Final Four!

Nobody saw that coming.

UConn up next.

When I first started attending Miami, my family lived in Connecticut. Moved away after my first year at UM.

I didn’t think Miami would get past Houston or Texas. Even Indiana and Drake seemed risky. Texas has a very strong team.

I checked the score earlier this evening and Miami was down about 12? in the second half so I figured that was that. Checked the score again after dinner and lo and behold … they won.

Congrats to Coach L on his 2nd Final Four, the first was with George Mason? some years back.
First Final Four in Miami history. They didn’t even make it this far when they had Rick Barry.

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Wow… I had Miami losing to Houston (my eventual tournament winner) in the Sweet 16 in my bracket so I am shocked to see them make it to the Elite 8, and now the Final 4!!

After the Houston win, I felt pretty good about the Texas game.

UConn is going to be a REALLY tough out… Right now, my betting brain says UConn is going to win the tournament… But hey, I did not expect the 'Canes to beat Houston either,

Go 'Canes!

PS It’s a shame the women could not follow suit with a Final 4 spot, but man, awesome to be in the Elite 8 first time ever!

Miami doesn’t even have a legit center outside of a toothpick 6-11 freshman who doesn’t seem to play much.

They have a power forward playing center. Miami is a guard heavy team with some good forwards thrown in. Ruiz needs to buy them some dominant centers.

I’m not expecting them to go the the finals or win it all but it would be great if they did.

Miami was able to come back because they stopped shooting 3’s and drove the basket, frequently going to the foul line while occasionally scoring and shooting a foul shot. Miller was fabulous, and Wong showed why he was named AAC Player of the year.

Connecticut is the tallest team in the tournament, and their two big guys are talented to go along with three very talented guards. To beat Connecticut, Miami needs to follow the same pathway to victory as they did against Texas. In the first half, Miami missed on four lay ups that should have been automatic points. Miami will be blown away if UCONN keeps them out of the paint. Miami needs to refrain from going 3 pt happy and play one on one into the paint. Wong and Miller drive to the basket better than anybody playing for UCONN. Omier needs to remain in the game and not foul out. Creighton lost their game today which they should have won; they lost by dint of miserable 3 point shooting. Alabama lost earlier in the tournament for the same reason.

I didn’t expect Miami to win against Houston or Texas. I did not expect them to get this far. Regardless what happens, this team deserves plaudit being Miami’s first team to make the Final Four.

I attended UM during the Rick Barry era. Rick still holds the scoring record at UM but was not the team’s leading scorer for two of his years at Miami. In 1961-63, Miami’s leading scorer was Mike McKoy, the first 7 foot center in Indiana prep history. McKoy left UM in 1963, and the succeeding year Barry averaged over 30 point a game. McCoy subsequently played one year in the pros after which he returned to Indiana. In the early Sixties, Miami played in its first NCAA tournament, but they were shellacked in a first game loss. Miami played its basketball games in the Miami Beach Convention Hall. Sometimes, fewer than 100 fans attended the games.

OK but they beat Houston because they lit em on fire from 3…And they hardly shot 3s in any part of the game vs. Texas

Awesome performance by Miami and Larranaga

Miami was 2-8 (25%) from 3-pt range in the Texas game. As @bikki228 mentioned, Miami was driving the ball in the paint. They either were making higher percentage shots, or getting fouled and taking free throws. The stats of the game show that. Texas committed 23 fouls, and Miami took advantage of the freebies shooting 28-32 (87.5%).

Brilliant strategy from Larranaga.

Congratulations. Incredible game. As primarily a Texas fan, that hurt, but was cool to see Miami make it

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The shots didn’t drop for the Hurricanes in their game against UCONN. Nevertheless, this team advanced farther than any UM team in history in the NCAA tournament. Early in the game, Miami rallied back, and it appeared that the Canes had a chance against the taller, deeper UCONN Huskies, but UCONN’s defense stiffened and there was little doubt that the strong Husky team would prevail.

It’s a shame FAU faltered during the last minutes off their game after leading in the contest nearly the entire game. FAU’s star Davis, the hero of prior games, and a bad game against San Diego and missed on a crucial drive to the bucket with under a minute to go in the game. Had Davis made the basket, FAU would likely have won the game.

In the women’s tournament, Caitlan Clark put on an exhibition that reminded pundits of Steph Curry. South Carolina, unbeaten the entire season, had no answer for Clark. They tried using their bigs to keep her out of the paint, and that strategy failed. Then they tried moving their taller players outside, and Clark foiled that strategy as well with pick and roll feeds to her center and displaying basketball wizardry with her deft handling of the ball, often faking out the taller Carolina women as she drove to the hoop… Of all the basketball games played this tournament season, that game was my favorite. No one thought South Carolina could be beaten. It reminded me of the great game Villanova played against the Patrick Ewing led Georgetown team. Villanova was not to be denied nor were the Hawkeyes last night.

Next year, most of this year’s team returns. Unfortunately, Jordan Miller’s eligibility has run out, and he will not be on the team. What Miami lacks is height. If Miami had another big guy to go with Omier, say someone like that Sanogo kid playing for Connecticut, the Hurricanes could make another run next year. Let’s hope Coach L can find another big guy, one who can run the court, block shots and help Norchard under the basket.

Shooting 32.9% from the floor (27 for 82) isn’t going to get it done against any team let alone a very good team like UCONN. A disappointing end to a great season. Coach L intimated they were simply overwhelmed by being on the big stage and played badly as a result.

I was hoping they would make it to the finals, play a relatively weak opponent and win it all. Oh well.

I think Wong is expected to turn pro so both he and Miller are gone.

Coach L can hit the transfers hard to fill in the gaps. Making the final 8 or better two years in a row has given Miami great visibility. Ruiz’s checkbook doesn’t hurt either.

The U could really use Hunter Dickinson, the center from Michigan who entered the portal. Big man , averaged 18 points per game.

Unfortunately, it looks Arkansa, Kentucky, or Maryland for Dickinson. We really could use a good big man.