The Game: Miami vs Western Carolina, 11/11/16 at 7 PM , Watsco Center, Coral Gables, FL.
The 2016-17 Hurricanes: Miami opens the 2016-17 regular season with 10 scholarship players, led by a trio of captains in seniors Davon Reed and Kamari Murphy, along with junior Ja’Quan Newton. Sophomores Anthony Lawrence and Ebuka Izundu also return for the Hurricanes. This season, a group of five newcomers comprising Miami’s top recruiting class in program history will don a UM jersey for the first time. The Canes’ coaching staff reeled in four freshmen in McDonald’s All-American Dewan Huell, Jordan Brand Classic All-American Bruce Brown, Australian standout Dejan “DJ” Vasiljevic and Rodney Miller from national powerhouse Oak Hill Academy (Va.). Redshirt junior Rashad Muhammad also joins the class after sitting out a season ago due to transferring from San Jose State. The four-man group has been named one of the top 2016 classes in the country, with a No. 9 ranking from 247Sports, No. 10 from Scout, No. 13 from ESPN and No. 13 from Rivals.
Miami Picked Ninth in ACC Preseason Poll: Miami was predicted to finish ninth out of 15 teams in the Atlantic Coast Conference this season, as announced by the league at the 55th annual Operation Basketball. Duke was picked to win the ACC, followed by North Carolina, Virginia and Louisville.
Miami Earning Votes in Both National Polls: Miami is garnering votes in both the AP (48) and the USA TODAY Coaches (11) preseason polls. The Canes are six places out of the Top 25 in the AP poll and four positions out in the USA Today poll.
Selling Out the Watsco Center: In just his fifth season in Coral Gables, Jim Larrañaga and Miami SOLD OUT the season ticket allotment for all home games last year at the Watsco Center. It was the first time in Miami athletics history a team sold out their season. And now, the arena is sold out in back-to-back seasons. For two straight years, fans have bought over 5,500 season tickets, more than doubling the total number of season tickets sold in Larrañaga’s first season in Coral Gables. When Coach L began his reign in Miami, fans bought 2,251 season tickets for the 2011-12 campaign. After a record-breaking season on the court in 2012-13, season tickets peaked at 3,674 for 2013-14, prior to this year’s 5,750 mark.
Miami Reloads with Five Newcomers: The Hurricanes will have five new players wearing Miami uniforms this season, including four freshmen and one junior transfer. Of the five newcomers, Dewan Huell (Miami Norland) and Bruce Brown (Vermont Academy) are high school All-Americans, DJ Vasiljevic (Australia) has FIBA and national team experience, Rodney Miller attended Oak Hill Academy (Va.) and junior Rashad Muhammad was the leading scorer at San Jose State two seasons ago.
Canes Recruit Top-15 Class for 2016-17:In the fall of 2015, Miami signed one of the top 15 recruiting classes in the country, with 247Sports ranking the class No. 9, Scout at No. 10, ESPN at No. 13 and Rivals at No. 13. The 2016 class rankings topped Miami’s best mark from 2005, when the Canes signed four four-star recruits – Jimmy Graham, Brian Asbury, Adrian Thomas and Denis Clemente – in a class that was ranked No. 12 in the nation by Scout.
Exceeding Expectations: In the past five years, Coach Jim Larrañaga’s Canes have exceeded preseason expectations every campaign. Larrañaga is the only coach in the ACC to finish above the preseason poll predictions every season, and has the largest margin of surpassing those expectations.
Larrañaga One of the Best: Among active coaches, Jim Larrañaga is the 11th-winningest coach in the country at major schools with 588 victories, and is ranked No. 42 on the list of all-time winningest coaches at major schools. Among the seven ACC coaches with five-plus years in the league, in their first five years at their current school, Coach L is second in overall wins (118), overall winning percentage (.674), ACC victories (54), winning percentage in ACC games only (.614). Among all-time ACC coaches (includes only seasons coaching at ACC schools during years as ACC member), Coach L is ranked No. 25 all-time in ACC wins and No. 29 all-time in overall wins, in just five years in the league. He is ninth all-time in winning percentage in ACC games only (.614).