Lawrence Cager out for season due to knee injury

Miami Hurricanes wide receiver will miss the 2016 season due to a knee injury, according to? Shandel Richardson of the Orlando Sun Sentinel.

The injury reportedly took place during one of the team’s off-season workouts.

Cager?finished last season with eight passes for 70 yards in 11 appearances for the Hurricanes.

He was expected to start as a sophomore in the upcoming season.

Nashville is a rapidly growing city best known for its country music scene. The Cumberland River snakes through the city, separating the downtown state capitol from the Tennessee Titans field in east Nashville. Vanderbilts majestic Southern brick buildings sit in the southwestern corner of the city, not too far from famed Music Row. A replica of the Parthenon that was built to commemorate the centennial of Tennessees entry into the Union, sits proudly in Centennial Park, just across busy West End Avenue from the campus.?

The university, the only private school in the SEC, is a source of pride for the city as well as a major player in the economy. Ranked among the best schools in the nation, it is also the areas largest employer. Nearly 21,000 people work for the university and its medical center, a number that just tops the local government (including schools) as well as the state government. Compared to its SEC counterparts, Vanderbilt is an undersized school with an undersized stadium located in a large city with a professional sports culture, including the Titans and the NHLs Predators, independent from the University.?

Vanderbilt is not known as a football school. After capturing the national title this past spring, it is perhaps a baseball school. It is certainly a bowling school, the womens team having won the national championship in 2007, the first national athletic championship in the schools history. The womens basketball team regularly makes the NCAA tournament. Vanderbilt football is best known as a perennial bottom feeder in the Southeastern Conference.

Braden Gall, a sportswriter who hosts a weekly radio show in Nashville about all things college football, says You could probably argue that Alabama, Auburn, Georgia, Ole Miss have as much following in this town as Vanderbilt.?

But then James Franklin came to Nashville. From 2011 to ’14, Vanderbilt turned in its best three-year run ever on the football field and the Commodores sustained success created an unprecedented fervor among fans on campus.

In late 2010, when Vanderbilt announced that Franklin would be its next head coach, chancellor Nick Zeppos said, We win everywhere at Vanderbilt. We win athletically, we win academically and there is no darn reason [why] we cant win at football. Coming off a successful stint as an assistant head coach and offensive coordinator at the University of Maryland, Franklin had a reputation as a first-rate recruiter and had coached multiple Terrapin players into the NFL.?

Former Vanderbilt players say that Franklin brought with him to the university a sense of urgency and a bottomless well of motivation. Karl Butler, a linebacker who entered the program the year before Franklin became head coach, calls him an incredible motivator and says playing under him was challenging because success was really demanded and really expected.

DeAndre Jones, a linebacker who attended Vanderbilt from 2008-12 and graduated with a degree in mechanical engineering, says Franklin set up a model where he changed the culture, changing the mind-set of the players. He pushed us. He wanted us to think that we could always do better. Franklin also made sure, Jones says, that players were doing the right things on the field, off the field, holding us accountable.

Thad McHaney, a defensive end and defensive tackle who played under Franklin and then was a student-coach alongside him, says that Franklin did a few things that had a large impact on his players. First, he made sure that players had relationships with the staff. We all knew all of his coaches kids by name. He created a culture of fans and, McHaney said, push[ed] all of us, [gave] so much effort, let us know who he was, positives and negatives. Its very hard to not play hard for a guy like that.

In 2011, his first season as head coach, the team finished 6-6 in the regular season and played in what would be three straight bowl games. Success didnt immediately translate into filled stadium seats. Franklin worked tirelessly to fire up the student body, spending hours high-fiving students on campus and creating the now-ubiquitous slogan Anchor Down. (Its painted on the walls of the tunnel that players run through when they take the field.)?

For the first bowl game, says Ashlyn Alongi, who was a cheerleader for the three years that Franklin was head coach, he went around and students would call their parents to try to ask to get flights to come back for the bowl game. The students would hand Coach Franklin the phone and he would talk and plead to the families to change their flights. Silly things like that to show that he wanted you to be at the bowl, he wanted you to be in this. She adds, Students loved him. DeAndre Jones puts it succinctly: Franklin really did a good job … making Vanderbilt [football] matter in Nashville.

After a successful second season that saw Vanderbilt finish in the Top 25, all of the winning resulted in a sold-out opening home game in 2013 and, in November, a large new indoor practice facility. Then, in early January 2014, after just over three years in Nashville and seven months after the arrest of four of his players on sexual-assault charges, Franklin announced that he was leaving Vanderbilt to fill the vacant head coach position at Penn State.?

That Penn State, a school that had become infamous for an assistant coach now in jail for sexually abusing children, would hire a coach who is connected, however tangentially, to an ongoing sexual-assault case involving multiple of his former players was baffling to some observers. Franklin told the press after his hire that it couldnt have been a more thorough interview process. We discussed everything. Penn States athletic director at the time, Dave Joyner, said that This whole process of vetting was maybe the most thorough vetting process of any search, perhaps of any position at this university. We utilized multiple independent third party sources. We used contacts and people that knew James closely, including officials and administrators from Vanderbilt. In the end, Joyner said, My belief is that James Franklin is a man of extremely high character.?

The Hurricanes are coming off a season in which they finished with an 8C5 record that included a loss to Washington State in the Sun Bowl. In December, the team announced?usa wholesale jerseys Mark Richt would be their next head coach.

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