Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Miami Hurricanes' brush off No. 1 NCAA snub

Jim Larranaga hugs Kenny Kadji after the win over UNC.


Jim Larranaga hugs Kenny Kadji after the win over UNC.

GREENSBORO, N.C. — From the packed and rowdy hotel suite, Jim Larranaga quietly stood up with a quick message.

His Miami players were cheering the No. 2 NCAA Tournament seed, but his face was straight.

"We have a lot of work to do," he said while stepping into the quiet hallway.

The surreal Sunday had taken another turn when the Hurricanes were paired with Pacific in Friday's NCAA second-round game in Austin, Texas. Earlier, they celebrated the school's first ACC title with a win over North Carolina that set up an unprecedented seeding.

Never before had an ACC regular-season and tournament champion landed anything but a No. 1. But NCAA selection committee chairman Mike Bobinski said Gonzaga ended up "just ahead of them," on the CBS broadcast.

Miami senior Kenny Kadji was tempered in his celebration of the seeding. Other teammates appeared disappointed when the brackets filled out.

"We've been the underdogs all year, all season and it worked out well for us," Kadji said. "I wouldn't call it disrespect, but I guess we'll take it like that."

The Hurricanes will open against Big West champion Pacific, which has played in the NCAA Tournament eight times but last appeared in 2006.

Drawing the Friday-Sunday bracket was huge, Larranaga said, considering the brutal three games it took to claim the ACC title. That, he said, was more important than landing a No. 1 seed.

"I couldn't care less," he said. "The (NCAA selection) committee has a very challenging job to figure out who should be the No. 1 seeds and where they should play. I'm more happy that we play on Friday than about any seeding."

The No. 2 seeding matches that of UM's 1998-99 team that was eliminated in the second round by Purdue.

The Hurricanes, making their first NCAA appearance since 2008, seemed a contender for one of the four top seeds awarded Sunday, but those went to Louisville, Kansas, Indiana and Gonzaga.

A team that had impressed Tar Heels coach Roy Williams so much that he waited outside Miami's locker room after Sunday's game to congratulate players and coaches wasn't quite considered top seed-worthy.

"We don't take that as any disrespect at all," senior center Julian Gamble said. "I mean we're a two-seed, which is one of the top eight teams in the country. It's a lot of respect, in that aspect."


Hed goes here

Type goes here

Miami Hurricanes' brush off No. 1 NCAA snub 03/17/13 [Last modified: Monday, March 18, 2013 1:13pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Longest home run at Trop and Erasmo Ramirez's pitching doom Rays (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Kevin Kiermaier returned. The problem was, so did Erasmo Ramirez.

    Seattle Mariners first baseman Yonder Alonso (10) scores on the double by Seattle Mariners designated hitter Nelson Cruz (23) in the first inning of the game between the Seattle Mariners and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Friday, August 18, 2017.
  2. Rays journal: Kevin Kiermaier returns, Mallex Smith sent to Triple A

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — It didn't take CF Kevin Kiermaier long to make his presence felt during his return Friday to the Rays lineup. Kiermaier pretended to have Mariners DH Nelson Cruz's first-inning line drive lined up even as the ball went past him to his right and to the wall.

    Tampa Bay Rays center fielder Kevin Kiermaier (39) flies out in the first inning of the game between the Seattle Mariners and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Friday, August 18, 2017.
  3. Rays vs. Mariners, 6:10 p.m. Saturday, Tropicana Field

    The Heater

    Tonight: vs. Mariners

    6:10, Tropicana Field

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun; 620-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)

    This is a 2017 photo of Jake Odorizzi of the Tampa Bay Rays baseball team. This image reflects the 2017 active roster as of Saturday, Feb. 18, 2017 when this image was taken. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
  4. Bucs journal: Starting defense disappointed holding Jags to 1 rushing yard


    JACKSONVILLE — The Bucs' starting defense held the Jaguars to a total of 1 rushing yard on seven carries in the first half of Thursday's 12-8 preseason win.

    And its members were disappointed.

    Jacksonville Jaguars running back T.J. Yeldon (24) is thrown for a 1-yard loss as he is stopped by Tampa Bay Buccaneers linebacker Lavonte David (54) and defensive end Robert Ayers (91) during the first half of an NFL preseason football game, Thursday, Aug. 17, 2017, in Jacksonville, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux) JVS102
  5. Jameis Winston's hardest lesson: He can't always save the day


    TAMPA — Ever wonder what in the world goes through Jameis Winston's mind when he tries to fit the ball in a keyhole as he is being dragged to the turf like he was during Thursday night's 12-8 preseason win over the Jaguars?

    Jameis Winston, left, tries to hang on to the ball as Jaguars defensive end Dante Fowler tries to strip it from him.