Well, that escalated quickly. A crowd-funded campaign to raise cash to fly a "Fire Al Golden" banner at an upcoming UM game has already reached its $1,000 goal; the banner is tentatively scheduled to fly at the November 15th Florida State game, the GoFundMe movement's founder tells Riptide. Now the group is setting its sights on larger goals, and more exposure.
"I had closed donations, but had numerous requests to open back up so others could donate." Danny Vazquez, the creator of the GoFundMe account, says. " I need to talk to all the donors and interested parties, maybe we'll fly a banner for another game, or maybe do something more comical."
Vazquez now says the banner may include additional messages, "We are thinking a statistic with a hashtag." he says. One of those stats may be the fact that Al Golden is 1-22 versus teams that finish the season with less than five losses, and that win came as the head coach Temple, when his team defeated Navy.
In nine days 33 people have donated $1,100 to the Fire Al Golden GoFundMe page, which has now upped it's goal to $2,000.
Vazquez has heard fellow Canes' fans disgust with his project, but believes it's important disgruntled Hurricanes fans have a voice. "People want us to stay quiet, and that's not right. When you are unhappy you have the right to voice your displeasure."
While Vazquez has taken a beating from the majority of Canes fans who disagree with his antics, he also has garnered a lot of support. "I'm not surprised by the support at all, fans are seeing the statistics and facts we are posting on the Twitter, and they're starting to think more." he says.
The main gripe most Canes fans have with the idea of flying a banner before a sold out Florida State rivalry game, is that many recruits will be in attendance, and it's just a bad look for a program looking to recover from a decade of black clouds and bad looks. Vazquez, however, thinks a plane flying around the stadium is down the list of reasons the program should be embarrassed.
"I believe recruits are more embarrassed when we have back to back blowout losses to Louisville, and lose to unranked VT and Duke," he says. "These are all teams which we have out recruited since the arrival of Al Golden. It shows you the talent is there, but the coaching is not."
Vazquez wants to make it clear, he's a Hurricanes fan, and loves the team, he just leads a group of fans that are unhappy with the direction of the program. "I've had season tickets for over a decade, and attend games. I support our team and the recruits, I just don't support the current coach."
Since Vazquez's movement has gained steam, there has been talk on social media that a group of fans may counter his negative aerial message with their own supportive one, possibly even a plane banner as well. He says have at it, everyone deserves to be heard equally. "They are free to express their support as they see fit. There was a banner flown one or two years ago thanking him for the support, then he tried to run off to Penn State this past year." he says.
When asked if there is anything that can stop him from moving forward with his groups public display of displeasure, Vazquez says, "Nothing is final until it has actually happened, but we want our voices to be heard."