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3 Keys to Victory: Miami at Duke

Can the Hurricanes pull off the monumental upset and get a signature win at Cameron tonight?

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

I know what you are thinking......

Key 1: Hope that Duke overlooks UM with #6 Louisville on deck this weekend.

Key 2: Maybe the entire Blue Devils team gets the stomach flu.

Key 3: All of the freshmen on Coach K's squad play like freshmen instead of future lottery picks.

But seriously 'Canes fans, Coach L is 2-2 against Duke since taking over as Head Coach at Miami.  And there are a few realistic possibilities for Miami to get the win tonight.

Vegas does list the Blue Devils as about 15 point favorites.

So this would be a pretty big shocker, especially with Duke coming off of a humbling 87-75 loss this past weekend Vs NC State and being at home. But again it is not impossible.

Here are my three keys to a Miami Hurricanes upset:

#1 Hit at least 10 three pointers -  Miami has hit 9 in game twice.  They also knocked down 11 Vs Drexel way back on 11/20/14, and an incredible 14 bombs Vs Charlotte on 11/25.  So this is not out of the realm of possibility. Lately of course as UM's shot selection and ball movement have suffered, they have not been as efficient from distance. But in any College Hoops game, the great equalizer is always the 3 ball. Angel Rodriguez brought the Hurricanes back single-handed Vs UF with some incredible shooting earlier this year, but the guy I think needs to get hot and knock down 5 or so on his own is Deandre Burnett.  When on, Burnett scores effortlessly, and can make both contested and uncontested triples.  If he gets hot Miami is a whole other animal for Duke to deal with.

#2 Stay out of foul trouble early -  This means you Tonye Jekiri.  TJ is the only guy on the team with any hope whatsoever of keeping Duke's incredible freshman big man Jahlil Okafor (19.2ppg 9.2rpg 68% from the floor) from dominating the paint. The big fella is going to put some points on the board. But where he can really hurt the Hurricanes is by racking up the fouls and forcing Jekiri to the bench, and getting the Devils in the bonus early. If Duke is parading to the charity stripe all night, UM hasn't got a shot.

#3 Win the turnover battle - Sounds like a key to the gridiron, but on the hardwood it is just as important, especially Vs a team like Duke. The Devils have advantages in the half court, but if you are sloppy with the ball and let Tyus Jones (5.1 apg) and Quinn Cook (14.3 ppg 3apg) get out and run, you are in serious trouble. Justise Winslow loves to get out on the open court and finish as well. Rodriguez, Manu Lecomte, and Miami's guards need to be heady and take care of the basketball tonight. Anything under 10 turnovers would give them a chance.  More than that and good night Irene.

Well there you have it Hurricanes fans.  If Deandre Burnett gets hot from deep, Tonye Jekiri plays smart defense, and UM's PGs limit the turnovers, Miami has a chance at a signature win.  With Coach Larranaga and his staff leading the way, anything is possible.

Enjoy the game tonight (9PM ESPN2).