The Miami Hurricanes, under the direction of UMSHoF member Coach Andy Gustafson, SHOCKED the college football world by defeating the Number One ranked Purdue Boilermakers, 20-14, in front of 32,000 fans in West Lafayette, Indiana ! The Canes upset the team that one week earlier, defeated Notre Dame to stop their 39 game winning streak...themselves shocking the college football world and rising to the #1 ranking !
When the Hurricanes returned to Miami, over 100,000 Miamians clogged LeJeune road...and all other directions into the airport, to greet their returning heroes, creating what was called.."The World's Biggest Traffic Jam " !
The Canes would be ranked #8 the following week, the first time Miami entered the Top Ten in school history ! They would end the regular season as the school's first undefeated team...9-0-1...defeating Florida, Iowa and Missouri along the way, earning an Orange Bowl Classic berth, where they lost to Clemson. The team was led by Miami's FIRST All American and UMSHoF member Al Carapella, along with UMSHoF members Frank Smith, Jim Dooley and Harry "Scooter" Mallios !
But on this day, Sixty-Five years ago...the Miami Hurricanes SHOCKED the college football world...October 14, 1950 !!!
The following is from HurricaneWarriors.com ...
October 14th, 1950, vs. #1 Purdue in West Lafayette, Indiana -
The Hurricanes (2-0, having defeated non-powers The Citadel and Villanova) entered the most important game in the history of Miami Football against the top-rated Boilermakers, who the week before had snapped Notre Dame's thirty-nine-game winning streak. Purdue was being touted everywhere as a new gridiron powerhouse, and they had shutout Miami 14-0 the previous year. Still, every sports periodical was covering this game, and the local papers, national press, and wire-services were all represented because, while UM was an huge underdog, they were perceived as a program on the rise after going 6-3 in ‘49. DE Walt Chwalik tipped a pass that DT Joe Lyden intercepted, then rumbling 53 yards for the 1st Canes touchdown. Halfback Frank Smith then scored on runs of 18 and 50 yards as previously relatively unheralded Miami won 20-14 securing a stunning upset of #1 Purdue.
Attempting to get to the Miami Airport to welcome the team home, students, alumni and other locals were joined by UM fans driving in from the outlying parts of Florida and even from out-of-state. It was estimated that 100,000 people were at the airport; Miami’s only had a population of 500,000 at the time. An estimated 30,000 fans then overran the fences and stormed past the posted guards, invading the runway as the team plane was landing. No one ended up seriously hurt, but this possible disaster led to more national publicity for the school, which was only entering its 5th season at the University (now Div. 1) level in 1950. A 3-day celebration followed on and around campus. This victory was really huge for the program and certainly did more than any other single game to place Miami Football on the national college football map.
Frank Smith, from Tuckahoe (Westchester County, north of Yonkers), New York, was recruited along with his high school backfield teammate, Al Carapella, to attend Miami so both could play football and baseball at UM. Carapella was converted from FB to T, and went on to become UM’s 1st All-American in ’50. Al also played in this game with Purdue. Al Carapella then went on to star with the San Francisco 49ers. Frank Smith, who had to sit out the 1949 season with injuries, also had an outstanding career at UM, leading the Canes in rushing once and scoring twice. Along with scoring 21 TD’s over 1950 & 1951, Smith also threw the longest halfback-option pass in UM history – an 81-yard scoring toss to Al Hudson. Frank Smith’s younger brother, Bill Smith, later played halfback for the Canes.