Al Golden Isn't UM Football's Real Problem, It's the Board of Trustees
Al Golden isn't UM's real problem, Uncle Luke says.
Photo by Stian Roenning
Since the beginning of the University of Miami's football season, anonymous angry fans have been paying for planes to fly banners over every game demanding that head coach Al Golden be fired. While the Canes were losing against the University of Cincinnati last week, for instance, a banner proclaimed, "I flew 1,124 miles just to say #FireAlGolden."
But Canes Nation is going after the wrong target. The University of Miami Board of Trustees is responsible for allowing the football team to go from national championship contender to
At the end of the day, the trustees have the final say about what happens at the U. They are the ones who didn't fight to save the Orange Bowl so the university could get a more lucrative deal at Sun Life Stadium. The board orchestrated the firing of coach Randy Shannon following a close loss to the University of South Florida in 2010. And the trustees gave the green light four years ago to extend Golden's contract until 2020 because he was allegedly a candidate for the head-coaching job at Penn State, his alma mater.
The trustees are out of touch with diehard Canes fans. They want to cater to the bourgeois Brickell Avenue and Coral Gables crowds and pretend the U is the Yale of the South. Their main concern is getting their names emblazoned on campus buildings, not being able to compete on the football field with today's major programs like the University of Alabama and Ohio State University.
The trustees claim they do not interfere with athletic director Blake James, who backs Golden and will not fire him. Yet only a fool would believe the real shots aren't being called by guys like trustee chairman and Lennar Corporation CEO Stuart A. Miller, trustee vice chairman and Royal Caribbean CEO Richard Fain, and all the other top Miami execs on the board — including a guy you may have heard of named Alex Rodriguez. Here's the full list, including ex-officio and emeriti members:
Stuart A. Miller, Hilarie Bass, Richard D. Fain, Michael I. Abrams, Betty G. Amos, Jose P. Bared, Fred Berens , M. Anthony Burns, Charles E. Cobb, Edward A. Dauer, Carlos M. de la Cruz, Sr., George Feldenkreis, Phillip Frost, Phillip T. George, Thelma V.A. Gibson, Rose Ellen Greene, Arthur H. Hertz, David Kraslow, Arva Parks McCabe, Ronald G. Stone, Patricia W. Toppel, David R. Weaver, G. Ed Williamson II, Thomas D. Wood, Nicholas A. Buoniconti, Steven J. Green, Carlos M. Gutierrez, Lois Pope, Alex E. Rodríguez, Leonard Abess, Hilarie Bass, Jon Batchelor, Doyle N. Beneby, Tracey P. Berkowitz, Joaquin F. Blaya, Marc A. Buoniconti, Alfred R. Camner, Wayne E. Chaplin, Paul J. DiMare, Joseph J. Echevarria, Jr., David L. Epstein, Richard D. Fain, Barbara Hecht Havenick, Allan M. Herbert, Marilyn J. Holifield, Manuel Kadre, Bernard J. Kosar, Susan Lytle Lipton1
Daniela Lorenzo, Jayne Sylvester Malfitano, Robert A. Mann, Stuart A. Miller, William L. Morrison, Judi Prokop Newman, Jorge M. Perez, Michael J. Piechoski1, Aaron S. Podhurst, Steven J. Saiontz, Laurie S. Silvers, H. T. Smith, Jr., Steven Sonberg, E. Roe Stamps, IV, Brenda Yester Baty, Alfred A. Bunge, John E. Calles , Angel Vicente Gallinal, Frank R. Jimenez, Julio Frenk, Bernyce Adler, Adrienne Arsht, Paul L. Cejas, Laura G. Coulter-Jones, Edward W. Easton, Gloria M. Estefan, Enrique C. Falla, Alfonso Fanjul, Peter T. Fay, David I. Fuente, M. Lee Pearce, Fredric G. Reynolds, Eduardo M. Sardiña, Frank P. Scruggs, Robert C. Strauss, Gonzalo F. Valdes-Fauli, Marta S. Weeks-Wulf, Barbara A. Weintraub, Frances L. Wolfson, Charles J. Zwick
So even if the Canes lose for the sixth straight time to Florida State University this weekend, don't expect the trustees to listen to all of those banners demanding Golden's head.
Follow Luke on Twitter: @unclelukereal1.