Revenge On The Mind: #5 Miami At #3 Duke
- CoachingMiami bounced back from its first ACC loss—a stunning setback against Wake Forest—and beat Virginia Tech on Wednesday. A win Saturday would give Miami its first conference title.Duke has a tough road game against Virginia on Thursday night, then gets a shot at revenge against Miami. Cameron will certainly be rocking and the Blue Devils should be plenty motivated.
- OffenseThe Hurricanes’ offense got back on track Wednesday; they shot 50 percent and drained eight threes. Sophomore Shane Larkin is one of the most exciting point guards in the country.The Blue Devils are third in the country in three-point percentage. They don’t turn the ball over and play well together. But concerns about whether Ryan Kelly will return hang over this team.
- DefenseMiami, statistically, is one of the best defensive teams in the country. The ’Canes are tops in the ACC in defensive efficiency; they clean up on the glass.Like last year’s Duke team, this squad doesn’t defend like Coach K’s teams usually do. Miami got whatever it wanted in the first match-up.
- Bench DepthMiami has a solid seven-man rotation. Reggie Johnson, 6’10 and nearly 300 pounds, comes off the bench and leads the team in rebounds.Tyler Thornton gives Duke some depth in the backcourt and freshman Amile Jefferson scored 14 in 21 minutes last Sunday against Boston College.
Miami manhandled Duke, 90-63, on Jan. 3, in one of Duke’s worst performances in the Coach K era. But Duke hasn’t lost at home this season and Miami has struggled on the road (in addition to the loss to Wake, there have been several narrow escapes against lower-tier ACC teams). Duke has the edge at Cameron. -Andrew Kahn, College Football Contributor