I'm in a good mood today, and it's football's off-season, so I feel like making a toast to college football's good guys. Time and time again I mention that I'm proud of LSU's recent lack of thuggishness (Toliver's incident notwithstanding) and I want to praise other programs and coaches for doing the same. This week, I'm proud to point out a coach that doesn't get enough due for choosing the high road- Miami's Randy Shannon.
Randy Shannon has obliterated the thug from Thug U. In 2006, Miami was involved in the most embarrassing moment ever in college football history- the brawl versus Florida International. Larry Coker was fired because he couldn't control his players. Randy Shannon had a tough job on his hands.
The U's return to prominence has been slower than most Miami fans would like, but Shannon is rebuilding it on a foundation of great character. Miami players are given strict regulations, and the results are stunning. When's the last time you remember a Miami player getting arrested? Maybe many times in the past, but not recently.
Miami is not the greatest city in the world. The area is dense with crime, and much of Miami area's football talent comes from these areas. If the football coach doesn't turn these young men into great people, who will? Remember, only a small portion of the football players go to the NFL even at a program like Miami. Most of them go straight from the football field to the community, and the U owes it to Miami that they make sure they return as great people, not just great athletes.
So a toast to Randy Shannon, one of football's good guys. I'll take him over Urban Meyer any day, and I mean it.