Former Miami running back and coach Deland McCullough sought to find his biological mother and father. He had been adopted as an infant, and ESPN did a great job of chronicling the story of his search to find his biological family…
I’ll admit that sometimes I don’t pay attention during special teams plays- grabbing a drink during a kickoff, or using the punt to bracket a bathroom run. That’s a risky move, as special teams plays can be some of the most exciting in sports. USC commit Bubba Bolden made that more than clear during a placekick in the East-West game when he hurdled the long-snapper, kicked the ball out of the holder’s hand, and scooped it up to take it all the way for a score. It’s crazy, you have to watch the video…
There’s another angle on the Deadspin story link, too.
No team in college football has ever started a season 0-6 and made it to a bowl. None have ever turned it around to win 6 straight after such a start, but the RedHawks have a chance to do it tonight. The turnaround is just as shocking for a team that hasn’t had a winning record since their last bowl season in 2010. They went 4-8 the two years after that season, before the bottom fell out and they were a winless 0-12 in 2013. Chuck Martin took over after that season, and while definitely showing progress, only managed 5 wins his first two seasons. This season looked bleak, after Gus Ragland went down with an ACL injury before the season, and the team sputtered to 0-6. Ragland made it back for game seven against Kent State, and the RedHawks have not lost since. A win tonight would not only make Miami bowl eligible for the first time since 2010, but it could even give them a share of the division championship with an Ohio loss.
This is not the first historic turnaround for the Miami RedHawks. That 2010 team had one of the best season-to-season turnarounds in College Football history. Never before had a team had double-digit losses in one season, and come back to score double-digit wins the next, which Miami did by winning the GoDaddy.com Bowl that year. Now, Chuck Martin, Gus Ragland, and the Redhawks have a chance to add best single season turnaround to the college football record books.
If you weren’t excited all ready, here’s Interim Head Coach Lance Guidry’s pregame speech prior to the 2011 GoDaddy.com Bowl:
Let’s do this! The game is online on ESPN3 for subscribers.
UPDATE: Victory- Miami is going bowling for the first time in six years, with the greatest in-season turnaround in NCAA history. They had to come from behind, 10 points down in the second half, behind Gus Ragland’s career 380 yd passing day. The fans that braved the cold weather and the holiday break rushed the field after the gun to celebrate. The Hawks just missed out on going to the MAC championship game when Akron failed to convert a fourth down pass in the end zone against Ohio. They’ll still be bowling, and the announcement of which game will come in the next few weeks.
4 teams make the final playoff this year. And while their wins were not as impressive, Florida State has to be in. 13-0. 29 game win streak. You don’t keep the king out until you beat the king.
Next are your one-loss teams. There is enough quality among the one-loss group that we don’t need to look at the 2-loss teams this year. Guess what, only 3 of the teams have 12 wins. The strength of schedule fiction is that a schedule is averaged out, when it is actually more difficult to play and win an additional game. ‘Bama, Ohio State, and Oregon come from power conferences, so the difference in the quality of the wins is not great. They all played in an additional conference championship game, and beat ranked opponents. There is your top for, and they should get to play it out for the championship.
Sorry to TCU. First, you didn’t even win your conference. Second, if a Big 12 team were going to make it in, it would be the team that beat you. And, gee, congrats on whooping Iowa State, for their 10th loss of the season. Baylor has a better case… except that even the playoff committee had them behind the other one loss teams coming in. Beating K-State is a quality win… one win less than the 12 win teams. If the Big 12 let Baylor and TCU play each other (again), then they would be on par with the others. Sorry, but not having a conference championship hurts the conference’s standing. All things being equal, they are not equal.
Bama won the SEC, the toughest conference, convincingly, and are deserving of a spot. Oregon has looked great, and got impressive revenge for their only loss against Arizona. And Ohio State destroyed a very good Wisconsin team, to cap off a dominating season. Right now, TCU is 4th in the rankings, based on some kind of style points, but they did not even win their conference (people keep saying they got a share… they did not by Big 12 rules). Put in the teams with the most wins: FSU, Alabama, Oregon, and Ohio State.
UPDATE: As you know by now, I was right. And the selection committee had the same line of thinking that I did: http://www.dallasnews.com/sports/college-sports/headlines/20141207-committee-reveals-why-it-put-ohio-state-ahead-of-tcu-baylor.ece
It seems Bowlsby and the Big-12 were surprised, and felt they had been punished for not having a championship game. That’s not quite correct, the other conferences were rewarded for having a championship game. It gave each of them an additional quality win against a ranked opponent. If one of them had lost their championship game, and Baylor had made it in, the other conferences might be second guessing their own methods. It didn’t turn out that way this year, and it is better for the football consuming public to reward the extra game winners.
Yahoo’s Dan Wetzel takes a thorough look at the man who took a pay cut to take over the worst team in college football. It’s enough to get me a little excited, if not for this year, for the future. Miami has a great football tradition, and the right coach can take the Redhawks places, though it will likely involve a couple years of rebuilding. We can’t end up as bad as last year, though.