Yet, even though the Hurricanes lost the game they won some serious respect from the Atlantic Coast Conference by advancing to the quarterfinal game and giving the Blue Devils all they could handle for the entire 40 minutes.
Along the way Miami beat #5 seed Wake Forest 83-62 and #4 seed Virginia Tech 70-65. But maybe more importantly, the Hurricanes finally found an identity on offense and defense with 2009 leading scorer and graduating Senior Dwayne Collins on the bench due to injury.
Without Collins in the game, the Hurricanes turned to RS freshman Reggie Johnson to man the middle. And oh what a MAN Johnson turned out to be!
Big Reggie defended the paint like a grizzly guarding her young cubs. His relentless rebounding, fierce shot blocking and general intimidation of the opposing teams biggest and best players was amazing to watch from such a young and inexperienced player.
With a solid supporting cast of ACC All-Rookie team guard Durand Scott, G Malcome Grant and the high flying and athletic F DeQuan Jones this team went further than anyone expected them to. The two huge victories in the ACC tourney went a long way to restoring Faith in Haith in UM fans for next season.
And from where we stand, looking forward to next year never looked so good for Hurricane hoops.