Home > Sports > Random thoughts from fandom: Recap of the Miami-UNC game

Random thoughts from fandom: Recap of the Miami-UNC game

In 2004, UNC hosted Miami and pulled off a great upset and beat the vaunted Hurricanes at Kenan Stadium. As a season ticket holder for UNC football since 2000, I had tickets to that 2004 game, but I decided not to go. Why? I had a business trip the following day. I missed probably the greatest upset in my alma mater’s history. Dumb call? What do you think?

This Saturday, I made it to Kenan to see another shocker, as UNC jumped to a staggering 27-0 lead, held on to its lead like Whitney Houston holding on to a crackpipe… and ultimately won 33-27. Beyond the obvious memories (the whole winning thing), this Saturday was memorable for a number of reasons. My favorite impressions of a great day in Chapel Hill:

  • On the way into the game, I was walking with my 5-year-old son, who kept looking at the Miami fans wearing green and orange. After a while, he said, “Daddy, their shirts are just UGLY.”
  • About a minute later, a group of Miami fans gets in front of our little group walking into the stadium. A couple of older kids, maybe 12 – each wearing Miami jerseys – starting talking loudly about, “These people [UNC fans] are going to leave here sad. It’s going to be baaad!” The typical smacktalk you’d expect from kids of that age. Future d-bags of America.
  • The father of one of these kids looked over at me, slightly embarrassed and shrugged. I said, loud enough for the kids to hear, “Let’s see what happens. Ask your dad what happened last time you guys played here.” The dad smiled and told his kids the story. Shut those idiots up.
  • A lot has been made about Miami’s new coach, Randy Shannon, and his no-nonsense approach with the oft-troubled UM program. I read an article about the guy in Sports Illustrated, and if there’s ever a man who can succeed, it’s Mr. Shannon. So, when the Miami team took the field before the game and about 20 players knelt in prayer at the corner of the endzone, I felt pretty good about their program.
  • THEN, about 4-5 players immediately got up and started dancing and taunting the home fans. My comment to nobody in particular: “I hope they didn’t pray for humility.”
  • Down 20-0 in the second quarter, the officials were reviewing a UNC pass that was ruled incomplete. The Miami defense, as they waited, started to dance around and get themselves pumped up. They were acting, in essence, like a team that had a right to shake and shimmy on someone else’s home field. Look at the scoreboard! Now, UNC fans aren’t all that tough on the opposition in football. A good chunk of us just don’t get all riled up about it. We’re a basketball school.  But, this little display had us thinking, “Man, I hope we get those sum’bitches.”  So…
  • …on the very next play, the same Miami defense allowed Brandon Tate to score on a 54-yard end-around. Although Ren from Footloose taught us otherwise, dancing really doesn’t solve anything.
  • As the beleaguered Miami D went back to their bench, I looked over at the UNC student section. They were delightedly mocking the Hurricane’s dance from 45 seconds before. Good times… good times.
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