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Miami could find its answer in Bama assistant coach Mario Cristobal

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The realization always comes hard. As much as a fan may love the University of Miami, the college coaches of America are not all applying for the job.

Shocking, right? By now, you might think that Utah’s Kyle Whittingham and Memphis’ Justin Fuente and Ole Miss’ Hugh Freeze would be taking Ibis to dinner. But UM is not quite UM anymore, and the job doesn’t pay that well, and expectations are through the roof.

So where should the Hurricanes turn?

There are the usual suspects, of course, such as 63-year-old former coach Butch Davis, former assistant (and Bucs coach) Greg Schiano, and former player Rob Chudzinski (now an assistant with the Colts). But are any of these the right man to lead the Hurricanes into the future?

Rich Rodriguez of Arizona also came up quickly in conversation, but it’s a question of whether he would relocate from a school where he is 31-17 in three seasons.

One name that is sure to be interesting is Mario Cristobal, the former UM player and FIU coach who was the national recruiter this year at Alabama. Cristobal seems like an intriguing choice, because he certainly knows the area, and he’s a link to the glory days of Miami.

Whoever the new coach is, he’ll face a challenge from fans who expect the team to return to its glory days.


Gary Shelton is one of the most recognized and honored sportswriters in the history of the state. He has won the APSE's national columnist of the year twice and finished in the top 10 eight times. He was named the Florida Sportswriter of the Year six times. Gary joined SaintPetersBlog in the spring, helping to bring a sports presence to the website. Over his time in sports writing, Gary has covered 29 Super Bowls, 10 Olympics, Final Fours, Masters, Wimbledons and college national championships. He was there when the Bucs won a Super Bowl, when the Lightning won a Stanley Cup and when the Rays went to a World Series. He has seen Florida, FSU and Miami all win national championships, and he covered Bear Bryant, Bobby Bowden and Don Shula along the way. He and his wife Janet have four children: Eric, Kevin, K.C. and Tori. To contact, visit

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