A recent rankings poll was conducted on the CNN Sports illustrated website that chronicled “The 25 Most Hated Teams of All Time”, and as I scrolled through the list I saw several interesting choices.
Many I agreed with and some I did not understand why they were even on the list, then I came to the team ranked at #11 which was the 1990 University of Miami Football team. I obviously was not surprised that Miami was on the list because that is all you ever hear from people who THINK they know about college football.
Here is an excerpt of what was written about the 11th most hated team of all time in reference to their Cotton Bowl appearance.
“Seldom has a team been so undisciplined ... and unstoppable. Miami had a Cotton Bowl record 132 yards in penalties. At halftime the 'Canes finished with 202 yards in penalties, a bowl record that still stands. They also won 46-3. "If they aren't the best," 'Horns coach David McWilliams said: "I don't want to play the best." -- Austin Murphy (www.cnnsi.com )
I thought that was interesting that it seemed their entire basis for being ranked the 11th most hated team of all time was based on one game, a woodshed beating of the Texas Longhorns.
So I noted that and continued to scroll up the list wondering what teams were in the top ten. I look through the teams and I am passing the 2007 New England Patriots at the sixths spot (can’t argue with that one), the 1988-89 Detroit Pistons at the number two spot.
Who would you pick as the most hated sports team out of the following choices?
Then I get a look at who is picked as the MOST hated team of all time, and it is the 1986 Miami Hurricanes football team. Here is the entire passage that was written, so you can see their reasoning for ranking the Hurricanes in the top spot.
“His players were visionaries, early practitioners of an in-your-face brand of football that went out of its way to belittle and intimidate opponents. It was, in a lot of ways, the opposite of sportsmanship. It was a 'Cane thing. To say that Jimmy Johnson (pictured, left, with Michael Irvin) gave his players free reign was an understatement.
The '86 Hurricanes were caught up in "fights and fraud and alleged shoplifting and other unsavory shenanigans involving more than 40 players," wrote SI 's Rick Reilly. "Miami may be the only squad in America that has its team picture taken from the front and from the side."
It was also flat-out loaded, an NFL developmental squad, and not inclined toward modesty. The top-ranked 'Canes showed up in Tempe, Ariz., for the national title game rocking military fatigues, in stark contrast to the coats and ties sported by the charges of "St. Joe " Paterno, as Johnson dubbed his counterpart. In that famed Fiesta Bowl game, Heisman Trophy winner
Vinny Testaverde threw five picks and Miami turned the ball over seven times in a 14-10 Penn State upset that made a lot of people across the republic very, very happy.” -- Austin Murphy (www.cnnsi.com)
First let’s point out the obvious Miami was the ONLY team to make this list twice, the Pistons, Yankees, and Chicago Black Sox were all on there even the 2005 USC Trojans.
None of them made this list more than once. The other constant with that list is that most of the teams on that list were very successful, or champions in their respective sports. What this says is that people don’t hate the Hurricanes just because of their Bravado; they hate the Hurricanes because they win championships with a chip on their shoulder.
If you look at the majority of the teams on that list the Pistons were known as the Bad Boys, even the Jimmy Johnson led 1992 Dallas Cowboys were on there. If you look at it all of these teams were highly successful, and people hated them because they won without being nice guys.
They went on the field and looked at the team across from them as an opponent not a group of friends who they were going to hang out with after the game.
Those Miami Hurricanes teams played football the way it should be played, with heart, emotion, and a general dislike of the team they are playing.
People always bring up all the “off the field” stories about those Miami teams, but what they do not talk about is hardly any of those players ever missed a game on Saturday because of an off field issue.
If Miami players were committing as many crimes blatantly as all the rumors say they would have surely been caught multiple times over a four year period.
The players at Miami just feed that stigma and over exaggerate all of it because they are proud that people were against them, and the succeeded despite people objections. Thinks of the genius in all of this, teams from 1986 and 1990 were so polarizing that they shaped the perception of an entire football program.
The perception remains today even though Miami has hardly had any players arrested over the past five seasons, which just proves all of the media hate is based off of personal bias more than fact.
Were those Miami teams in your face, cocky, and intense? You bet they were.
But Michael Jordan was just as bad, and if you believe the stories he was even worse and not one Chicago Bulls team made this list. Jordan is loved by millions, and he played the game of basketball much the same way as the Miami Hurricanes played football, but he gets nowhere near the same level of hate.
There was also a section talking about teams that barely missed the cut for making the top 25 most hated list, and the 2002 Ohio State Buckeyes were listed. There were appropriately named “The Luckeyes” for that good fortune filled season they experienced which can only be described as something of a dream. Well at least in South Florida the Gators and Buckeyes are fighting for the top spot of most hated team by Miami Hurricanes fans, maybe it will be a tie for first!
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