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Men’s Basketball Preview: Miami vs Clemson

The Hurricanes look to continue to stay hot at home and inch closer to an NCAA tournament bid

NCAA Basketball: Florida Atlantic at Miami Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Miami’s remaining schedule is daunting.

Over the next two weeks they play at #14 Virginia, vs #12 Duke, at Virginia Tech and at #17 Florida State. Going 2-2 in the next couple weeks would be considered a nice finish to the year and add at least one big win to the 'ol resume.

And the schedule ahead is exactly why today’s game is so important.

The ‘Canes need to win.

They’re facing a Clemson team near the bottom of the ACC with just four conference wins. But the Tigers are in the Tournament field right now according to Joe Lunardi and a win on the road today would be huge for their case going forward.

Over the last couple weeks Clesmon lost by 48 at FSU, lost at the buzzer to Syracuse, had a chance to win at the buzzer at Duke but failed, and most recently beat Wake Forest 95-83.

So while this Clemson team is mightily inconsistent and hasn’t done a whole lot of winning, they tend to stay in games until the end.

Miami is 12-2 at the Watsco Center this year (and 25-2 going back to last season) with both losses coming to ranked opponents. But the ‘Canes will be shorthanded once again as Ja’Quan Newton will miss his second game in a row do to suspension.

The Hurricanes also lost Ebuka Izundu for nearly the entire second half earlier this week vs Georgia Tech, but he is expected to be a go today.

Clemson has really struggled to score on the road in ACC play, and I expect Miami to come out with a lot of energy on defense. The question will be can they maintain their energy level for the second half?

We’ve seen Miami struggle down the stretch numerous times in games this year and now playing their second game in four days with a shorthanded roster...hopefully Coach L will have these guys ready to play a full 40 minutes.

Prediction:

Davon Reed puts in another great performance with over 20 points, going tit-for-tat for Jaron Blossomgame of Clemson who puts up close to 20 himself.

Kamari Murphy and Izundu control the glass against a relatively shorter Clemson team and Miami benefits from an advantage in second chance points.

A shallow roster allows Clemson to get back in the game late, but it’s not enough to get the win.

Miami wins 68-63