“I was very disappointed in the fact the administration would allow a scumbag like that walking the hallways,” Sileo said of Nevin Shapiro, the booster who is at the middle of the scandal. “I want to know how he got on the football field. Someone has to fall.”
Sileo played for the Hurricanes during part of their glory years, in the mid-80s, before any of the alleged wrongdoing took place. He was part of a heralded defensive line that included future NFL star Jerome Brown, Danny Stubbs and Bill Hawkins. He was selected in the third round, as the 59th pick, in the 1987 NFL Supplemental Draft by Tampa Bay, played a season with the team, then later got into preseason games with Detroit and Dallas before retiring.
Sileo started his college career at Maryland. Before that, he was a star player at Stamford Catholic, which is now Trinity Catholic, graduating in 1982.
“That was such a great time for me. I got to play high school ball with Tony Brown,” recalled Sileo, referring to his teammate who went on to play at the University of Pittsburgh and for the Buffalo Bills, and lost a long battle with cancer last summer. “I was All-City three times. That’s something I am really proud of.”
Sileo has a forum for expressing what is always a strong opinion about Miami and other sports news: He has a highly-rated morning talk show on WDAE in Tampa, the flagship station for the Buccaneers. He said his alma mater has been the main topic of conversation since the investigation by Yahoo! Sports came out last week. He said he has kept strong ties to the Miami program and claimed that he speaks to its first-year coach, Al Golden, every day.
“This has been massive because obviously everyone knows how close I am with that place,” Sileo said. “People want information on the program and they know they can get it from me. There’s my family, my daughter and wife, and then there’s my football family. The University of Miami has meant everything to me. It really has.”
Sileo has an interesting background, one he does not hide from. He stayed at Maryland for a year, then was thrown out of school for throwing a person out of a one-story window. Sileo has also admitted to using anabolic steroids while in the NFL — he told his story years ago during a special series in the Stamford Advocate.
Sileo went to the University of Cincinnati for a summer to get his grades up, and then had his football career saved by Miami coach Jimmy Johnson.
“If it wasn’t for Jimmy, I don’t know what would have happened,” Sileo said. “He threw me a lifeline.”
Sileo said he won’t get any satisfaction until anyone proved to be involved in wrongdoing at Miami is punished.
And he said Stamford will always remain close to his heart.
“My aunt still lives there and I still come back once a year during the winter time,” Sileo said. “I still go to Bobby Valentine’s restaurant and hang out. I love Stamford.”