The Miami Hurricanes' Swagger Is Back

Photo by Christina Mendenhall
Miami Hurricanes fans didn't learn much about the most recent incarnation of their football team in Saturday afternoon's sleepy, business-like 41-13 win over Bethune-Cookman. To be honest, the biggest news to come out of the game was the fact that Hurricanes defensive players get to rock a gold "Turnover Chain" after each take away they are responsible for. Outside of that fun little revelation, beating up on a lesser opponent didn't reveal much about what to expect out of Coral Gables this season.

One thing was obvious on Saturday, though. And that gold turnover chain couldn't have been a more fitting symbol: The Miami Hurricanes and their fans have that swagger back.

No, "The U" isn't back on the field just yet. Anyone who claims the Miami Hurricanes football program is to dominating college football at the level it once was is kidding themselves, but at the very least, it feels as if there is a genuine belief within Mark Richt's squad and its fan base. No matter how long it takes to get back to that elite level, Hurricanes fans finally believe they'll eventually get there.
During the Al Golden years, that wasn't the case. The vibe wasn't like this. The coaches didn't exude confidence, which made those teams decidedly un-Hurricanes like.

Mark Richt has pushed all the right buttons so far. He's brought back old players like Ed Reed and Michael Irvin to remind 18-year-old players that were still in diapers the last time Miami won a championship that the 'U' on their helmet represents more than just a couple ESPN 30 for 30 hits. He's scored top recruiting classes complete with a hint of local stars.

The season open showed again that Richt has once again encouraged Miami Hurricanes football players to be Miami Hurricanes football players, for better or for worse.