Shannon makes it official: It’s a Kirby thing…

Well it looks like last night’s little bird shed some wisdom on the quarterback controversy. The Rumor Mill was correct this time around as Kirby Freeman was named starter over the more experienced Kyle Wright.

The emails have been pouring in this morning. Most fans happy with the decision, some still on board with Wright and others still praying for a miraculous recovery by freshman Robert Marve a month after a scary car wreck which will most likely sideline him for 2007.

Personally, I’m torn. I haven’t seen any action this spring, but I’ve been told by a few sources that Freeman truly did out perform Wright. That the staff called the race much closer than it really was in an effort to keep things under wraps until Marshall week.

I hope that’s the case, because if it was really neck-and-neck, I can’t fathom starting Freeman over Wright. I’d roll the dice with the experienced drop back passer and insert the mobile QB for his legs and ability to throw the deep ball. That said, there’s a reason I’m behind a monitor instead of making seven figures, wearing the headphones on game day.

Randy Shannon stated early on that once a decision was made, there’d be no looking back. I’m curious to see if he still stand by that. Wright has a hyper extended knee, which supposedly didn’t play into the decision – though it did force him to miss the final scrimmage which could’ve played into Freeman winning the starting job.

Of course I play the ‘what if’ game here. What if Freeman falters early on? What if Wright’s knee gets healthy and he is an asset to the offense when in the game? Does Shannon stick with Freeman because he was so adamant in saying once a guy was chosen he’d remain ‘the guy’ for the season? Again, something which the first year head coach will be judged on as the season progresses.

Freeman is Miami’s starter and I’m 1000% behind the kid. I do love that he’s a gamer. I love that he got a “U” tattoo on his back to prove his loyalty to the program after transfer rumors swirled. I think his attitude is in the right place and feel he embraced the competition en route to earning the starting gig.

Had Shannon chosen Wright, I’d give the readers a list of reasons why I was behind #3. Sadly the majority of our fan base doesn’t feel the same.

Message boards were in fire this morning. Ridiculous posts like, “RIP Kyle Wright” or commentary to the effect of “thanks for nothing”, “enjoy driving the bus” or calling him team water boy.

We’re talking about a 22-year old kid who’s spent the past four years leaving it all on the field for this program. Blood. Sweat. Tears. Heart. Soul. You name it.

Wright’s done more for the University of Miami over the past four years than a gross of Internet tough guys will do in a lifetime. Especially if they keep up with the idiotic and ignorant online posts. This is probably the same bunch who booed Wright relentlessly last season and cursed at he and his family during the 17-10 loss to Virginia Tech last year.

Stand by your man, people. Freeman is the guy. We’re all behind him.

In the process, just make sure you don’t step directly on the other man and crush him. In the blink of an eye, twist of an ankle or shaky start by Freeman, Wright could be back behind center before you know it. Let’s attempt to have some class here. Anyone with half a brain realized Wright was only part of the problem these past few years.

If you’re going to hate, feel free to spread some of the non-love to Larry Coker, Dan Werner, Rich Olson and Todd Berry as none of the above did anything to help Wright’s career at The U.

Congrats Kirby. Hang tough, Kyle.




7 thoughts on “Shannon makes it official: It’s a Kirby thing…

  1. 4 Offensive Coordinators since 2003 .. let me repeat that, 4 Offensive Coordinators since 2003 – am I wrong? Please correct me if so. As I remember, in 2005 Wright was the ACC’s #2 QB in passing efficiency and led the ACC in TD passes. Have you ever looked at how many times the kid has been sacked the past two years? Don’t bother, I did and here it is. 2006: FSU 3 sacks, Louisville 4 sacks, UNC 2 sacks, FIU 2 sacks, Duke 1 sack, GTech 6 sacks, VTech 2 sacks for a grand total of 19 times. 2005: FSU 9 sacks (school record), Clemson 5 sacks, USF 3 sacks, Temple 2 sacks, UNC 1 sack, VTech 1 sack, GTech 7 sacks, Virginia 1 sack, LSU 4 sacks for a grand total of 33 times. It’s pretty hard to make your reads and do your job when you’re on your back – (unless you’re a UF co-ed, “easy” doesn’t even come close to describing those chicas, wow). How many of those sacks would have taken place if Wright was more of a “mobile” QB? I doubt it would’ve made that much of a difference. Yes, I along with other ‘Cane fans saw Wright drop some mental craps on the field … for example: running out of bounds short of a 1st down conversion on a 4th and short bootleg play while not looking up to see a wide open man just a few yards away (Greg Olsen I believe?) that had nothing but green and an open end zone in waiting for him. But I also saw plenty of dropped passes by receivers and people not taking care of their job on the field in order to give Wright time to do what a QB does – move the ball down that damn field. If anyone hasn’t seen the 31spoonerstreet video on YouTube of Miami vs. FSU, watch it and listen to what “The Playmaker” says at the beginning …. “Each man has to make a promise, one to another, I will get my job done” … People were not getting their job done on the offense – including Wright at times. But for every 1 mistake that Wright made, I saw 2 that the O-line made or 2 that the receivers made.

    Now it’s Kirby’s turn. How long will it take for the Freeman fanatics to turn on him when he starts throwing for more INT’s than TD’s like last year? Hopefully that won’t happen, but I wonder if they’ll go back to hopping on Wright’s jock if it does – just like in the NFL, the backup QB is the most popular player on the team. One thing I see happening now and I can’t stand are people calling for Robert Marve to come in. Eeeesh. The kid is injured. Even before he got injured, did you really want to give him a baptism by fire when you have a Junior and Senior ahead of him? The kid is a FROSH people. I never ever wish injury upon players, especially if they’re on my on team – that’s just sadistic – but the injury to Marve, having him sit and learn the Nix system IS a good thing.

    I watched Kirby last year. I watched him go 2-2 in his 4 starts and watched him almost beat Maryland – until the final drive when he threw an INT when The U was only down by a field goal. I saw him lead a comeback against Boston College, but I also saw him throw for 3 INT’s that game. He has the physical tools, let’s hope the mental tools catch up. I don’t fall in love with the words “mobile QB” either – not everyone is a Donovan McNabb in college, a Charlie Ward, a Aaron Brooks, a Vince Young, a Ron Mexico, etc. Yes, it’s nice to have a QB that can move if protection breaks down or gain yards on an occasional bootleg .. but hopefully the QB thinks pass first, pass second, then run if necessary. QB’s that run around a lot are also QB’s that don’t know how to hold the ball while they run. They’re targets for the heat seeking missile defensive players that are looking to cause turnovers and “lights out night night” time for the QB. Want a perfect example? November 5th, 2005 .. The U vs. #3 Virginia Tech in their house. The U is a 6 1/2 point underdog with Ron Mexico’s little imbecile brother Marcus running the show for the Turkeys. Little Mexico fumbled the ball 4 times, mainly due to a party of ‘Canes constant meetings in Little Mexico’s backfield as soon as the ball was snapped … but also partly due to Little Mexico trying to be “mobile”. Little Mexico (who had turnovers on four straight possessions in the 2nd half) said that “One fumble slipped out of my hands … the other fumbles was my ball security and me being reckless out there.” I’m glad that Kirby has the tag of being “mobile”. I’d be more glad if Kirby had the tag of being “mobile” and “accurate” – and I don’t mean “accurate” in throwing to the other team for more times than he throws to his own. I’m hoping that Patrick Nix has worked the magic on Kirby that he worked on Taylor Bennett in the 10 days he had to prepare him to play West Virginia in the Gator Bowl last year. Bennett threw for 335 yards and 3 TD’s against West Virginia’s 3-3-5 Defense. Not bad. Know how many yards Bennett ran for that game? Zero.

    Am I against Kirby? No. Never have been. He has my full support as the starting QB. This is Coach Shannon’s team – I believe completely in him and the decisions he and his staff make. He and Coach Nix decided that Kirby would give The U the best chance to win. They’re out there everyday watching those kids on the field, in the film room, in the weight room … they know exactly who and what they’re seeing from each ‘Cane. Everyone knew that there was no depth chart going into this season, that everyone must compete to win a job. If you don’t do yours, then the next in line will take it. That’s the way it should be – no one should expect to just start at their position because of their tenure with the team or their name. And if someone does go down due to them not taking care of their job or God forbid an injury – then the next one will step up and be just as productive or maybe even more productive than the one they took the place of. It’s what I like to call the “Stormtrooper” way. Just like in the Star Wars movies, if one Stormtrooper went down, another one would fill in immediately and you couldn’t even tell the difference. I actually think The U has a nice situation on their hands right now, Kirby being a Junior and being named the starter with a more than capable Senior in Wright ready to step in at any time if needed. If you’re looking to the future, this is a good thing for The U – Kirby will be well prepared for next year with an entire year learning the Nix way.

    -S.Woodward, a die-hard ‘Cane living in Tampa

    “Pressure does 1 of 2 things to people … I pointed to the Florida State locker room and said for the good, for the GOOD – it makes them fold … but for US the GREAT, it makes us focus”

    -The Playmaker

  2. Well said, I sit in the west endzone and it killed me to have all those people booing a bunch of kids, I can’t imagine how it must feel to be 20-something and be booed for trying my best and doing what the coaches coached me to do. I have a 5 year old son and if he is ever in a situation were he is doing his best and I’m surrounded by idiots booing my kid and his brothers on the field I don’t know how I would handle it. I would want to support my son, just not sure I could be at the games.

    For all the boo-birds out there, you try to do what they do. Go to class, get the grades. Go to practice and work your @ss off, play on national television. Do that for 4 years with about 5-6 hours of sleep a night, deal with the press and the pressure that goes with playing here. Do that for 4 years and do it for free. For the Boo-bird parents out there, I’ve seen you. What the hell are you showing your kid? How are you raising them? You are showing them how to disrespect and verbally abuse another person. I ask you would you be booing your kid?


    Go canes!!

    Wear Orange on Sept. 1st

    See you all there!

  3. I think Kirby vs Kyle is 6 of one half dozen the other they are both good enough. The problem I have seen the past few years is with the WR. I have never seen more catchable balls dropped by WR in my life, but then again we were spoiled just on recurting Generation ago to have the likes of Santana Moss, Reggie Wayne and Andre Johnson with decent TE play out of Shockey and Winslow. Dont put it all on the QB he just delivers the gifts he cant accept them too. we just need a QB with brains (Dorsey) and WR’s with hands (see above) the rest will take care of itself

  4. when i watched the press confrence yesterday it seemed as though randy was coming across as saying no position is final. thats been his whole thing through all of this-create competition at every position. he said he would put the best team on the field every week…no matter if it means sitting a former starter, if a lower person on the depth chart takes off. if kirby falters i dont think he will have any problem putting kyle in. or any other position for that matter

  5. Have to disagree with your post (for once!). Why not roll the dice and run with the QB that will be around also next year. Coach is retooling the U. It probably won’t happen this year anyways. Plus w/highly touted frosh qb sidelined for the year you might as well see what #7 has in store. Lastly, you talk about #3 having experience; sadly his experience at the U has been absolutely horrid. Big games against DUKE, Wake Forest, and NC is all he has on his resume. When it came down to it, he is a poor man’s Brady Quinn, whom I believe to be highly overrated.

  6. To me, the whole offensive problem start with the line. For the past several years, they have not protected the QB and have not created many holes for the TB’s to run through. Just think back to all the wide sweeps we tried to run which ALL just got blown up every time. I am in favor of playing the best guy at the time, but the fault lies at the feet of the big guys up front. I do like giving Freeman a shot and hope that Wright continues to compete and not leave. We need to make an atmosphere of competition and may the best player win. I love The U and support the program. I want the best players on the field no matter their year.

    – Columbus Cane

  7. Roll the dice? We are talking about the “comeback” season to help turn Miami back into the powerhouse it deserves to be. Kyle Wright was probably the most highly recruited and highly sough after QB Miami has ever seen coming out of high school. He was co player of the year with Chris Leak! And now we are going to “roll the dice” and give a weak arm Kirby Freeman a chance? Or is the coaching staff predicting another dismal offensive line performance this year?

    It’s a shame Kyle, you have all the talent in the world, and you should be a Heisman hopeful right now with scouts foaming at the mouth for a piece of you, but instead your being benched by a weak arm average qb at best all because your supporting coaching staff hasnt given you the tools you need to succeed.

    Do me a favor and imagine what Kyle Wright could of done with the support and weapons Ken Dorsey had… scary thought. Despite Ken’s uncontested heart and leadership, Kyle has all the tools in the world and could of been the best QB out of Miami, but thanks to the offensive line, thats a shattered dream.

    Hurricane Warning

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