Miami football and fan base is still relevant by most measures

In a post ranking the top 50 fan bases in college football by Canes Warning’s partner site Saturday Blitz, the Miami football fanbase was ranked the 16th best in the country. The statement by detractors claiming Miami is not relevant anymore is not entirely true.

The Miami football program was a dynasty from the early 1980s through the mid-1990s and against in the early 2000s. Many rivals and detractors have claimed that Miami football is not relevant anymore. Although not the elite program it once was, the Hurricanes are still in the national consciousness.

Saturday Blitz, the partner site for Canes Warning that covers the entirety of college football ranked the Top 50 fanbases in the sport. The Miami football program was considered to have the 16th best fan base in college football. The four factors used in the rankings were tradition, passion perception and saturation.

Each of the four factors has its own definition of what makes that part of a fanbase unique. Tradition by the Saturday Blitz definition was what makes a program unique. Passion is how much the fans care, perception is how much a fanbase is respected nationally and Saturation is the size of the fanbase.

The tradition of Miami football on a national stage is new by college football standards. The Hurricanes became college football royalty with the 1983 National Championship and subsequent rise to power in the 1980s. The tradition of the U and running through the smoke onto the field are a major part of college football.

The Miami profile by Saturday Blitz examined the players who have made the Miami football program what it today. It would be nearly impossible to name all the impactful played who have made Miami the program it is. Any discussion of the Miami football program has to begin with Michael Irvin and Ed Reed.

16. Miami
The good
“The U” defined an era of college football. Stars like Michael Irvin, Warren Sapp and Ray Lewis have etched their way into every “Greatest of All Time List” at both the college and pro level. When it comes to experiencing mountaintops, few fans outside of Miami and Tuscaloosa have lived to see what the Canes have accomplished.

The bad
Swings and misses on the recruiting trail and ineffective coaching landed the Canes in a word with Turnover Chains and broken hearts. The memory of what was can only placate a fanbase for so long.

The bottom line
Miami is one of the most identifiable programs in college football history. They’re not too far removed from a 15-year stretch which featured four national championships and five additional Top-10 finishes,

Once the kings of the state of Florida, Miami is living on memories hoping to return to glory. Despite the tough times, there’s no taking away what those decades of success brought.

There is a lot to unpack with the profile by Saturday Blitz. Miami fans often live too much in the past. There seems to currently be predominantly two types of Miami fans. Those that expect the team to immediately rise to past glories and others who expect the Hurricanes to continue to be mired in mediocrity.

One of the greatest misconceptions about the Miami football fans is that they do not show up to games. The Hurricanes averaged 52,829 fans in six home games in 2019. That was about 2,000 fans less than Purdue who finished 30th in the nation in attendance. Miami draws more in even-numbered years.

Florida State plays at Miami in even-numbered years and at Florida State in odd-numbered years. Florida State fans will point out that their fanbase makes up that difference. It is an extremely short-sided view. Most fanbases get most excited about their rivalry game and that will help boost attendance numbers.

Next: Manny Diaz discusses Miami football without fans

Outsiders often do not understand that Miami is an event town. When the U is rolling, the fans turn out and are the most raucous in college football. When Miami defeated Notre Dame at Hard Rock Stadium in 2017, analyst Kirk Herbstreit stated that nothing is like a night game in Miami.