With his team underachieving and the pressure of the media, fans and leadership hovering above him, a Miami football head coach was fired Monday morning.
Although the Miami coach fired was former Dolphins headman Joe Philbin, that very same statement could be made for Hurricanes headman Al Golden very soon.
While the Canes entered this season with modest expectations, the Dolphins and their fans had dreams of the playoffs. After a big signing like Ndamukong Suh, those expectations grew even higher.
After a 1-3 start, including an absolute dismantling at the hands of the New York Jets in London on Sunday, the Dolphins decided to start anew despite the fact no team has ever made the playoffs after firing its coach after four games.
With Philbin gone and the Dolphins floundering, football fans across Miami will shift their full attention to the Hurricanes. Golden now sits in the hottest seat in South Florida.
Despite a reasonably strong start to the season, albeit against weak opposition, the Canes came out flat against a Cincinnati team starting a freshman backup quarterback in a 34-23 loss last Thursday.
Similar to Philbin, Golden faces intense pressure now not just because of his team’s performance this season, but over his entire tenure as head coach in Miami. Philbin was 24-28 with the Dolphins when he was fired; Golden is currently 31-23 in his time at Miami.
Also like the former coach of the Dolphins, Golden will travel with his team to take on a rival which could turn the season in different directions. While the Canes aren’t expected to win Saturday in Tallahassee, they at least need to show fight and competitiveness.
The Dolphins didn’t need to win Sunday either, but, like the Hurricanes, needed to show signs of life and progress. To say they didn’t is putting it lightly.
Going forward, Golden’s team will face an uphill battle against some talented opponents. Miami doesn’t have to go undefeated the rest of the way, but the team does have to show up and actually be competitive unlike Thursday night’s debacle in Cincinnati.
Maybe Golden will be fired after the year even with some progress, but if the Canes start mailing it in like Philbin’s Dolphins, the pressure and calls for Golden’s dismissal will only get louder.