When the University of Miami hired Al Golden to coach the Miami Hurricanes football team after the 2010 season many 'Canes fans felt that the football program had taken one positive step forward.
When Golden welcomed back some of the old school players and even former UM offensive line coach Art Kehoe to contribute to the resurrection of the famed Hurricane program most Miami fans thought that this was another big step forward.
When Golden implemented an old school Miami Hurricane strength and conditioning program with the help of Andrew Swasey to build toughness, unity and team strength Hurricane fans unanimously and literally applauded out loud as another huge step forward.
Now, with the recent stunning news of allegations of NCAA violations that could send the program reeling into college football oblivion, the Hurricane Nation has been brought to its collective knees.
Hoping for a positive outcome some Hurricane fans have tucked their tails between their legs and have managed to stop bashing other universities for their recently confirmed NCAA violations and instead are looking inward at their own program's potential consequences if these allegations are proven true.
It is really anyone's guess about where this investigation will go from here but for now we wait, and hope and pray that there are more steps forward rather than back for the UM program.
Below is a statement released by UM President Donna Shalala this afternoon.
"To the University Community:
Since its founding more than 85 years ago, the University of Miami has stood for excellence in higher education in every endeavor, every degree, and every student. Our more than 15,000 students, on three campuses in 11 schools and colleges, and over 150,000 alumni expect our core values to remain steadfast and true in times of extraordinary achievement as well as those rare times when those values are called into question.
As a member of the University family, I am upset, disheartened, and saddened by the recent allegations leveled against some current and past student-athletes and members of our Athletic Department. Make no mistake—I regard these allegations with the utmost of seriousness and understand the concern of so many of you. We will vigorously pursue the truth, wherever that path may lead, and I have insisted upon complete, honest, and transparent cooperation with the NCAA from our staff and students. Our counsel is working jointly with the NCAA Enforcement Division in a thorough and meticulous investigation, which will require our patience.
I am in daily communication with our Board of Trustees, Executive Committee, Director of Athletics, and counsel, and will continue to work closely with the leaders of our University.
To our students, parents, faculty, alumni, and supporters—I encourage you to have patience as the process progresses; to have confidence in knowing that we are doing everything possible to discover the truth; to have faith in the many outstanding student-athletes and coaches who represent the University; and to have pride in what our University has accomplished and aspires to be."