- Faith & Family
The incredible season for the University of Miami’s men basketball team continues its magic carpet ride in the NCAA tournament beginning this week. Not long ago, Canes fans spent selection last Sunday wishing and hoping, knowing deep down their team probably hadn’t done enough to warrant an invite to the March Madness tournament. The Canes got invited only once in the last 10 years. However, this year the debate was not if Miami would get in but how high they would be seeded. After winning the school’s first conference title with an 87-77 victory over a game North Carolina squad in a great Atlantic Coast Conference [ACC] championship last Sunday, the Canes earned a No. 2 seeding heading into the tournament. Every team that previously had won the ACC regular-season title outright and the ACC tournament had earned a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament. Fans were up in arms about this but Coach Jim Larranaga has encouraged his squad to embrace the moment, enjoy this run and have fun while doing it. Many feel that the Canes can make a deep run in the tournament with player-of-the-year candidate Shane Larkin leading the way. The backcourt combo of Larkin and Durand Scott, the versatility of forward Kenny Kadji and big man Julian Gamble’s tenacity may cause a real migraine for opposing teams in this year’s tournament. Miami (27-6) opens its run against Pacific (22-12), the automatic qualifier from the Big West conference. After struggling down the stretch the Canes appear to have regained their groove just in time. They are lethal offensively and can throttle a team on defense. With no clear cut favorite in this year’s tournament, and the way the Canes looked in the ACC title game, this team is primed for a run to win it all.
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