Checking in from Charlotte Bobcats Arena where the Canes will try to do something it has never done -- win two games in the ACC Tournament. It's a battle between the Coach of the Year, Tech's Seth Greenberg and the runner-up, UM's Frank Haith.
Speaking of Haith, a report out of The Rock Herald in South Carolina linked him as a possible frontrunning candidate to replace the retiring Dave Odom after this season. Can't say it makes a whole lot of sense. While Haith is close with Odom, who brought him to over to South Carolina from Wake Forest, Haith only spent four weeks at South Carolina before bolting for Texas with Rick Barnes.
When I've spoken to Haith about his future at Miami, which still includes three years on his current contract, he's always talked about how much he enjoys being in the ACC. The fact the Hurricanes are bringing back the chunk of their team next season (and likely an even better team than this one that is going to make the NCAA Tournament) I highly doubt he would choose leave after putting in four years of hardwork to lay the foundation down. Still, this could be a great opportunity for him to seek a raise and I expect him to receive one. I'm sure of all the coaches at Miami new athletic director Kirby Hocutt is going to want to keep Haith around. Haith had no comment in the South Carolina article. We'll be sure to ask him about it after this afternoon's game.
By the way, I'm not sure if Joe Lunardi's brackets were updated or not (they are supposed to be on Mondays and Fridays) but he's still got UM as a 9th seed playing in the Midwest against 8th-seeded Davidson.
15:53 left, Virginia Tech 10, UM 5: Freshman Malcolm Delaney has eight early points for the Hokies, who have hit a pair of threes to put a little distance between themselves and The U early. UM has had a little trouble getting rolling here offensively. Another slow, typical start. Delaney by the way grew up with Jack McClinton in Baltimore. He text messaged McClinton last week after UM lost to FSU with: "Thanks for the Bye." Jack told me he wanted to get some revenge. So far, Delaney has been holding his own.
10:45 left, Virginia Tech 17, UM 11: McClinton converted one of the rarest plays in basketball -- the four-point play -- when he drained a three and a drew contact with 15:22 left to pull UM within 10-9. But since Jimmy Graham's hook shot with 14:22 left, Tech has gone on a 5-0 run and has received seven consecutive points from guard A.D. Vassallo.
7:51 left, Virginia Tech 21, UM 16: James Dews hit a big-three-pointer with 9:17 to turn an eight point deficit back into a five-point deficit. So far, its been the AD Vassalo show. He's got 9 points as Tech's bigger guards are scoring over UM's smaller guards. Freshman Eddie Rios has had to play a ton of minutes after Lance Hurdle drew his second foul three minutes into the game.
3:53 left, Virginia Tech 21, UM 21: While Tech has gone flat out cold, Canes have gone a 5-0 run to tie things up. James Dews hit about a 28-foot three-pointer as the shot clock was winding down before Brian Asbury hitting the tying jumper with 5:41 to go. The teams haven't been able to do much since.
1:12 left, Virginia Tech 25, UM 23: Brian Asbury made a nice play with a steal and jumper to give Miami the lead with 3:14 left. But the Canes have gone cold since. They had a missed layup by McClinton in transition that led to a open dunk downcourt for Tech which gave the Hokies the lead with 1:38 left.
15:55 left, Virginia Tech 33, UM 33: Canes fell behind by 6 and went to work. Anthony King scored on a pretty drive ot the hoop before Jimmy Graham hit one of two at the line and Jack McClinton buried a three-pointer to tie the game. Key stat of the first half was rebounds. Tech had eight offensive boards and outrebounded UM 22-13. Both teams shot the ball poorly in the first half. UM shot 33 percent. Tech shot 37.
11:33 left, Virginia Tech 38, UM 38: Brian Asbury's stickback with 11:59 left has tied this game again for the upteenth time.
7:43 left, Virginia Tech 46, UM 42: There have been 10 lead changes in this game so far. Malcolm Delaney's three-pointer with 8:37 gave the Hokies the lead again. Anthony King has played well this afternoon for the Canes and has 9 points and three boards. Problem is Miami is giving up away too many offensive rebounds and second chance points. The last two Hokies three-pointers have come after battles under the glass and offensive rebounds.
2:54 left, Virginia Tech 58, UM 44: A 17-2 Hokies run has all but ended UM's tournament run here. Canes are now going to have to wait until Selection Sunday to find out where we're going next week.