EDSALL ON MIAMI’S WISH LIST

To say football is a religion in Florida may be hyperbole but not by much. Vacationing here in the Sunshine State, The Shad has seen first hand how the firing of a coach can send people into a tizzy (there‘s been three days of press coverage and counting about the dismissal of Vero Beach’s high school coach) . Now on Day Two of the analysis of the dismissal of University of Miami coach Randy Shannon, our own guy, UConn coach Randy Edsall is right in the middle of the dither.

Speculation is rampant that Edsall may be pursued as the next coach of the Hurricanes. For instance, Edsall tops the list of graphic titled, “Who’s Next” in the Schripps Treasure Coast newspaper, the Indian River Press Journal. It points out prominently that Edsall has won three of four bowl games at Uconn. His name is followed by college coaching heavyweights former NFL quarterback Jim Harbaugh (Stanford), former University of Miami quarterback Mark Richt (Georgia), Chris Peterson (Boise State) and even former Super Bowl-winning NFL coach Jon Gruden (Tampa Bay Buccaneers).

It may be wishful thinking on Miami’s part, though. Edsall has made no secret of his dedication to UConn. His name was floated for the top job at his alma mater, Syracuse. He quickly dismissed it.

That doesn’t mean Edsall isn’t an extremely attractive candidate for head coach at any school. It’s one thing to have the best players on the planet and win. It’s quite another to take a struggling team and turns things around in midseason. The Huskies (7-4, 4-2) need to go to Tampa and beat South Florida (7-4, 3-3) next Saturday to win the Big East title and a BCS bowl bid, maybe the Fiesta Bowl on New Year’s Day. The game is on ESPN2 at 8 p.m. Think the powers that be at the University of Miami will be watching?