Brawl Takes Center Stage, UM Wins 35-0

MIAMI – A bench-clearing brawl delayed the game for 24 minutes in the third quarter as Miami defeated Florida International, 35-0 in the first ever meeting between the two schools.

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AUDIO Captain Jon Beason Talks About Brawl


After a Jon Peattie made extra point that gave Miami a 14-0 with 9 minutes left in the third quarter, players began pushing each other after the play.

Punches were eventually thrown by a few players on the field and then the benches on both teams emptied as numerous fights broke out all over the field. Every player from both teams were on the field even injured players.

A total of 13 players from both teams were ejected from the game, however a number of other players could have also been ejected if the officials would have kept track of everyone.

"I think that it will affect the image of our program greatly, but in a positive way," Miami coach Larry Coker said. "I think that when they see the video and they see how it was handled they will be impressed with our players. This will not be a very big thing for the University of Miami. It was impressive in that it was handled very well."

Miami players Bruce Johnson, Carlos Armour, Charlie Jones, Derrick Morse, and Chris Barney were ejected from the game.

Florida International (0-7) had eight players ejected including seven starters.

"They got some lunatics over there that want to start some fights," UM captain Jon Beason said. "I don't think it was FIU wanting to start a fight, it was probably just a couple of guys messing around and they don't know what's going on. Then their bench goes and then our bench goes. It's unfortunate."

The brawl was the second for Miami (4-2) in seven games as they had a fight with LSU following the Peach Bowl last season.

"Why are you going to fight with pads on? It's ridiculous and stupid," Beason said. "You know its going to hurt your hands.

"It was an extra point, the kick goes through and it's 14-0. Okay I'm gonna take a shot at Miami player. For what? It's unfortunate guys got kicked out of the game, but it is all in defense. This is their national championship. To us it is another game on our schedule. From the very beginning they were throwing punches, late hits, that type of stuff trying to get us out of our game. I think that was part of their game plan, not from the coaches, but as individuals."

FIU coach Don Strock was not happy with the melee.

"It was a good football game, until a point," Strock said. "And then—I'm embarrassed and I apologize to FIU and all of the people there. We certainly don't condone that…there will be penalties handed down from commissioner and from us, and we will make ours more severe."

While Strock said he will suspend his players regardless of what the league commissioner says, Coker had a different approach.

"I wont (suspend players), but the ACC may," Coker said.

The two teams, located just 10 miles apart, were in a tight battle in the first half as UM led just 7-0 at halftime as they scored with less than two minutes left on Lance Leggett's first of two touchdown receptions.

Leggett had seven catches in the game for 77 yards and two touchdowns for Miami. Wright completed 14 of 22 passes for 117 yards and three touchdowns. Chris Zellner, James Bryant, and Derron Thomas also scored touchdowns for Miami.

Christopher Stock can be reached at

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