Boston College 24, Miami 17
Al Golden insists he wanted to make a long-term commitment to
Miami. The Hurricanes happily obliged.
Golden is now under contract with the Hurricanes through Feb. 1,
2020, the announcement coming Friday during a 24-17 loss to Boston
Four more years have been tacked onto the deal Golden signed
with Miami this past spring – a move the coach hopes is enough to
end whatever speculation exists about him being potentially wooed
elsewhere anytime soon.
”For the players and recruits, we’ve only said the same thing
now for weeks,” Golden said. ”And again, whether or not anybody
outside wanted to listen to what we were saying, our message never
changed. And now it’s officially not going to change.”
The timing of the announcement was somewhat unusual, the
university releasing the news with about 12 minutes to go in the
Miami is not going to a bowl game because of an ongoing NCAA
investigation into the athletic department and compliance
practices, a probe born after a former booster said he provided 72
Hurricane players and recruits with extra benefits from 2002
Some university officials were aware of at least some of those
claims brought by convicted Ponzi scheme architect Nevin Shapiro
long before Golden was hired last December. (His original contract
with Miami was not completed for several months afterward.) Golden
has said many times that he was unaware of the Shapiro allegations
during the interview process, and when the news broke in a Yahoo
Sports article published in August, he was apparently
So that, combined with statements made by Golden’s longtime
agent in recent weeks, led to suggestions that he could leave Miami
after one season, possibly for Penn State, his alma mater now
embroiled within a scandal of its own – a child sexual abuse mess
that led to the firing of Golden’s mentor, Joe Paterno.
Golden said Friday that if Penn State calls, he’s not
”Right now Penn State has got a great coach. His name is Tom
Bradley,” Golden said, referring to the Nittany Lions’ interim
coach who wants the job on a more permanent basis. ”He’s
passionate. He’s an incredible leader. He’s loyal. He’s been there
forever. The kids are playing for him and I’m happy for Tom. But
I’m excited to be a Miami Hurricane.”
Terms of the deal were not disclosed, including if Golden is
getting a raise or if the terms of the buyout should he want to
break the contract early were changed. As a private institution,
Miami does not have to release contract information.
”I look forward to working side-by-side with Coach Golden for
many years,” athletic director Shawn Eichorst said in a statement
released by the university. ”Al has done a fantastic job of
rebuilding and solidifying the foundation of our football program
while fostering success both on and off of the field. He has been a
first-class representative of our university and I am confident
that with Al leading the way, our future is very bright.”
University president Donna Shalala declined comment, and left
Golden’s postgame news conference about midway through the session.
Miami finished the season with a 6-6 record, which still would have
been good enough to get the Hurricanes a bowl invitation.
”I’m pretty sure that Coach Golden has a plan,” Miami
quarterback Jacory Harris said, ”and that his plan is going to
For now, his plan is to leave – briefly, anyway. Golden said
he’ll be at a coveted recruit’s home at 2 p.m. Sunday; under NCAA
rules, he’s not able to talk about specific recruits until they
sign letters of intent.
On Monday, he’ll be on campus again. Miami’s offseason program
begins that day, Golden making that decision so the team can get a
jump-start on 2012 before the looming semester break.
”I’m happy for Al,” said Boston College coach Frank Spaziani,
who has known Golden since he tried recruiting him nearly 30 years
ago. ”If Al signed a four-year extension, Al’s a big boy, he knows
what’s best for him and his family. Al’s a great person. I love him
dearly – and I wish him the best, except when we’re playing
Some players, such as linebacker Sean Spence, were unaware of
the extension until being asked about it in a postgame news
conference. Others were hardly surprised that it got done,
especially since Golden has said countless times that his wife and
family love living in South Florida.
”I heard the rumblings,” Miami center Tyler Horn said. ”I
never really doubted that he was going anywhere. He told us all the
time in meetings that he loved it here. He wants to rebuild this
place. So I’m not surprised at all. It’s huge for the team. I’m
sure it’s a relief for some guys. It’s a very good thing.”
It ends a wild week of news at Miami.
On Sunday, the university self-imposed a bowl ban for 2011 that
school officials said was ”necessary” in response to the NCAA
probe. Players were informed that afternoon that Friday’s game
against Boston College would end the season, even though the
Hurricanes had enough wins to qualify for a postseason
Golden has said he’s been assured Miami is not self-imposing any
other penalties, including a reduction in scholarships. He wants to
bring in about 30 players before next season.
”I’m excited about the opportunity to move forward, to get in
kids’ homes starting on Sunday and obviously pulling a great
recruiting class,” Golden said. ”I think kids understand what
needs we have. … It represents need and represents
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