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Miami Hurricanes documentary debuts Saturday on ESPN

December 11, 2009 By Carlos Miller in

In his latest film, The U, Billy Corben tells the story that needed to be told about the most dominant college football team since the 1980s, the Miami Hurricanes.

The U premiered Wednesday night inside the Lyric Theater in Overtown, one of Miami’s oldest black communities. It was Corben’s first standing ovation.

“But we stacked the cards pretty good,” he said, referring the fact that the only invitees were Hurricane fans and former players.

The Lyric Theater was a fitting location considering the team was built on the talent of black inner-city players during the heyday of the 1980s, a decade in which riots broke out in these same neighborhoods three times.

It was the most divisive decade in the city’s history, but the rise of the Miami Hurricane football team brought the community together. If only for one day out of the week.

Corben, who operates Rakontur along with producer Alfred Spellman, also directed the Cocaine Cowboys movies, which became instant cult classics.

The U will air for the first time Saturday night on ESPN at 9 p.m. eastern time, immediately after the Heisman Trophy ceremony.

The University of Miami alum also had some choice words for the university for not allowing Rakontur to interview current coach Randy Shannon or otherwise cooperating with the making of the movie.

Listen to what he says in the video below.

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Carlos Miller is a featured writer at Miami Beach 411. He also operates Photography is Not a Crime, a blog about photographer rights, New Media and First Amendment issues.

See more articles by Carlos Miller.

See more articles by Carlos Miller

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