But 2014 has a different feeling about it. There are expectations—goals that were not even thought of in recent years. This is the University of Miami, where you either win big or you’ll be sending out your resume.
It’s time for Miami to become the “U” again, and we’ll see if Golden can deliver this year. Let’s take a look at what Golden should be emphasizing this season:
1. Beating Louisville
Miami was embarrassed by the Cards in the 2013 Russell Athletic Bowl by a paralyzing score of 36-9. The Hurricanes couldn’t defend their home-state turf, with Louisville racking up 554 yards to their 174. But star quarterback Teddy Bridgewater won’t be calling out plays for the Cards this time. This is a chance for Golden and the team to redeem themselves and knock off Louisville on its own field—not to mention it’s a huge conference game. If the Canes want to have a breakout season in 2014, this is a must win.
2. Finding a quarterback
It’s imperative that the coaching staff is able to announce a starting quarterback after spring practice. The only problem is that the highly recruited Brad Kaaya won’t be able to join the Hurricanes until the summer (due to his high school’s ruling on enrolling early). Whether it’s senior Ryan Williams (Memphis transfer), redshirt freshman Kevin Olsen (little brother of former Miami great Greg Olsen), or Kaaya, Golden needs to preach consistency to the starter. With the amount of talent at the skill positions, the Hurricanes simply need someone to get the ball to the playmakers. Miami won’t go far in ACC play without a leader taking the snaps.
3. Beating Florida State
Sounds cliché I know, but if the Canes want to be relevant again, it’s time to become big brother to the Noles. Golden has a “perfect” opportunity for an upset—perfect in regards to preparing for Heisman-winning quarterback Jameis Winston. The Hurricanes have a bye week right before the team hosts the Seminoles on Nov. 15 (anticipate a night time start for this one). This will be no small task, but this is something that Golden should be preaching to his players in the 100 degree heat during fall camp. If you want to be the champs, you have to beat the champs first. If Miami is able to pull this off, it really will be full speed ahead from there.