The Miami Hurricanes Men's Basketball Team played their only exhibition game prior to the start of the 2015-16 season tonight Vs D2 Dowling.
The 'Canes has no trouble taking care of a smaller Golden Lions squad in a 91-40 victory.
Sheldon McClellan led the way with 18 points and Ja'Quan Newton poured in 13.
Interestingly enough it was senior Ivan Cruz Uceda starting at PF ahead of Oklahoma State transfer Kamari Murphy.
And ICU (10 points) got the scoring started quickly with a 3 ball that was true from the top of the key on UM's opening possession. .
Uceda really looks miles better than last season. His body now chiseled, and he appears to be moving much better this year.
Miami's other starting big, Tonye Jekiri was the real focal point of the offense early on.
He scored down low, and when the D collapsed around him, he found wide open shooters on multiple occasions.
The team as a whole was very sharp from the onset..
At the first TV Timeout it was 16-3 UM.
In fact, the 'Canes never trailed in this contest, and led 49-15 at the half.
It was a dominant performance (albeit against a very over matched opponent) and hopefully just a preview of a big season to come.
Some other observations:
- McClellan and Jekiri (9 points, 10 boards, 3 assists) are already in mid season form. McClellan's jumper was smooth and he's a beast in transition. TJ moves incredibly well on D, and his offensive game is evolving rapidly. Both players could be ALL-ACC type performers and perhaps NBA draft picks.
- Newton is going to score a lot more this season. His outside shot looks a lot better and he is still very strong taking the ball to the hoops. Very confident player.
- This team is going to take a ton of threes. Uceda obviously has the green light. Angel Rodriguez took a few quick ones too, but at least they were not off the dribble.
- UM went a little 1-2-2 full court press and Amp Lawrence and Murphy looked really fast chasing the ball. This will be something to watch for when the competition "amps" up. But it looked very good tonight.
- Murphy (14 points, 11 rebounds) is a freak of nature. He had an early block, a two handed stuff in transition way above the rim in the first half, and just looks extraordinarily fast and athletic. He's certainly going to be a weapon on defense/inside all season long.
- 6'9 Freshman Ebuka Izundu is long, but raw. Several times the first year player looked a little out of sorts establishing position. He did have a nice finish in an alley hoop in the second half. You can see he has the length and athleticism to develop into a nice player though.
The "Canes open the regular season next Friday 11/13 Vs UT-Rio Grande at the Bank United Center (7 PM EST) on ESPN3.