Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Al Golden Is Probably The Only Innocent Person At Miami And How He Can Get Out Of There

Current Miami Head Football Coach Al Golden is probably hoping he wakes up from this nightmare soon.  When Yahoo Sports revealed their 11-month investigation into several dozens hundreds of potential NCAA violations, Al Golden was probably the only Hurricane that could honestly say that he had no knowledge of what had happened.

Head Coach Al Golden
I'm not going to get into all the dirty details of Yahoo's amazing investigative story and interview with imprisoned Miami Booster, Nevin Shapiro.  Those can be found here.

I'm more interested in what will happen to Miami on the field and on the sideline this year.  Most certainly, before the football season is out, NCAA sanctions will come upon Miami stronger than any actual hurricane.

Does Al Golden really want to stay in the maelstrom? Certainly, if the 12 current players implicated in the scandal are removed from the team, and there are all kinds of scholarship reductions, bowl bans, etc levied on the program, no one would blame Golden for leaving.

This is different than the situation that Lane Kiffin found himself in when he left Tennessee for USC a few years ago.  Everyone at that time knew that USC was under investigation and that sanctions were forthcoming. That was one of the reasons why so many coaching candidates turned down USC before they got to Kiffin.

Golden was apparently never informed of the imminent NCAA investigation.  He was hired by an athletic director, Kirby Hocutt, who is actually now the AD at Texas Tech.  Hocutt left Miami in January, only to take the Texas Tech job a month later.
"If they knew this was percolating, I believe they had a responsibility to tell me and to tell [athletic director] Shawn [Eichorst]," said Golden.
What's even MORE interesting is that sources are saying today that Hocutt was the one who allowed Shapiro increased access into the Miami program.  The timing of his resignation from Miami is interesting, given that, by Yahoo's timeline, they had been talking to Shapiro for over three months at that point.  Perhaps Hocutt knew of the impending disaster?

Currently, none of the players implicated in this scandal have been suspended or taken off the practice field.  That could change quickly in the coming days.  However, what if the initial stages of the investigation spill into the football season, before anyone knows for certain that those 12 players are ineligible? If I were Golden, I'd hold those players out indefinitely, starting as soon as he gets a reliable report that they were indeed involved.

Miami's first game is September 5 against Maryland.

In getting back to Golden and his current situation, how could he get out of Miami?  Do not tell me that he doesn't want to.  He will say the right things, but he has to be seething that he may have just torpedoed his career right when it was getting started by taking the Miami job.

He could outright quit, but he wants to get paid and the timing of this bombshell to the program couldn't come at a worse time.  There simply aren't any coaching vacancies open at this time.  At the very least, he would stay this season,  and then find a way out of his contract.

Poor bastard.

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