Hurricanes Back In Miami, Start Homestand Against Panthers
Jan. 14, 2002
PITTSBURGH PANTHERS (15-2, 3-1)
#24/#20 MIAMI HURRICANES (15-2, 2-2)
January 15, 2002 – 7:30 p.m. (ET)
Miami Arena (15,388) – Miami, FL
TV: Fox Sports Net Florida, Radio: WQAM (560 AM)
ON THE PANTHERS:
Pittsburgh enters its game against the Hurricanes with a record of 15-2, 3-1 in the BIG EAST, following a 56-53 home loss to Notre Dame on Saturday night.
The Panthers have been led this season by junior point guard Brandin Knight who is averaging a team-high 15.8 points per game. Knight, who also leads the team in assist (6.3 apg) and steals (1.8 spg), has either led or tied for the team leadin scoring 10 times this season.
The only other Panther averaging in double-figures is junior forward Donatas Zavackas who is scoring at a 11.7 points per game clip. His 5.3 rebounds per game average ranks second on the team sophomore Jaron Brown (5.7 rpg).
Pittsburgh enters the game as one of the top defensive teams in the country. The Panthers rank No. 1 in the nation in scoring defense holding opponents to just 55.7 points per game and eight in the nation in field goal percentage defense (.371).
Miami and Pittsburgh meet for the 31st time with the all-time series tied 15-15. The two have met 17 times in BIG EAST regular-season play with Pittsburgh holding a 9-8 advantage.
The Hurricanes have won seven of the last 11 meetings although Pittsburgh has won two straight against the Hurricanes. Miami has won five staight over Pittsburgh at Miami Arena. Pittsburgh has not defeated Miami at Miami Arena since February 1, 1994.
LAST TIME VERSUS PITTSBURGH:
AT&T BIG EAST Championship
March 7, 2001
Madison Square Garden, New York, NY
Ricardo Greer recorded 27 points and 11 rebounds to lead Pittsburgh to a 78-69 victory over Miami in the opening round of the AT&T BIG EAST Championship at Madison Square Garden in New York, NY.
Forward Donatas Zavackas and guard Brandin Knight each added 16 points for Pittsburgh. Center Dwayne Wimbley led Miami with a career-high 20 points while forward James Jones added 18 and guard Marcus Barnes 12 for the Hurricanes.
Pittsburgh opened a 37-26 lead at the half. The Panthers took advantage of Miami’s 12 first half turnovers converting them into 14 points. The Hurricanes’ two leading scorers, John Salmons and Darius Rice, combined to play just 13 minutes in the first half due to foul trouble.
Pittsburgh opened a 12 point lead early in the second half when Knight hit a three-pointer to make the score 44-32 with 16:38 to play.
Miami however would battle back using a 20-10 run to cut the lead to 54-52 following a free throw by Jones at the 8:37 mark. Pittsburgh answered with a 20-9 run of its own to put the game away.
For UM Ticket information contact the Hurricane Ticket Office at 1-800-GO-CANES.
Following the Pittsburgh game the Hurricanes continue their five-game homestand against Providence, January 19, at noon at Miami Arena. Miami will continue its homestand against Villanova (Jan. 24, 7:30 p.m.), Boston College (Jan. 29, 7:30 p.m.) and Connecticut (Feb. 2, 7:30 p.m.)
The Pittsburgh game is being produced by ESPN Regional Television and is being broadcast live in Miami on Fox Sports Net Florida. Jay Randolph will handle the play-by-play duties with Bob Wenzel adding analysis.
The game is also being broadcast on the Hurricane Radio Network (WQAM-560 AM). Marc Vandermeer, entering his third season as the “Voice of the Hurricanes,” will handle the play-by-play duties while Joe Zagacki will provide in-depth analysis.
A WIN AGAINST PITTSBURGH WOULD:
Improve Miami’s record to 16-2, 3-2 in the BIG EAST.Mark Miami’s sixth straight win over Pittsburgh at Miami Arena.Be Miami’s second straight win.Improve Miami’s home record to 9-0.Mark Miami’s 11th straight home victory.
ON THE COACHES:
University of Miami head coach Perry Clark is in his second season with the Hurricanes and 13th season overall as a collegiate head coach. Clark is 31-15 (.674) at Miami, including an 15-2 start this season, while his career record in 13 seasons stands at 216-160 (.574). Last season Clark led the Hurricanes to a berth in the National Invitation Tournament marking the eighth time in 12 seasons he has guided his team to post season play.
Pittsburgh head coach Ben Howland is in his third season with the Panthers and eighth season overall. Howland’s record at Pittsburgh is 46-31 (.597), including a 15-2 mark this season. His overall record stands at 125-90 (.581).
UM TIES WIN STREAK RECORD:
Miami’s 14-0 start marked the best in school-history and tied the school-record for the most consecutive victories set in 1947.
Since the 1998-99 season, Miami is 20-9 in BIG EAST road games. The 20-9 mark is the best record among BIG EAST schools over that period. The Hurricanes have won 21 of their last 30 BIG EAST road games dating back to the 1997-98 season.
MIAMI GOES PERFECT OUT OF CONFERENCE:
With its 71-48 win over St. Francis (PA) on December 30, the University of Miami completed its non-conference schedule with a perfect 13-0 record marking the first time in school-history the Hurricanes have gone undefeated in non-conference play.
Miami’s loss to Connecticut ended a very unusual winning streak. Including baseball, football and basketball the Hurricanes had recorded 43 consecutive victories.
The UM baseball team won its final 17 games in winning the 2001 NCAA National Championship. The UM football team followed with a perfect 12-0 record including a Rose Bowl victory over Nebraska for the 2001 national title. The UM basketball opened the season with 14 straight wins.
SALMONS THE ONE AND ONLY:
With his 15 points and 10 assists against Charlotte on December 22, John Salmons became the first Hurricane to record 1000 points, 500 rebounds, 300 assists and 150 steals during his career. Salmons currenlty has 1052 points, 586 rebounds, 315 assists and 170 steals.
MIAMI vs. NON-CONFERENCE OPPONENTS:
Since becoming the 10th member of The BIG EAST Conference beginning with the 1991-92 season, the Hurricanes have compiled a 74-35 (.679) record against non-conference opponents, including a 50-13 mark (.794) at the Miami Arena.
Last season Miami posted its seventh consecutive winning season. The last time Miami recorded at least seven straight winning seasons was the 1968-69 campaign when the `Canes registered their 10th straight winning season.
WHO WILL TAKE CHARGE TONIGHT?:
This season the Hurricanes have had several players put the team on their shoulders and lead them to victory. In 11 of the first 17 games the Hurricane player that has either led or tied for the team lead in scoring has also led or tied for the team lead in rebounding.
MIAMI DOMINATES IN THE ARENA:
In 13 seasons at the Miami Arena the Hurricanes have compiled a 138-65 (.680) overall record, including a 7-0 mark this season. UM has posted a 77-19 (.802) home record since 1995. UM is 38-14 (.731) in its last 52 BIG EAST home games dating back to the 1995-96 season.
Miami sophomore Darius Rice, junior James Jones and senior John Salmons have started each of the last 46 games together. Salmons currently has the second longest streak in UM history having started 92 straight games. Kevin Norris (1994-98) holds the UM record for consecutive starts with 108.
As of January 13 the Hurricanes were No. 26 in the RPI rankings according to CollegeRPI.com. Miami’s ranking is the fourth highest among BIG EAST schools.
DID YOU KNOW?:
The University of Miami has registered a league best 38-16 (.704) conference mark since the 1998-99 season.
HURRICANES SIGN THREE:
Head coach Perry Clark signed three players during the early signing period. Joining UM next season will be 6-2, 185 pound guard Robert Hite (Cincinnati, OH/Winton Woods HS), 6-3, 185 pound guard Eric Wilkins (Piscataway, NJ/Oak Hill [VA] Academy), and 6-6, 190 pound swingman Ismael N’Diaye (Abidjan, Ivory Coast/Berkshire [FL] School).
Miami has played at least one overtime contest in each of the last three seasons. UM has amassed a 6-4 record (including tournament games) in BIG EAST overtime contests (4-3 at home). The ‘Canes, who have never had more than three overtime games in any season (3-0 in 1986-87 and 0-3 in 1990-91), own a 22-21 overall record in overtime contests during their history (4-4 in double-overtime games and a 18-17 mark in single-overtime contests). Miami is 6-4 in overtime games since 1995. Below is a list of UM’s overtime games since 1990:
VERSUS RANKED OPPONENTS:
UM has won its last five games against ranked teams including a 2-0 record this season. The Hurricanes are 17-16 versus ranked opponents since 1996-97 and have defeated at least one ranked team in each of the last eight seasons. Miami is 26-81 (.243) all-time against ranked teams including a 23-67 (.256) record since the rebirth of the program in 1985.
NO DAY AT THE BEACH:
Miami’s 77-74 win over No. 15 Connecticut on January 20 marked the seventh consecutive season that the Hurricanes have defeated a ranked opponent in the Miami Arena. Miami is 2-0 this season against ranked teams at Miami Arena having also defeated No. 22 Seton Hall, 72-66, on Feb. 1.
MIAMI WINS PARADISE JAM TOURNAMENT:
Miami’s victory over Clemson in the championship game of the Virgin Islands Paradise Jam marked UM’s first tournament title since the 1988 season when the Hurricanes took home the title at the Eastern Airlines Palm Beach Classic. That season UM defeated Penn, 102-69, in the opening round, then knocked off Wichita State, 81-59, in the championships game.
SALMONS NAMED PARADISE JAM MVP:
Miami senior guard John Salmons was named MVP of the Virgin Islands Paradise Jam after leading Miami to three victories and the tournament title. Salmons averaged 17.7 points, 6.3 rebounds, 5.3 assists and 2.7 steals during the three-game tournament, including an 18 point, 10 rebound performance in the title game.
VS THE STATE OF FLORIDA:
With its win over Florida A&M on December 18, Miami improved its record against teams from the state of Florida to 292-141 (.674). Miami has won 27 consecutive games against teams from the state of Florida. Miami has not lost to a Florida school since a 72-64 season opening loss to Florida International on Dec. 1, 1992.
LATE SEASON HEAT WAVE:
Over the last three seasons Miami has played well in the month of February registering a 20-3 (.870) record.
RICE FOR NAISMITH:
University of Miami sophomore Darius Rice (Jackson, MS) has been selected as one of 30 preseason candidates for the 2001-02 Naismith College Basketball Player of the Year Award.
Rice averaged 14.1 points and 4.9 rebounds per game last season while posting 20 double-figure scoring games including a UM freshman record 35 points against Central Florida. Rice recorded a team-high 62 three-point baskets in 2000-01 and registered 31 steals and 14 blocks.
Rice is one of three BIG EAST athletes recognized as a preseason candidate for the Naismith Award. Joining Rice on the list are Troy Bell (Boston College) and Caron Butler (Connecticut).
The Naismith Awards program, now in its 34th year, honors the outstanding college basketball player in the UnitedStates.
MIAMI REACHES POST-SEASON, AGAIN:
The Hurricanes have advanced to the post-season in five straight seasons and six times in the last seven years. Miami has gone to the NCAA Tournament in three of the last four seasons including a Sweet Sixteen appearance in 2000.
BIG EAST PICK-AND-ROLL PACKAGES AVAILABLE:
The University of Miami will offer a BIG EAST Pick n Roll mini-plan package for the upcoming 2001-02 men’s basketball season. The package is only $80 and includes tickets to any five BIG EAST Conference games of the customer’s choice.
BIG EAST Pick ‘n Roll mini-plan seats will be located in the lower-bowl sidecourt sections of the Miami Arena.
The UM Ticket Office, located at the Hecht Athletic Center on the UM campus, is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to noon on Saturdays. For more information or to purchase tickets contact UM Ticket Office at 1-800-GO-CANES.
ONLINE ALL THE TIME:
Check out the official University of Miami Athletic Department website for up to the minute information on Hurricane Athletics at www.hurricanesports.com.