Patience with Al Golden is beginning to wear thin among University of Miami fans and ex-players. Like Keira Knightley-thin. Last weekend's demolition of creampuff Florida A&M did little to calm those frustrations, and now a few fans have decided to let their frustration be known. In a very public way.
Late last week, a GoFundme campaign popped up asking fans to donate money that would be used to fly a "Fire Al Golden" banner over Sun Life Stadium prior to a future game, possibly the November 15 contest with Florida State.
The campaign is being run by Danny Vazquez, who says he loves the Hurricanes and feels Golden has not kept his part of the bargain since taking the helm at Miami.
"The problem a lot of us have is that we continue to come out unprepared, even in games we have ample time to prepare for," he tells Riptide, citing both recent losses to Louisville. "Any time we play a decent team, we seem to be out-coached and make no adjustments... Golden's record against teams with winning records is poor."
According to Vazquez, the season-opening loss to Louisville was the jumping-off point for everyone already fed up with the direction of the program.
"Fans have been skeptical for the past year, but we continued with a wait-and-see approach," he says. "The play-calling and schemes versus Louisville really got ex-UM players and fans heated."
In six days, Vasquez has raised $510 from 20 donors -- halfway to the $1,000 he needs to fly the banner. Here's his pitch:
This page was made after much demand from many University of Miami football fans, season ticket holders and alumni.
The money raised here will be used towards funding a #FireAlGolden advertisement in Miami. UM fans have had enough and 10 years of mediocrity is too much. Our voice is not being heard and we must take action. UM has too much history and tradition to continue down this path. Al Golden tried to bail on UM and leave to Penn State, we have not forgotten. It is one thing to lose, but another thing to get out coached and not be prepared week in and week out.
Vasquez says he wants to give a voice to a growing group of displeased former and current Hurricanes players.
"The goal of flying the banner versus FSU is to get more exposure," he says. "We feel like board members will take note. We have had good recruiting classes since Golden has been here. The talent is there."
Vazquez also runs a @FireAlGolden Twitter account, which he says is meant to highlight facts and statistics that show Golden's failures.
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"This Twitter account is for the fans who are upset and want to be heard. This account is posting statistics and facts," he says. "Everybody can have their own opinion, but the numbers do not lie."
Banner or not, the UM coach likely feels fairly secure in his job. Golden has a contract that runs until 2019, and paying him to go away wouldn't come cheap for the private university.