With the 2013 Miami Hurricanes season just around the corner now is as good a time as any to take a step back and reflect on what the team stands for. What represents Miami Hurricanes football? What defines the program best? Every program or team has an identity, one of which includes memories or symbols that scream their logo.
What makes a college football fan in Seattle think Miami Hurricanes football? What makes a Miami Hurricanes fan remember things about the team they forgot they knew? Are you, in fact, a Canes fanatic? Here are twelve signs that you bleed orange and green.
You will throw up "The U" at any occasion
The word "University" isn't unique to Miami, but boy did they ever claim it. Often imitated but never replicated, "The U" for better or for worse will be forever be synonymous with the University of Miami. You wouldn't understand, it's a Canes thing.
You have swagger
It's not an attitude, it's a lifestyle. For years Miami was hated on before being a "hater" was a thing, but their shits-given bucket was empty when it came to your feelings about them. You can call it cocky or call it overconfident, but the University of Miami calls it swagger, and they invented it.
Uncle Luke is your hero
Uncle Luke and the University of Miami ruled Miami in the 80's (well, non-cocaine related Miami things that is). Two Live Crew just FIT with Miami Football at the time, and vice versa. You take the good and the bad when it comes to the relationship, but you take them as a package. To this day Luther Campbell remains a diehard Canes fan, while also coaching up the local high school kids and giving his two cents on a variety of subjects as a columnist right here at the Miami New Times.
When you see an FSU fan, the first thing you think is "wide right"
"The snap...it's up...missed it to the right! Miami players are all over the field. They're going to get penalized for it, but "So what?" I'm sure is their attitude."
That was Keith Jackson on the call as No. 2 Miami knocked off No. 1 FSU 17-16. The Hurricanes would go on to win the National Championship, beating Nebraska 22-0 in the Orange Bowl (I was there, they kicked their ass). The following season lightning would strike twice as "Wide Right 2" happened in a 19-16 Miami win. Later in the storied rivalry there would be two more Wide Rights and one Wide Left for good measure. Over two decades later, Canes fans that were not even born at the time throw Wide Right in Seminoles fans faces.
You would entrust your child to Sebastian The Ibis
Not many mascots are recognizable these days, or relevant whatsoever for that matter, but Sebastian The Ibis is not one of those clowns. When you see Sebastian you know what he stands for, then again I guess there isn't much else he COULD stand for. Still going strong decades later with the "pull the beak to opposite sides" move Sebastian The Ibis is still one of the most recognizable symbols in college football. People hand Sebastian their baby to put inside his mouth. I'd say he's beloved.
You are very familiar with NCAA probes
It just IS. Canes fans will tell you they have had a target on their back since the 80's, unrightfully persecuted and scrutinized by the NCAA time and time again. The last saga has yet to see fully unfold as the NCAA takes its pretty ass time deciding just how bad they want to spank their orange and green headed step child. The mere mention of the name Nevin Shapiro raises blood pressure in Miami.
Your hashtag: #CanesFam
They are a rare breed, those Canes fans. While the rest of the sports teams fans in South Florida get the rap as a crappy fan base, University of Miami fans seem to escape such venom. Yes, they have not exactly packed Sun Life stadium since the move, but that's somewhat to be expected in this town when you are losing. Whether it is throwing four fingers in the sky after the third quarter ends, or proclaiming "We got some Canes over here....wooooooooooooosh woooooooooooosh", you always know where a Canes fan is at the game. Chances are even if you're a stranger a Canes Family member will refer to you as "Primo" the entire tailgate party, that's just how they do things.
You know that 2001 was the greatest year in sporting history
The greatest College team of all-time, the 2001 Hurricanes were truly unfair. National Champions, finishing 12-0, these Hurricanes housed everyone but Virginia Tech on their schedule (that game was a 26-24 Canes road win). Clinton Portis, Jeremy Shockey, Frank Gore, Antrel Rolle, Sean Taylor, Kellen Winslow, Bryant McKinnie, Andre freaking Johnson, Jonathan Vilma, William Joseph, Willis McGahee, Ed Reed, D.J. Williams, I mean, the list goes on and on.
In all, more than 40 players that were in that locker room went on to be drafted into the NFL, a staggering number. Six first team All-Americans led the way as this Hurricanes team started off with a 33-7 drubbing of Penn State in front of 110,000 people, and ended with a 37-14 ass stomp of the Huskers in the 2002 Rose Bowl. Along the way they would beat No. 14 Syracuse 59-0 and No. 12 Washington 65-7, as well as FSU on the road by 22 points. You want the peak of Hurricane dominance and swag? 2001 was undeniably IT.
You believe in Al Golden
Out with the old, in with the new, Al Golden is the man Hurricane fans have entrusted their future with. Golden has said all the right things since coming to Coral Gables and has done a nice job creating positivity while keeping heads up during a dark time. Seemingly coming out the other side of the storm cloud in 2013 many Canes fans point to his recruiting and "Golden Way" as signs the program will soon be back. While his sub .500 record as a coach and his unimpressive 13-11 record at Miami are not exactly proof hes "the guy", he is the face of the program for the foreseeable future, and Hurricane fans like it that way.
You would use the smoke every time you entered a room if possible
Lots of teams have their thing, and THIS is Miami's thing. It's a pretty intimidating thing in a big game, even as many times as it's been done. It's as if every player that has ever worn the "U" on their helmet is somewhere inside the fog.
You've considered naming a pet "Howard Schnellenberger"
Before Howard, there was no Hurricanes football. In his short stint as Miami coach (1979-1983) Schnellenberger took the Hurricanes from near program deletion to National Champions, a feat seemingly impossible in this day and age. Schnellenberger is best known for his "fence around Miami" recruiting that focused on keeping elite local prospects in town, rather than leaving for traditional powerhouse programs such as Alabama. Howard would leave for the USFL after the 1983 season, but not before he catapulted the University of Miami into the center of College Football.
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You still grieve for the Orange Bowl
Built for $340,000 in 1937 the Orange Bowl will forever be in the hearts of Hurricanes (and Dolphins) fans. January 26th 2008 the stadium closed it doors, and was demolished on May 14th 2008, much to the dismay of the majority of Canes fans. It may have smelled like pee, but it was OUR PEE. In it's place now sits Marlins Park, a stadium that will in the end cost the city of Miami north of $2 billion dollars after interest, a stadium and decision that most regretted before it was even finished. Five Super Bowls were played in the Orange Bowl, along with literally hundreds of epic Miami Hurricane games.
Between 1985 and 1994 the Hurricanes won 58 straight at the OB. The stadium was known for the sound the steel structure and seating would make as Canes fans cheered on their team. The Orange Bowl was truly one of a kind, and will forever be the house the Hurricanes grew up in.