WITH DUKE IN TOWN, LET'S TALK HOOPS
As I get ready to watch Miami host fifth-ranked Duke in about 5 minutes, here are a few things on my mind:
- The Canes' men's basketball team has not beaten a top-5 team since its 73-71 win at No. 2 U-Conn in 1999. In fact, Miami is 2-23 all-time against top-5 teams. Its only other win in that situation came on the Canes' first try against a heavyweight. The opponent? Duke, 71-69, in 1962.
- Forward Devin Ebanks, one of the top-ranked hoop recruits in the Class of 2008, may try to get out of signing with Indiana if coach Kelvin Sampson is fired. Sampson is in hot water over recruiting practices that have drawn the NCAA's ire. Miami, meanwhile, was in Ebanks' top three, so the Canes would be interested if the kid were to get out his IU commitment. But don't count on it. This is a longshot.
- I got to see two star recruits Tuesday night - Class of 2009 shooting guard Kenny Boynton of American Heritage (29 points) and Class of 2010 point guard Brandon Knight of Pine Crest (38 points and the win). I am told that Miami is not in the hunt for either player, which is terrible news. Of the two, Knight is the bigger get. He is ranked the No. 2 sophomore in the nation and plays a position the Canes need filled with a star player.
- Of course, the Canes need a point guard immediately, as in the 2008 season. The Canes have one scholarship left to award in April of this year. They would give it to Ebanks if he became available. But failing that, look for the Canes to get a point guard, perhaps from a junior college.
- There is one point guard still avaiable who would turn around Miami's program were here to sign with the Hurricanes in April. He is 6-5, 205-pound Pennsylvania star Tyreke Evans, who has NBA game. Louisville and Villanova are in the lead for his services. Also in the running are Memphis, Texas, U-Conn and Seton Hall. The Canes are not in the mix