Randy Shannon gets Axed

27 Nov
   Miami coach Randy Shannon, right center, protests a foul call during the second half of an NCAA college football game against South Florida, Saturday, Nov. 27, 2010, in Miami. South Florida won 23-20 in overtime.

Miami fired coach Randy Shannon on Saturday night, hours after the Hurricanes finished a 7-5 regular season that began with championship expectations.
Athletic director Kirby Hocutt made the call.

“We have made a decision to seek new leadership for our football program,” Hocutt said in a release. “Our expectations are to compete for championships and return to the top of the college football world.”

Shannon received a four-year extension just before the start of the 2010 season. He was 28-22 in four seasons at Miami.

The fate of all members of Shannon’s staff has not been determined. Some will remain for Miami’s bowl game, but one assistant coach told The Associated Press that “everybody, all the coaches, weight room, the training room guys, secretaries, we all think we’re gone.” The coach spoke on condition of anonymity because he had not been told about his own job.

Shannon had considered firing both offensive coordinator Mark Whipple and defensive coordinator John Lovett in recent days, along with some — but not all — of his other assistants.

Hocutt was scheduled to meet with reporters at 1 p.m. Sunday, and players were told a team meeting would be held beforehand.

Hocutt made the decision shortly after Miami lost to South Florida 23-20 in overtime on Saturday afternoon, in a game where only about 27,000 people filled the 73,000 seats at Sun Life Stadium. A plane circled the stadium before kickoff calling for a coaching change, and players left fearing that it would be the last time they played for Shannon.

“Put it on us as players,” wide receiver Leonard Hankerson said.

The sentiment may have been noted, but in the end Shannon was responsible.
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