Miami v North Carolina State

No. 14 Miami outlasts No. 19 NC State with a tip-in at the buzzer


Reggie Johnson tipped-in a missed runner from Shane Larkin with 0.8 seconds left to give No. 14 Miami a 78-77 win over No. 19 NC State in Raleigh on Saturday afternoon.

Johnson finished with 15 points and eight boards as five Hurricanes played their way into double-figures, led by 18 points from Durand Scott.

NC State had control for much of the early part of the second half, but Miami used an 11-0 run to take a 67-62 lead with about six minutes left in the game, but the Wolfpack answered with a 12-2 run of their own, taking a five point lead with just three minutes left.

But that’s when bad NC State showed back up. On their last five possessions, NC State managed two turnovers, a missed front-end from CJ Leslie and a questionable pull-up jumper from Tyler Lewis with a 78-77 lead and just 20 seconds left on the clock.

Leslie led the way for the Wolfpack with 18 points and 12 boards. NC State was playing without Lorenzo Brown, who had an injured ankle.

And that injury to Brown is the reason why it’s risky to put too much stock into the outcome of this game.

NC State played great for 37 minutes, but struggled to execute down the stretch. Could that have changed with Brown on the floor?

Miami’s vaunted defense against the Wolfpack, but how much of that was a product of playing one of the most potent offenses in the country on the road?

Was this Tyler Lewis — 16 points, five assists, just a single turnover — performance a fluke because Miami hadn’t had a chance to scout him properly?

The difference in this game was a single-point; a basket scored on a tip-in with 0.8 seconds left on the clock. Can we really define either team on a game that was that tightly contested?

The only lasting opinion that can be made is that the Wolfpack now have essentially no chance of winning the ACC regular season title. That tip-in by Johnson? It game kept Miami undefeated in the ACC, two games in front of Virginia and Duke and three games ahead of North Carolina.

The Wolfpack?

They’re all the way back in fifth place, four games behind the Hurricanes in the loss column. A win — which was as close as a simple box out — and they would have been two games back of the Hurricanes.

That’s a two game swing. Keep that in mind come March.

You can find Rob on twitter @RobDauster.

SMU won’t appeal tournament ban, Brown suspension

Associated Press
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Last month the NCAA announced that due to rules violations found in their investigation of the SMU men’s basketball program, the team would be banned from postseason play in 2015-16 and head coach Larry Brown would be suspended for the first nine games of the 2015-16 season. With a team led by seniors Nic Moore and Markus Kennedy and just one player (Keith Frazier) being the subject of the investigation, it was assumed that SMU would at the very least appeal the postseason ban.

Friday, the school announced that while it will appeal some of the penalties handed down by the NCAA to the men’s basketball and men’s golf programs they will not appeal the postseason ban or Brown’s suspension.

“After careful consideration, however, we will not appeal the NCAA post-season ban on men’s basketball or partial season suspension of Head Men’s Basketball Coach Larry Brown,” SMU president R. Gerald Turner stated in the release. “Although we regret the severe impact on our student-athletes, the simple fact is that the NCAA penalty structure mandates at minimum a one-year post-season ban for the level of misconduct that occurred, in our case, when a former staff member completed an online high school course for a prospective student-athlete, committing academic misconduct.

“In addition, should we appeal this matter, the lengthy process and uncertainty during this period could harm many aspects of the program. Coach Brown and his staff also agree that it is in the best interests of the program to accept these sanctions and move forward.”

Among the penalties the school will appeal (with regards to the basketball program) are the “duration of scholarship losses” and how long the recruiting restrictions placed on the program will last, and the vacating of games Frazier played in during the 2013-14 season.

This a tough turn of events for players who had nothing to do with the violations, as they see their opportunity to return to the NCAA tournament taken away. As a result of the school’s decision, SMU’s season will end March 9 following their regular season finale against Cincinnati.

Kevin Marfo commits to George Washington

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Kevin Marfo committed to George Washington on Friday evening, announcing his decision on Twitter.

“I am grateful and appreciative to all the schools that recruited me. But I will be spending the next four years at George Washington University,” he tweeted.

This caps a successful week for Mike Lonergan on the recruiting trail. On Tuesday, GW landed a commitment from Darnell Rogers, a 5-foot-3 point guard. He is the son of former GW guard Shawnta Rogers, the 1999 Atlantic 10 Player of the Year. GW ends the week by adding a tenacious rebounder to a front court that graduates top rebounder Kevin Larsen after this season. Rogers and Marfo join power forward Collin Smith in the Class of 2016. Seton Hall transfer Jaren Sina will also be eligible in 2016-17.

He cut his list to 10 in August with Pittsburgh, Georgia Tech, Minnesota, Boston College, UMass, Saint Joseph’s, DePaul, Rhode Island and Providence all making the cut along wit the Colonials. He later trimmed the list to five finalists: BC, Providence, DePaul, GW and Rhode Island.

The Worcester Academy (Mass.) forward played for BABC this summer in the Nike EYBL, averaging 11.3 points and 8.8 rebounds per game.  The 6-foot-8 Marfo is listed as the No. 148 overall player in the Class of 2016 by Rivals.