Friday, September 14, 2007

Miami Hurricanes learn discipline and focus from Randy Shannon

By David Kaye

Coral Gables -
Head coach Randy Shannon has been on the job for less than a year, but in his brief tenure, he has installed accountability, discipline, toughness and credibility in his players.

Gone are the glory days under Larry Coker who lead the Hurricanes to an astounding 60-15 record in six seasons, but in are first rate student athletes who treat everybody with respect and are admirable on and off the field.

‘’If you can’t be discipline on the field you can’t be discipline off the field,’’ senior wide receiver Darnell Jenkins told CFI after practice. ‘’He (Randy Shannon) has made players focus more on what’s right to do than what’s wrong. It says in our minds to stay positive and do what you have to do and at the total outcome at the end you’ll be successful.”

Shannon has his players entering the 2007 season with a totally revamped mindset about how to play the game of football properly. Following an embarrassing brawl on October 14th of last season against Florida International where 13 Miami players were suspended, the program has suffered through extensive bashing by the media, fans and even former alumni.

The prospect of being one of the premier Division I programs in all of college football was quickly eliminated and what entered was this negative persona of being a thuggish and inadequate school that could not control their players. The environment in Coral Gables was not conducive to winning and a new regime needed to be implemented.

Fortunately, athletic director Paul Dee had to look no further than defensive coordinator Randy Shannon (although they did) who had guided the Hurricanes defense to five top ten finishes in six years. He may not come well groomed as an experienced coach from another university might have, but he’s a Miami guy who has been with the program since 1985 (stepping out here and there) and has played an integral part in three of the school’s five national championship teams, both as a player and as a coach.

Shannon believes that all disciplinary issues are behind them as they are set to take on FIU this week, no extra security is necessary according to the coach.

Randy Shannon is the perfect man to guide the Hurricanes into the future and set a precedent that behaving exemplary off the field will lend to a winning formula on the field.