University of Miami

A day after UM defeats Pitt to end regular season, interim coach Larry Scott reflects on the past five weeks

Miami head coach Larry Scott gets Miami wide receiver Rashawn Scott (11) after the team scored a touchdown in the first quarter of an NCAA college football game against Pittsburgh, Friday, Nov. 27, 2015, in Pittsburgh. Miami won 29-24.
Miami head coach Larry Scott gets Miami wide receiver Rashawn Scott (11) after the team scored a touchdown in the first quarter of an NCAA college football game against Pittsburgh, Friday, Nov. 27, 2015, in Pittsburgh. Miami won 29-24. AP

University of Miami interim coach Larry Scott, likely still feeling the emotional remnants of the Hurricanes’ 29-24 victory Friday at Pittsburgh, spoke Saturday morning during a teleconference about the previous day and its aftermath.

“It has actually been fun,’’ said Scott, who shed tears after the game. “It’s rewarding to watch the kids respond the way they’ve responded. They’ve been resilient. They’ve stayed together. They’ve kept working and pushing each other and feeding off what we were giving them. … It’s just good to see them push through it and have the success at the end of the year.

“… [It] was pretty emotional for me.’’

Scott was asked if he had a moment to appreciate what he and his staff had done over the past five games. The Canes went 4-1 after Scott was named interim coach when Al Golden was fired on Oct. 25.

“We’d been talking to the kids about having pride in what we were doing,’’ he said.

“Absolutely as coaches and myself, we take a mo ment. We had to take pride in what we were doing as well, how hard we were working and continuing to push the team, continuing to lay out the plan for them. Absolutely around the room there was a really high pride factor about what we were able to accomplish. But we were able to accomplish it all together, which was maybe even sweeter.

“We weren’t perfect — it wasn’t perfect. But it was a fun ride.’’

Scott, a tight ends coach whose résumé has been greatly bolstered by the job he’s done, said he still had not had a conversation with athletic director Blake James about his coaching future at UM. He said he has been too busy tending to the players and getting them prepared each week.

If he’s not retained, would he try for a head coaching spot at another school?

“It’s one of those funny things you’ve got to take day by day,’’ he said, “and kind of explore whatever options present themselves. … I don’t know how this thing’s going to unfold.’’

The Hurricanes, now 8-4, will learn their bowl destination on Dec. 6, a day after the various league championships are played.

Scott said he’ll give the players a couple days to “catch up with their families’’ and “let their bodies heal’’ and “focus on academics as we get closer to exam time.

“… Then we’ll get into the bowl schedule — lifting and running and those types of things.’’

RECRUITING BEGINS

Sunday begins the contact period for recruiting, and Scott said coaches will “move forward with the recruiting calendar’’ and “continue to sell the brand and what the University of Miami has to offer young people educationally’’ and with the “tradition of the football program.’’

Regarding the NFL Draft, Scott said he and the other coaches will soon be preparing the underclassmen who are considering entering the draft by giving them the information they need to make the best decisions for themselves and their families.

He said he hasn’t actually been approached by any players asking him about the draft but has “had communication with guys that those opportunities may present themselves.’’

BUTCH DAVIS WATCH

Also Saturday, ex-UM coach Butch Davis — an expected candidate for UM’s coaching vacancy and seemingly the people’s choice — did not make his usual appearance for ESPN as a college football analyst.

His absence fueled rampant speculation on social media that he might be interviewing with James for the Miami position, especially when ESPN’s Robert Smith tweeted, “I’m solo in studio today on ESPN2, no Butch Davis. Hmmmmn’’

Davis and his agent Jimmy Sexton declined to comment Saturday on whether Davis had interviewed.  

When asked if Davis was interviewing for the job Saturday or Sunday, James said Sunday in a text message that he was "not discussing the search."

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