Olsen Era Ending Before It Even Started?

Despite his status as a redshirt freshman, it’s getting safe to say that the Kevin Olsen era at the University of Miami is on track to end before it even begins.

That’s not to say redemption stories aren’t possible. Lots of time left for Olsen to turn it around, but in the small window between signing with “The U” and entering fall camp year two, it’s been bit of a circus.

WQAM’s Adam Kuperstein is reporting that Olsen has failed his second drug test in eight month and will be suspended for at least the season opener at Louisville. Olsen missed last December’s bowl game against the Cardinals, as well.

Where this is a frustrating story regarding any talented athlete with a sky’s-the-limit road lying ahead, Olsen’s situation is even worse, when considering his pedigree, as well as the wide open situation at Miami regarding the quarterback position.

Senior transfer Ryan Williams tore his ACL during spring football, after beating out Olsen, giving the impression that the former 4-star, tenth-best pro-style quarterback in the nation would get his shot by default this fall.

Instead, Miami coaches doubled down and reeled in another transfer in Jake Heaps—a former 5-star prospect and top-ranked quarterback out of Washington, having done stints at BYU and Kansas.

Heaps is a one-year option for the Hurricanes, allowing true freshmen Brad Kaaya and Malik Rosier this season to get a grip on the playbook and speed of the game.

Heaps-to-Miami proved three things about Al Golden and his coaching staff; there was doubt regarding Williams ability to be fully recovered by fall, no one wants to bet the farm on two true freshman out the gate and most-telling, despite redshirting Olsen last year, there are still issue that prevent coaches from labeling him “the guy”.

Olsen’s latest snafu, if true, confirms Miami’s staff’s doubts.

Olsen’s (documented) drama began just over a year ago, when the recent high school graduate was charged with leaving the scene of a single-car accident at home in New Jersey. It was reported at the time that Olsen had “blood on his face” and “appeared to be under the influence of something”.

On its own, the story could’ve easily been a one-and-done situation, put behind him as soon as he stepped onto Miami’s campus, shifting the focus to football. Olsen’s father Chris was his high school coach at Wayne Hills, Brother Greg played tight end for “The U” and now starts for the Carolina Panthers, while other brother Christian was a quarterback at Virginia.

Football is in the Olsen family’s blood, leading many to believe that Kevin would eventually come around—and technically he still could—but based on three setbacks in 13 months, the odds #19 will find success with the Hurricanes just took another monster hit.

Should Heaps lock down this year’s starting job, it’s not far fetched to see Miami redshirting Williams for experience-sake next year. Kaaya is expected to compete this season, which sets the stage for Rosier to redshirt, as well—barring Olsen stays with the program and contributes this fall.

Miami has a verbal commitment from 3-start dual-threat quarterback Dwayne Lawson for 2015, as well as another from 3-star Palmetto pro-style passer Jack Allison. In short, Hurricanes coaches are taking the quarterback position seriously and certainly want players who are like-minded in this sense.

Olsen’s career path will go one of two ways; he’ll either turn it around at Miami and make a run at the starting job in 2015, or this recent string of adversity will do him end, send him packing and inevitably will derail what could’ve been a promising career.

There’s been offseason talk regarding the Olsen football family flexing some muscle and having some influence on the troubled gunslinger, but truth be told, the best option for the redshirt freshmen is to make a beeline for the apartment of Miami’s most-recent transfer, Heaps.

For those who missed it, Heaps guested on WQAM days back and the senior transfer came off ridiculously poised and focused.

The 23-year old fifth-year senior is all business and certainly knows what’s at stake, taking the reigns at his third program in four seasons. He also made it abundantly clear that the opportunity at Miami is a Godsend and one that he surely won’t waste.

Olsen’s career isn’t as do-or-die as Heaps, but could be in even graver danger due to his lack of maturity.

Best way to save it right now? Check those 19-year old ways at the door, saddle up to the veteran and learn how to avoid the pitfalls that almost derailed his career.

One would think Heaps’ energy towards this last-chance opportunity is infectious. Here’s hoping some of that rubs off on Olsen before it’s too late.