MIAMI, Florida - As the Tulsa Hurricane prepares for Monday's bowl game, Sunday was also a special day for two players.

It had all the look of a graduation, putting on the garb, the pomp and circumstance. 

But, it wasn't at the Reynolds Center. The 138th commencement ceremony had two more students to graduate - running back James Flanders and quarterback Ryan Rubley made the walk with a rowdy crowd of teammates. They listened to an abbreviated commencement speech, turned the tassel and earn their degrees - in South Beach.

"Oh yeah, this is better than Tulsa, we're in Miami! I didn't know they did anything like this. They flew down here and did this for us, but getting the degree is the main thing, especially from TU," Flanders said. 

Rubley was just as surprised as Flanders. 

"I didn't know they were going to do this. They kind of kept it a secret they just told us to bring a cap and gown and I didn't know what to expect, but wow, this is insane," Rubley said. 

There may have been push late to do the commencement outside, on a lovely beach in South Beach, but they kept it inside.  But the 138 1/2 commencement went on without a hitch

"The coaches to the players to the trustees to the administration, when this came up, everyone was like, 'yes, let's do it!'" said 
President Dr. Gerard Clancy.

"For them to put on something like this, that's something that's so unique and so special that they'll never forget that for the rest of their life," said Coach Philip Montgomery.

Not many can say they took pictures post-graduation with a beach as the back drop, but it certainly rates as the best 'half' graduation in Tulsa history.