Category: ACC Published on Tuesday, 22 May 2012 10:31 Written by Bleacher Report Hits: 388
When Al Golden took the reigns in 2011 he knew he would have an uphill climb to get the Miami Hurricanes back to being a national power. In his very first season as head coach he ended the season at 6-6.
Now many people see that as a failure but with everything that went on last year (NCAA allegations and suspensions) it really wasn't all that bad. With his first season behind him, Golden now needs to focus on what matters most-winning.
The Hurricanes haven't won a National Championship since 2001 and a conference championship since 2003 when they were a part of the Big East.
If Golden wants to continue the rich tradition of winning championships he will need to start this year. Here are five ways he can do just that.
In 1979, Howard Schnellenberger was hired as the Miami Hurricanes head coach. He was expected to turn around a dismal program and make them relevant.
Did he ever.
What made Schnellenberger so successful was his ability to recruit in the inner cities of south Florida. While other coaches were scared to enter the projects, he had no problem whatsoever in doing so.
What he found was untapped talent. Highly skilled athletes with tremendous speed and amazing strength. He would make each and every kid believe that they had a chance to do something with their lives, and they bought into him.
He then decided that south Florida wasn't enough so he created a recruiting zone that stretched from Daytona Beach across to Tampa and marked it off as the "State of Miami". He figured if he could recruit every talented player in this zone, he would make Miami champions.
He didn't disappoint, winning the Hurricanes' first NCAA Football Championship in just his fifth season.
Golden has already made is clear that he wants to continue what Schnellenberger did and that is keeping the south Florida kids in Miami. If he is able to do that, the Hurricanes will be more than relevant, they will be National Champions once again.
Over the last several years the Miami Hurricanes have struggled against teams that they would have blown out in the past. Many people believe that other schools are able to recruit better thus making things on a level playing field.
I don't buy into that. There is no reason why Miami can not beat Duke by 30 points. There is no reason why Miami can't beat North Carolina, Virginia, and Boston College by over two touchdowns every time they play.
Last season, for example, they lost to a Virginia team that got beat by Virginia Tech by 38 points. The year before, Miami beats Duke 28-13, while Alabama beats the same Duke team 62-13.
Granted there was a big difference between Alabama and Miami a couple years ago but that doesn't mean Miami should be letter lesser teams get the best of them.
Golden needs to make sure the Hurricanes play every game like its the National Championship. Once they start blowing out these less than stellar teams, the confidence will grow and Miami will be competitors.
The Hurricanes own the longest home win streak in NCAA history winning 58 straight from 1985-1994. Since 2002 they have gone 37-24 at home.
Makes sense to me, the Hurricanes dominated their home and during that stretch they won three of their five rings.
Coach Golden needs to find a way to win every single home game they play. They have something no other college team has, mother nature. Granted there are cold teams that play in cold weather but what team plays in 90 degree, 100% humidity like the Hurricanes do?
Add a few road wins and the opportunity to win the conference is right in front of them.
The Miami Hurricanes joined the ACC in 2004 and have yet to win the conference title. In fact, they haven't even been to the Championship game. A far cry from the nine conference championships they won while in the Big East.
Now Golden has to find a way to at least give his team an opportunity to win the ACC. If he wants to bring Miami back to its glory days, they need to start winning their division.
Once they do that, the National Championship will be at arms length.
Since 1974, no other college football team has won more National Championships than the Miami Hurricanes. During the 1980's, Miami won three alone and was considered the team of the decade.
The 2001 team is considered one of the greatest teams in college football history. So what does Al Golden really need to do to bring back the glory to Miami?
Win a championship, plain and simple.
Once he does that, he will not only cement his legacy of making mediocre teams better, but will be added to the long line of great coaches at one of the greatest college football institutions in history.
One ring is all Golden and the Hurricanes need. Once that happens, they will be a force to be reckoned with for a very long time.
Those recruits from down south who want a chance for the title and great chance to make it to the NFL will begin to stay at home and Miami will be back.
Source: Bleacher Report