The Miami Hurricanes basketball program was quiet during the first few weeks of the transfer portal. They weren’t tied to any of the bigger names who were moving teams in mid to late April. I wasn’t shocked, more mildly surprised. At this point, I have complete faith in Coach Larrañaga and his staff to make the right decisions for the roster and program as a whole.
April 11, 2023: Florida State wing Matthew Cleveland enters the transfer portal. My eyebrows raised when I saw this. I wasn’t sure why he was thinking about leaving FSU, I don’t know now, and I don’t care. Cleveland just seemed like a player Coach L would pursue, especially after losing Isaiah Wong and Jordan Miller.
April 27, 2023: Cleveland finishes his visits with Miami, Auburn, and Missouri. He says he plans on making his decision in a couple weeks. I felt confident at this point. I’m not sure why, but I just did. Auburn and Missouri are both SEC programs with momentum right now. That said, Cleveland just felt like a perfect fit for next season’s Hurricanes squad.
May 7, 2023: Matthew Cleveland commits to the Miami Hurricanes. And there was much rejoicing. Coach L does it again, bringing in an impact player to replace some of the scoring and playmaking lost with Wong and Miller.
With Coach L’s recent track record with transfers, how can I not think this will work out exceedingly well? Cleveland seems to be pumped to join The U, just like Norchad Omier and Nijel Pack last season. That excitement should help these guys gel in offseason workouts.
Miami’s projected ‘23-24 lineup:— CBB Content (@CBBcontent) May 7, 2023
G Nigel Pack⁰G Bensley Joseph⁰G Wooga Poplar⁰F Matthew Cleveland ⁰C Norchad Omier
⁰Projected Bench: AJ Casey, Christian Watson, Jakai Robinson, Kyshawn George, Michael Nwoko
Where would you rank them? pic.twitter.com/EdgYnAJeqM
Since Cleveland’s commitment, I’ve seen a few people write that Miami needs another impact player from the transfer portal before the season. It’s not wrong to say that. I’m not positive it’s correct. I am very interested to see how much improvement Coach L and his staff get out of their young guys this offseason. If AJ Casey and Christian Watson both take a leap over the summer, Miami has a deep squad with some size. Size they didn’t have last year. And we can’t forget Wooga Poplar. He’s only going to get better.
Now I’m thinking about what Duke and UNC did in the transfer portal and recruiting. Hey Coach Larrañaga! Please go get another dude! Thanks!
Worst case, Miami poached FSU’s best basketball player. The Canes definitely have more juice right now between the two Florida ACC schools. It’s been a long time since I’ve been able to say that. Long live Coach L and his transfer portal prowess.