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Courtside blog: Winthrop 76, UM 70 (F)

Checking in courtside from the BankAtlantic Center in Sunrise where the 19th-ranked Canes are set to take on Winthrop in the MetroPCS Orange Bowl Classic.

I'll be here to provide my thoughts. So, will my homeboy George Richards over at his blog -- On Frozen Pond. George covers the Panthers for us. But he knows his Canes content better than most.

Enjoy the game. It's live on FSN and on WQAM. But if you want to vent or shake your pom-poms during the game, I invite you to do it here.

By the way, I just remembered my favorite George Richards (G-Man) moment of all time during the national anthem. 2004 Florida High School Athletic Association State Basketball Championships. National anthem ends and the PA announcer begins to talk about fans respecting the players. Its the same intro read all weekend long and by now G-Man knows it by heart. So, he shouts in his best Cartman voice: RESPECT MY AUTHORITY! The entire gym goes dead quiet and stares at two silly Herald reporters who are red-faced. That's G-Man.

FIRST HALF...
- It's 7-7 after the first break with 15:27 left in the half. Winthrop looks like its frustrating UM's offense a little bit. Eagles are putting some extra pressure on the ball and forcing UM to make tough passes. Most teams come out respecting UM's inside play a little more. It will be interesting to see if UM comes out of this time out trying to push it inside and take advantage of those Winthrop players double-teamming the point.
- The Canes are struggling in their transition defense. Winthrop is really pushing the ball up the floor and Miami is struggling to get back.
- Here's the story of the first half in a nutshell: UM, the balanced undefeated team, has 10 points from Anthony King and five from Jack McClinton. That's why the Cares are losing.
- And just like that, UM puts together a 14-2 run in less than five minutes to retake the lead.
- The Canes close out the half on a 10-2 run to go up five at the break.

SECOND HALF...
- Coach Frank Haith said this would be like an NCAA tournament game and so far he is right. Winthrop's 12-0 run has given the Eagles a 42-40 lead with 12:51 left to play. Miami has fallen asleep offensively again. The Canes had a 40-30 lead with 17:17 left and then got comfortable. UM is taking too many jumpers again.
- Jack McClinton has turned up his intensity. Unfortunately, his teammates aren't matching it at this point.
- It's 62-57 Wintrhop with 3:48 to play. Miami has been getting killed with the three-point shot and they aren't rebounding as well as they were in the first half. Great game though.

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