Kevin Lewis is a retired NFL linebacker.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


When helping young men become Winners isn’t good enough…..

The “U” was created because of guys like him. The “U” broke on the national scene because of guys like him. The “U” brought talents like Ed Reed, Ray Lewis, Sean Taylor, Willis McGhee, Jeremy Shockey and Clinton Portis because of him. Now the “U” has turned the page on an era, a period, and a time. Randy Shannon has been fired and the effects of this will be shown at The University of Miami the next twenty years. When Randy Shannon took over as head coach of the Hurricanes, they were thought of as a bunch of thugs around college football circles. It was hard to argue that point because players were constantly having off the field issues, not graduating, and even two players were killed. "We have suffered disappointments and tragedy off and on the field," Shalala said in a statement. "We can and will do better for our student-athletes and our community. We need a new start." Randy Shannon gave the Hurricanes that new start. He cleaned up the program and made Miami an academic program to be reckoned with in the highly academically regarded Atlantic Coast Conference. His players graduated and went on to be successful young men. Shannon was a disciplinarian and his players benefitted greatly because it kept them out of trouble off the field problems. "Randy Shannon is Miami," university president Donna Shalala famously said when he was hired. Indeed he was, having grew up in Miami’s inner city amongst the drugs and violence of the Scarface period. Shannon used football as a way to stay out of the drug lifestyle that engulfed most of the people around him and his neighborhood. Through football he was able to get an education and make a living through coaching. Shannon coached at Miami and was a huge reason why Miami was able to lock down what is garnered as the most fertile area of college football recruiting. Miami’s image may have been cleaned but during the process they lost their swagger. Shannon only went 28-22 without any conference or National titles. Now that Randy Shannon has been dismissed; Miami and new coach Al Golden are bailing water in a sinking ship. Miami is ranked 49th in recruiting according to This is blasphemous to a program that is use to being in the top ten in recruiting, or at the worst, top twenty-five. Randy Shannon was able to easily walk into the homes of parents in his old neighborhoods and high schools and immediately gain their trust. Shannon was one of those student athletes, and a success story himself. He also gave ex-Hurricanes a chance to come back and obtain their degrees. Miami has lost the ability to do this through its head coach. This can be seen through their 49th place in recruiting, which spells out the loss of the most decorated recruiting area in college football. This was the key to the “U” winning ways. Howard Schnellenberger(credited with jump starting Miami football program) built Hurricane football by recruiting the area that now belongs to Florida and Florida State. What Randy Shannon measure to the University of Miami shouldn’t have been counted through wins and losses alone, but the weight of that decision will affect them for the next twenty years unless they can get another Shannon look alike back at the head.

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