 283 all-purpose yards against North Texas.

- Amazingly, Oregon-LSU was only the seventh time two ranked Pac-12 and SEC teams met on the field in the last 10 years. The SEC has a 4-3 edge after the Tigers took care of business in Arlington.

The NCAA is following Miami

The NCAA taking a road trip to see Miami tonight…. NCAA.com that is.

The site is wrapping up a five game, five state, five day road trip to kick off the season and is taking a behind the scenes look at several programs along the way. They were in Charlotte, N.C. to check in on student-athlete Stephen Garcia leading South Carolina to a win over ECU. The were soaked after rain storms shortened West Virginia's victory over Marshall. Tonight they'll be in College Park to see Maryland and Miami play.

While the trip is noble, there's a tinge of irony that the NCAA is taking their talents to see the team from South Beach play. Either way, check it out here.

I'm not sure which of the 16 different uniform combinations Maryland is using Monday night either but maybe they can figure out a way to wear the all white ones despite it being a home game. After all, seems like this would be their only chance since you certainly can't wear (all) white after Labor Day.

Don't forget about these guys

- Notre Dame was as sloppy as the field they played on and there's not much else to say beyond that. Yes it was rainy, yes it was the first game of the year but all that shouldn't matter for the Irish - looking to finally live up to expectations and be a top 10 team this year. There's still plenty of time for them to get it together but their lack of fundamentals and now very real quarterback controversy will be something Brian Kelly will have to figure out quickly. On the bright side, Michael Floyd (right) had 12 catches, 154 yards and two touchdowns.

- Auburn is a young team and they're going to take some lumps given their difficult schedule. Let's get that statement out of the way. They can - and should - be better than what everybody is saying they'll be but still, it was a bit shocking to see the Tigers on the brink of a loss at Jordan Hare Stadium to Utah State. It will take some time for this young team to gel and get caught up to the pace of the game. Auburn got a very real wake up call that Cam Newton wasn't taking the snap, now it's time to see how they'll respond.

"We are a long way off from being able to win very many games right now," head coach Gene Chizik said.

Aggies true freshman Chuckie Keeton was the star of the show if you look beyond the box score (21-30, 213 yards) thanks to the tremendous poise he had in his first game ever at the collegiate level. He'll be one to keep an eye on in the future.

- If you were a Michigan fan who managed to stay dry at the Big House, you had to be somewhat encouraged at the progress your defense made. Yes there's nowhere to go but up from last year but Greg Mattison looked like he had the team being much more aggressive. The players still aren't the caliber they once were but there are some bright spots, such as linebacker Brandon Herron.

- It's hard to read too much into Alabama's game against Kent State other than that their defense is nasty (90 total yards allowed) and they have an unfair advantage with Eddie Lacy and Trent Richardson in the backfield. It appears AJ McCarron has the edge at quarterback but both him and Phillip Sims tossed two interceptions. The real test comes when both go into a hostile Happy Valley to take on Penn State. That's when Nick Saban will truly find out which is his "guy."

- Memo to Bob Stoops: walk-on transfer Dominique Whaley needs a scholarship. It's the least Oklahoma's head coach can do after Whaley ran for 131 yards and four touchdowns in the Sooners opener against Tulsa. It's the Sooners bye week, perhaps Stoops can find the cash lying around for a full-ride.

- A so-so debut for Missouri quarterback James Franklin on Saturday. There were positives and negatives for Blaine Gabbert's replacement as he seemed about a half-step behind where he should have been in the passing game, failing to hit open receivers at times. Third down conversions (3 of 13) is one area that has to be concerning but certainly his skills running the ball have to be somewhat exciting to Tigers fans but there will have to be a bit of polishing going on before they take on the big boys like Oklahoma and Texas A&M.

- No surprise to see LSU corner Tyrann Mathieu named as SEC player of the week. He was all over Cowboys Stadium for the Tigers and made one of the biggest plays of the game when he recovered/forced a muff punt and scooped and scored.

More on College Football
Analysis
Dennis Dodd Dennis Dodd
LSU's Tigers sink teeth into Ducks, show they could be in running for No. 1 ranking. Read >>
Brett McMurphy Brett McMurphy
A changed Garcia makes all the difference for Gamecocks. Read >>
Tony Barnhart Tony Barnhart
Boise State's dominant win over Georgia proves they're ready to run the table. Read >>
Related links
Video
Pulling Rank

The AP and coaches polls don't come out until Tuesday with a game being played on Monday. Here's Dennis Dodd's latest power poll top 10 however.

1. Oklahoma, 2. LSU, 3. Boise State, 4. Alabama, 5. Wisconsin, 6. Virginia Tech, 7. Florida State, 8. Stanford, 9. Texas A&M, 10. Nebraska.

Not a big disagreement with that group, but perhaps the Cardinal is a bit undervalued at number eight.

Links for later

- With plenty of time to talk about conference realignment before the games begin again, be sure to check out Dallas Mavericks owner - and Indiana alum - Mark Cuban's thoughts on what Big 12 schools should do. Namely, just say no.

- The video of the week comes out of Lubbock, as Texas Tech's head coach Tommy Tuberville gets the Red Raider fans fired up in this pre-game intro. It didn't work as well as the second half intro, as Tech pulled away 50-10.

- A precision attack from Kellen Moore and his receivers picked apart Georgia's defense. Here's how they did it.
 
- Good column from Sun Sentinel columnist Dave Hyde, who gets Al Golden to open up and share his view of the scandal that has engulfed his program.

- Is The Longhorn Network the sticking point for Texas going to the Pac-16? Yes, but it appears they can get out of it if they want.

Where We'll Be This Week

Looking ahead, Dennis Dodd will be on-hand to see Joe Paterno can try and pull of a massive upset as Alabama travels to Penn State. Tony Barnhart will be seeing if Georgia can bounce back and save Mark Richt's job as the Bulldogs take on South Carolina while Brett McMurphy travels to Ann Arbor for the big night game between Michigan and Notre Dame. Gregg Doyel is going to see one independent take on a possible future independent as BYU travels to play Texas. Finally, myself and Bruce Feldman will carpool to the Coliseum and witness the first ever Pac-12 conference game between Utah and USC.

Across the goal line

Finally, let's not forget how the first day of Oh-thank-goodness-college-football-
is back ended for most of us. I'm really not sure why a game between two commonwealth schools would be played in the state of Tennessee in the first place, but it was. I understand wins in the state are hard to come by, but just how bad was the Kentucky-Western Kentucky game?

The highlight of the night was pretty much Hilltoppers linebacker (and first-team All-Namer) Andrew Jackson telling the nation, "They supposed to be in the SEC?" Of course his team was down at the time but you understood why he chose to make the remarks.

Wildcats' punter Ryan Tydlacka said afterwards, "I'm kind of exhausted." If your punter says he's exhausted after a game, it better be because he ran more than two fake punts, not because he averaged 47 yards on seven punts.

But it was football. The game we love so, so much has returned.

And good, bad, ugly or Kentucky, we'll take it.


Posted on: September 1, 2011 2:16 pm
Edited on: September 1, 2011 2:20 pm
 

Armstong's father calls out Louisville assistant

Posted by Chip Patterson

While current student-athletes involved in the NCAA's investigation into Miami's football program (both current Hurricanes and former/prospective players) have received their punishments or clearance, there are active coaches and administrators named in the Yahoo investigative report continuing their careers away from Coral Gables.

One of the names appearing frequently in the claims of former booster Nevin Shapiro is current Louisvillerecruiting coordinator Clint Hurtt, who was at Miami during many of the violations associated with current Hurricanes. Safety Ray-Ray Armstrong and tight end Dyron Dye received four-game suspensions for an array of benefits they received as recruits, including "five nights of impermissible lodging from institutional staff." Armstrong's father, Albert, expressed his displeasure to the Miami Herald, and wants to know when Hurtt will face his punishment.

"I mean as far as what I'm hearing now, what Shapiro supposedly gave them was less than $100," Armstrong explained to the paper. "That means they received less than what they needed [to get suspended]. What I heard Ray-Ray got punished for was staying with Clint Hurtt. How that supposed to be a violation when these coaches exposed these kids to this stuff?

"I just don't like that all these kids have to suffer and we haven't heard anything about the coaches yet. My kid got a four-game suspension for what? He didn't do anything wrong if he was with the coach who was recruiting him."

While the detailing of what exactly was received by Armstrong, Dye, and defensive end Olivier Vernon (three players identified by the NCAA as receiving benefits as prospective student-athletes) is arguable, Armstrong's does have a point in asking for Hurtt's punishment. The NCAA report did not identify what staff member provided lodging, but the monetary value of that lodging is likely what led to the figures of $788 and $738 for Dye and Armstrong.

If Hurtt was the staff member providing the lodging, than the current Louisville assistant will likely be hearing from the NCAA as this investigation is ongoing and far from completed. The enforcement staff doesn't exactly work rapidly, and the current Hurricanes at least have a definite answer on their status for the upcoming season. But it makes sense that those players sitting out for four games would be frustrated to see the coach who put them in that situation going about his business as if nothing happened.

Posted on: August 31, 2011 11:40 am
Edited on: August 31, 2011 11:41 am
 

Report: Aldarius Johnson uncooperative with NCAA

Posted by Chip Patterson

In a joint release Miami and the NCAA announced the suspensions of eight different players in connection with impermissible benefits received from former booster Nevin Shapiro and university employees. The school also announced the indefinite suspension of senior wide receiver Aldarius Johnson. Miami spokesperson Chris Freet told the Sun-Sentinel onTuesday that Johnson's suspension was not-related to the NCAA investigation, but instead having to do with something he did recently.

But a source close to the NCAA situation told the Sun-Sentinel was "less than forthright" in his interviews with NCAA investigators, a stark contrast to the rest of the Miami players.

Johnson was singled out by Nevin Shapiro in the Yahoo investigative report as someone who received money "at least 10 times," often returning to ask for more from the former booster.

Somewhere between the report from the school and the one from the Sun-Sentinel's source probably lies the truth. Johnson has admitted himself that his success as a freshman (team-high 31 receptions in 2008) made him too comfortable with his position in the Hurricanes' rotation. But things have been different under new had coach Al Golden, and after an ankle injury this spring Johnson found himself absent from the depth chart heading into the summer.

"For whatever reason, he got off track," wide receivers coach George McDonald told the Palm Beach Post earlier this month. "The biggest thing I'm trying to do is get him back on track."

It seems that Johnson and the new Hurricanes coaching staff still aren't on the same page, in many ways. My guess would be that the former freshman standout has likely played his last game in a MIami uniform.
Posted on: August 30, 2011 7:17 pm
 

Morris among new starters after Cane suspensions

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

Simultaneous to the NCAA ruling on the eight Miami players now suspended for the Hurricanes' Monday opener against Maryland, the program also released its first depth chart of the 2011 season. With the suspended players absent from the depth chart, here's a rundown of who will be starting for the 'Canes against the Terps:

Stephen Morris, quarterback. With Jacory Harris unavailable, the 6'2" sophomore unsurprisingly gets the nod over Spencer Whipple. Morris appeared in six games a year ago and started four, with the typical ups-and-downs of freshman quarterbacks; he led the Hurricanes to victories over Maryland and Georgia Tech late in the year but only completed 54 percent of his passes and tossed more interceptions (nine) than touchdown passes (seven).

Allen Hurns, wide receiver. A true sophomore, Hurns saw action in nine games in 2010 -- mostly on special teams -- before suffering an injury. He did not record a reception. But he'll get the start against the Terps anyway after the suspensions of Aldarius Johnson and Travis Benjamin.

Darius Smith, defensive tackle. Potential All-American Marcus Forston is out, so in steps the 6'2", 360-pound JUC transfer tackle from Lackawanna (Pa.) College. (No doubt he'll be a favorite of fans of The Office.) Smith was originally recruited to Temple by head coach Al Golden before failing to qualify academically.

Andrew Smith, defensive end. Smith started seven games as a sophomore but came off the bench as a junior. With both Olivier Vernon and Adewale Ojomo suspended, though, Smith is set to get the call against Maryland. Even as a substitute, Smith tied for fourth on the team with three sacks in 2010.

James Gaines, linebacker. All-ACC 'backer Sean Spence is among those sitting the single game against Maryland, so sophomore Gaines, a native of Canisuius, N.Y., will get the call. Gaines appeared in six games as a true freshman and made one assisted tackle.

Michael Williams, cornerback. The suspended Ray Ray Armstrong was a safety, but Jojo Nicolas's move back to that position to fill that hole opened one up for Williams, a senior who sat out last seaso nafter transferring from Wake Forest. Williams started four games for the Demon Deacons in 2009.

Miami has not named a starter at tight end, the position of the suspended Dyron Dye.

Posted on: August 30, 2011 5:32 pm
Edited on: August 30, 2011 7:21 pm
 

Eight Miami players suspended by NCAA

Posted by Chip Patterson

Miami head coach Al Golden hoped that he would hear from the NCAA "within 48 hours," and he did.

On Tuesday the NCAA ruled that eight members of the current Hurricanes football team must serve suspensions and repay benefits in order to become eligible again after receiving benefits from former booster Nevin Shapiro.

Senior quarterback Jacory Harris, wide receiver Travis Benjamin, defensive tackle Marcus Forston, defensive end Adewale Ojomo, and linebacker Sean Spence must all serve a one game suspension and repay their benefits. Converted tight end Dyron Dye and safety Ray-Ray Armstrong must serve a four game suspension while defensive end Olivier Vernon must miss six games of competition.

The school confirmed that all of the players with one game suspensions will serve them on Sept. 5 when the team opens the 2011 season against Maryland.

The NCAA deemed that three players (Dye, Armstrong, and Vernon) received "substantial benefits" as prospective student athletes from Shapiro and school employees.  These benefits have been deemed by the NCAA as "serious recruiting violations."  According to the official release the NCAA is categorizing these players differently from the other five, who received impermissible benefits while already enrolled at Miami.

"The NCAA has informed the University of Miami of their decisions regarding the reinstatement of eight student-athletes who were declared ineligible by the University last week,” Miami athletics director Shawn Eichorst said in the official release. “The student-athletes involved have acknowledged receiving improper benefits and will now be responsible for restitution and, in some cases, the student-athletes will also serve game suspensions. They understand that their actions demand consequences."

"We appreciate the diligence and understanding of the NCAA staff and its handling of the student-athlete eligibility issues in an expeditious manner. I would also like to thank Coach [Al] Golden and his staff for their professionalism and leadership over the past few weeks."

Miami also announced that four members of the football team have been cleared by the NCAA to play, but must repay amounts of less than $100 in impermissible benefits. Brandon McGee, JoJo Nicholas, Micanor Regis, and Vaughn Telemaque will all be eligible for Monday's opener against Maryland. Senior defensive end Marcus Robinson has been cleared by the NCAA but will not face any penalties or have to repay any benefits.

One interesting development from the school was the indefinite suspension of senior wide receiver Aldarius Johnson. Johnson had slowly fell behind other wide receivers on the depth chart after suffering an injury in spring practice. He was singled out by Shapiro in the Yahoo! report as someone who received money "at least 10 times" but his suspension is officially for "violation of team rules."

The NCAA found that Oliver Vernon received more than $1,200 in benefits primarily from Shapiro during recruitment. This includes meals, transportation, and "entertainment" at nightclubs, among other allegations. Armstrong was found to have received approximately $788 in extra benefits from Shapiro and personnel, while Dye received approximately $738. Those were listed by the NCAA as impermissible lodging from Miami staff during unofficial visits, transportation, meals, and entertainment at a gentlemen's club.

Meals, transportation, entertainment, night club/gentlemens club cover charges appear to be the common benefits for the five players serving a one game suspension. The NCAA estimates Forston received $400 in benefits, Spence's were valued at $275, Ojomo's total was $240, with Andre Benjamin and Jacory Harris rounding out the group at $150 and $140 respectively.


Posted on: August 30, 2011 2:26 pm
 

Golden: Players need NCAA ruling by Thursday

Posted by Chip Patterson

Miami head coach Al Golden once again met with the media on Tuesday with no depth chart to release. The first-year Hurricanes coach is maintaining his stance that he will not release a depth chart to the media until the NCAA has made a ruling on the players the school has declared ineligible.

CBSSports.com's Brian London writes that Golden called reports of eight ineligible players "inaccurate." So far Golden has refrained from commenting on the investigation or any eligibility details, just that the school has ruled players ineligible and he hopes to get a ruling in time for the Hurricanes opener against Maryland on Monday.

Golden also told reporters that if the ineligible players have not been cleared by Thursday, they will not play against the Terrapins. That way the coaching staff can spend the final practices of the week with the personnel that will be on hand Monday night.

The report that included the "eight players" did not list any specific names other than senior quarterback Jacory Harris. A total of 12 current Hurricanes were listed as allegedly receiving benefits from former booster Nevin Shapiro in the Yahoo report. Some current players not on the Hurricanes roster also listed in the report, such as Purdue quarterback Robert Marve, have been cleared to play by the NCAA.
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com