Everyone certainly got caught up in the hype didn't they? Miami was a team that some predicted to go 0-4 to start the season when looking at the gauntlet schedule of at FSU, Georgia Tech, at Virginia Tech, and Oklahoma. Yet after two big wins the ridiculous rants came in from all sides.
The worst among them were (not surprisingly) from Canes fans. Check any message board or comments section from a UM related post and there were the inane statements such as:
"The U is back!"
"Jacory for Heisman!"
"We're running the table!"
"The swagger is back!"
"It's just like the early 2000s!"
Delusional Miami fans were not the only ones. Leading the hype machine in the media was ESPN, who after ignoring the U when they had been down the last couple years, began to see good ratings for Miami's Labor day and Thursday night game. Suddenly every show was discussing them, Herbstreit had them in his top 5, and everyone on the gameday set was picking them to beat Virginia Tech in Blacksburg. This of course led to all the idiots watching TWWL to regurgitate that sentiments that Miami was indeed back and Jacory Harris was no doubt impermeable to mortal forces. Virginia Tech ended all the discussions yesterday with a 31-7 win.
Not that some of the praise was without cause, Miami's offense looked good, the defense had a great performance against a Georgia Tech team that scorched them last year, and the team had some confidence. Even I allowed my hopes to get up after the 2-0 start. If we had won yesterday it would have been a 3-0 ACC start with the tiebreaker over the best two teams in the division. Even Hokie prognosticators were predicting Miami to win.
It all came crashing down yesterday though. The skies opened up, Harris fumbled after a blitzer came free, tackles were missed, Matt Bosher (BOSHER!) happened again, passes were dropped, and the muffs did not bounce the Canes way. This should be a good lesson for the Canes. Perhaps they got a little ahead of themselves and thought it was going to be easier to walk into one of the toughest places to play and beat a team that had its pride hurt twice in the early season. Now the Canes can scrap any nonsensical national title talk because as of right now they are not even leading their own division in the ACC. I hope this reality check brings back the focus and urgency we saw in the first two games for this Saturday when Oklahoma comes to town.
Miami is not back, because back for Miami means competing at a national championship level every single game. All the great Miami teams never had a game like this. This week instead of reaping in praise from the media and fans, the Hurricanes should focus solely on how to beat Oklahoma. If they need a reminder bigger than the beating the Hokies put on them, they should bring out the tape of the last meeting they had with Oklahoma in Norman two years ago when they got undressed 51-13.