Canesfan Satisfaction Meter: 4.6%; plus how our teams' rank in ESPN Ultimate Standings, Dolphins/NFL Week 4 picks, UM falls at Cincy, why ticket brokers hate Fins, D. Wade, doubting 'Marlins Man,' Heat-expectations verdict & more
GREG COTE'S RANDOM EVIDENCE BLOG: MIAMI. SPORTS. AND BEYOND.
1) Ii is SATURDAY, OCTOBER 3: Like to see Howard Schnellenberger in the College Football Hall of Fame? There's a new petition at change.org. 2) Marlins 2B Dee Gordon named a finalist for MLB Players Choice Award for Man of the Year, encompassing off-field good works. 3) In The Previous Blogpost (ITPB): Heat-expectations poll, 'Marlins Man' to Golden's rescue, Philbin firing odds, SOPY standings, NFL Pix 'n Lobos Fantasy update, Pope Francis' new single & more. 4) Follow us on Twitter @gregcote. Also on Facebook, Instagram, Vine and Periscope.
"Dolphin Brent Grimes says the arrest of his wife is not a distraction. The national group, People Who Believe Him, is meeting tonight at the Waffle House. Corner booth." --Greg Cote
Find our UM-Cincy in-game blog and postgame thoughts immediately under the latest CSM poll.
CANESFAN SATISFACTION METER: G4: 4.6%: Results are certified in the latest Canesfan Satisfaction Meter postgame poll, and they show 4.6 percent overall satisfaction (a combination of "very" and "somewhat" satisfied votes) in the wake of Thursday's 34-23 loss at Cincinnati putting UM's season record at 3-1. The CSM, in its seventh season, is your invitation after every Hurricanes game to vote on your overall satisfaction with the team and season in a continuing weekly gauge of how UM football fans are feeling. Criteria for voting is your own, but I suggest you consider the most recent game's performance and caliber of opponent, this season as a whole, program's direction and your overall degree of optimism -- all in the context of reasonable expectations. Results are certified official the morning after one full day of voting. In this case that was around 8:30 a.m. today/Saturday.
2015 CSM Results
Game 1: 62.3% (following 45-0 victory vs. Bethune-Cookman)
Game 2: 34.2% (following 44-20 victory at Florida Atlantic)
Game 3: 35.9% (following 36-33 OT victory vs. Nebraska)
Game 4: 4.6% (following 34-23 loss at Cincinnati)
Next poll: Oct. 10 (following game at Florida State)
Interpreting the latest vote: Expected a huge fall, and saw one. A plunge this steep seems, for me, a bit harsh for a team 3-1, but I get it. Losing at Cincy was a bad defeat, one that underlined all the worst feelings about The U being stuck in mediocrity and doubts about Al Golden being the answer.
G4: CINCINNATI 34, HURRICANES 23: Final: Where to start in counting the ways UM lost? Settling for too many field goals and missing two of them. Seeing a 50-yard punt return TD negated by a penalty. Being stopped on downs late at the Cincy 5. Three points in the second half. Miami didn't score enough, or stop enough, and so the Canes are now 3-1 heading into FSU Week. Cincinnati isn't bad, but this definitely is a game UM needed to win -- and a result that will feed the flames under coach Al Golden. ..... Fourth Q: Killer. UM stopped on 4th down at Cincy 5, wasting a 45-yard pass to Herb Waters. ... Miami in trouble now, down 34-23 with 6:54 left after getting burned for 52-yard Cincy pass to set up short TD. ... Miami settles for 26-yard FG to pull within 27-23 after failing on 3rd-and-6. Weird call, to run, and to run inside. ..... Third Q: Scoreless third playing into Cincy's hands, not The U's. ... Late third, another missed chance. ... Man, this hurts. Penalties hurting UM, especially this one: Hold negates 50-yard Corn Elder punt-return TD, then UM misses FG. ..... Half: At 27-20, Cincy, Miami fans who think dominance is a birthright as well as the anti-Al Golden crowd will be fuming. The more reasoned among the fan base will take a deep breath and understand that 4-0 is still very much in play. I'd not worry much at this point. Not yet. But that's just me. ..... Second Q: Cincy adds short FG just before halftime for 27-20 lead at the break. UM pass defense better improve or Canes could be headed for an upset loss. ... Canes miss 51-yard FG, fail to take advantage of short Cincy punt and great field position. That in turn gives Cincy good field position and it scores for 24-20 lead. ... UM back in charge 20-17 as 40-yard pass sets up short Joe Yearby TD run. ... Cincy 17-13 on 51-yard FG. ... Getting safety Deon Bush back for second half will help. But enough? ..... First Q: Big INT by Miami defense. Told you (in the preview below) that Cincy mistakes might help UM. Takeaway is parlayed into short Mark Walton TD run to make it 14-13. ... Canes within 14-6 on 47-yard FG. ... Another "Fire Al Golden" banner above Nippert Stadium. Relentless. ... Wow. UM gives up 69-yard punt return to set up quick TD pass and sudden 14-3 hole. ... Canes defense dominated in opening Cincy drive capped by 29-yard run, and Miami trails for first time all season at 7-3. ... UM 3-0 on 41-yard FG to end opening drive. ... Hate those Canes uniforms. Gawd. ... Fun Nissan "Heisman House" commercial featuring Vinny Testaverde. ..... Original post: Miami's last game before the Oct. 10 huge one at No. 11 Florida State, a duel that could find the Canes ranked to make it a Top 25 matchup if Miami avoids stumbling here. And the biggest danger of that? UM players looking ahead to FSU, of course! This game will be about focus on the task at hand as 3-0 Miami visits the 2-2 Cincy Bearcats in a 7:30 p.m. kickoff on ESPN. UM is a modest 6-point favorite -- neither oddsmakers nor the polls are quite yet sold on Miami -- but I think the Hurricanes will cover that in a high-scoring game. Cincy has 10 turnovers and UM has nine takeaways, a combination that suggests the B-Cats may have a hand in their own defeat. And that's accentuated by the fact redshirt-freshman QB Hayden Moore will make his first start for Cincy. He threw for a ridiculous 557 yards in three quarters off the bench last week, though, so the Canes need to get in his pocket and make his feel his inexperience. Meanwhile Cincy's defense has allowed 87 points in its two losses. Brad Kaaya, Joe Yearby and Rashawn Scott, et al, could have a field day. My pick: Hurricanes, 48-24.
College Week 5 state FBS games (in chronology; games Saturday unless noted):
Memphis 24, South Florida 17: Credible every last night vs. unbeaten foe, but Bulls fall to 1-3.
Tulane 45, UCF 31: It's official, then. The 0-4 Knights really suck.
Massachusetts 24, FIU 14: Disappointing road show by Panthers, now 2-3.
No. 11 Florida State (3-0) 24, Wake Forest 16: Perfunctory Noles road win in advance of UM visit.
No. 25 Florida 38, No. 3 Ole Miss 10: Wow. Enormously impressive Swamp upset by Gators should have UF rocketing up the polls.
Off this week: FAU (1-3).
DOLPHINS, MARLINS LAG IN ESPN'S ANNUAL 'ULTIMATE STANDINGS': There is where ESPN The Mag ranks all 122 teams in America's Big Four sports. No. 1 overall are the San Antonio Spurs and other sport leaders are Tampa Bay Lightning 3rd, Seattle Seahawks 5th and Pittsbrgh Pirates 8th. Rankings are based on eight criteria including owner, coach, players, fan relations and affordability. Locally, the Heat slip in at a solid 21st overall and the Panthers a respectable 48th. The opthers? Not so good. The Dolphins are 92nd and the Marlins 106th. Dead last? Sorry, Toronto Maple Leafs.
UPSET BIRD DAY/NFL WEEK 4: Bounced back last week to go 13-3 straight-up and 10-6 against the spread, but our Week 4 got off to an unlucky start last night. We have an exact-score 23-20 bull's-eye if Pittsburgh attempts and makes that 50-yard field goal in overtime. Instead, boneheadedly, Mike Tomlin goes for it, fails, and Ravens win. Oh well. Click on Week 4 Gems for all our latest NFL picks and full prediction capsules. Highlights: Dolphins fail to overcome tough Jets defense in London (sorry, folks); return of Drew Brees gets Saints off the schneid; and Giants win at Buffalo in our Upset Bird Special ("Aawwk!"). Also click on Fresh Attack On Redskins Name for my accompanying Friday Page NFL notes column, which leads with the Philadelphia Eagles now refusing to acknowledge their division rival's controversial nickname.
WHY TICKET BROKERS HATE THE MIAMI DOLPHINS: An interesting sports-business article today in the Wall Street Journal flies under the very headline I've used have here, with the subhed, "In bid to control the resale market, team owner Stephen Ross is investing in one brokerage -- while cutting off others." Anyone who's delved into the secondary ticket market for Dolphins seats might find it worth a read. Click here to do so.
DWYANE WADE: BASKETBALL STAR, FASHIONABLE MAN: Heat star Dwyane Wade graces the cover of the new Ocean Drive magazine, accompanied by a story (click HERE to read) in which he talks about his oft-criticized fashion sense and also about his life, wife and kids. There's even a little bit of basketball talk, although Wade's style and fashion are clearly the focal point.
Poll result: Much optimism for improved Heat: We asked you to set the bar on Heat expectations and 37.2 percent predicted high seed/deep playoff run and another 24.0% predicted Eastern finals or better. Less optimistic were the 25.8% forecasting no playoffs or first-round ouster, and 13.0% seeing a low seed and maybe first-round advance.
CONTROVERSY! 'MARLINS MAN' ALLEGIANCE TO GOLDEN QUESTIONED!: In the previous blogpost we had an item on 'Marlins Man' Laurence Leavy's plan to fly a pro-Al Golden banner over the next UM home game Oct. 17 vs. Virginia Tech. But several readers have since questioned his motives, suggesting he's feigning support so that Golden will stay and the Canes' mediocrity might continue because [dramatic pause] ... LEAVY IS A 'NOLES FAN! That's right. The man purporting to be a big Golden supporter is pictured here in an FSU hat. He is a major FSU financial booster; click here for a brief video of him being honored for his financial contributions before a game in Tallahassee. This takes the UM football Air Wars to a whole new and potentially sinister level. Are the anti- and pro-Golden banners what they seem?
Revisit the blog a lot because we constantly update and add to our latest posts...