Opinion

FSU game Berlin’s final chance out of the doghouse

Everyone remembers where they were when it happened. With the hated rival University of Florida Gators holding a 33-10 lead with 6:10 left in the third quarter on Sept. 6, 2003, ‘Canes fans started pouring out of the Orange Bowl in disbelief, anger, and disappointment as Brock Berlin seemed to have single-handedly thrown the game away – literally – with two interceptions.

As I arrived home from work that evening (while the game was still in progress), I flipped on the TV only to see the insurmountable lead. Almost simultaneously, I received a call from my boys, who, somewhere within their profanity-laced tirades, said something to the effect of, “We are leaving, and Brock Berlin is not a good quarterback.” They had their reasons. In the first two and a half quarters, Brock locked into Miami receivers with such obvious emphasis that it appeared he forgot that he had transferred out of Gainesville a year earlier.

All of a sudden, something clicked. Berlin took control of the shotgun no-huddle offense, leading the team to 28 unanswered points in the game’s final minutes (capped off by a 12-yard scamper by Frank Gore). By the time the dust had settled, the ‘Canes had squeaked by with one of the greatest upsets in school history, 38-33, and Brock Berlin had saved his career.

Of course, the Florida game serves as the finest example of the two Brocks we’ve come to know: one, the former Gatorade national player of the year who compiled a 45-0 record as the starter for Evangel Christian in Louisiana; the other, the Gator transfer who failed to live up to his promise, throwing more interceptions (17) than touchdown passes (12) last season.

I should emphasize that much of the problem last year was not just Berlin. The UM offense was beset by the kinds of injuries (to starting tailback Gore and the offensive line), distractions (from certain “Soldiers”), and inexperience (that would be the receiving corps) that would put ESPN’s Playmakers to shame. Unfortunately, part of being a quarterback is knowing that you will be blamed for an offense’s shortcomings, which is exactly where fans left off last year.

In the team’s final game, the Orange Bowl, Berlin threw two picks to the Seminoles, and FSU kept the game close, eventually losing 16-14.

And so the fans will pick it up again at this season’s start, as the ‘Canes play FSU for the third time in less than a year. With five straight ‘Cane victories over our hated ACC rivals, you can best believe this game could make or break Berlin’s season, not to mention how he will be remembered in the long-run at Quarterback U.

All eyes are on Brock Berlin.

Ben Minkus can be contacted at b.minkus@umiami.edu.

September 3, 2004

Reporters

The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

University of Miami men’s basketball coach Jim Larrañaga received a grand jury subpoena for his phon ...

Get ready for an avalanche of University of Miami defensive backs and linemen descending on the Hard ...

The University of Miami football team has another player with a season-ending injury — and this one ...

When UM coach Mark Richt summoned quarterback Malik Rosier into his office last year, a few months a ...

Quarterback Malik Rosier of the No. 8-ranked Miami Hurricanes maintains a solid third place in what ...

Univeristy of Miami’s Wynwood Art Gallery holds its annual faculty exhibition featuring thought-prov ...

From a game simulating how whales navigate to a tribute to Ella Fitzgerald, the U showcased some of ...

A new mobile game called Blues and Reds, now available worldwide, aims to help researchers study int ...

A major Lancet Commission report, a three-year project headed by UM’s Professor Felicia Knaul and co ...

With a $6.8 million NIH grant, the UM School of Nursing and Health Studies and FIU Robert Stempel Co ...

The Hurricanes will look to slow down an inspired Syracuse team at Hard Rock Stadium on Saturday. ...

University of Miami head coach Mark Richt was selected to the 20-member Paul "Bear" Bryant ...

As a Hurricane Club member, you are invited to participate in the 25th Annual University of Miami Ha ...

University of Miami sophomore Bruce Brown Jr. was among 21 players named to the watch list for the 2 ...

Head coach Katie Meier and senior forward/center Erykah Davenport will represent Miami Thursday at t ...

TMH Twitter Feed
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.