Quincy Ford capped off a 24 point night by drilling a step-back jumper at the buzzer as Northeastern knocked off No. 15 Miami, 78-77, in Coral Gables on Friday.
Northeastern led at the half, but Miami had seemingly taken control of the game when they went up 70-63 with four minutes left. But David Walker, who finished with 21 points, helped to lead the Huskies back, sparking a 13-2 run that put Northeastern up 76-72.
After a three from Davon Reed and a bucket from Sheldon McClellan put Miami ahead, Ford hit the shot that gave NU the win.
Miami was one of the hottest teams in the country following their win in the Puerto Rico Tip-Off last weekend, as they rolled over Mississippi State, Utah and Butler. But against Northeastern, the Hurricanes came out a bit sluggish — tryptophan hangover? — and never could find a way to slow down Northeastern’s stars. Ford and Walker are Bill Coen’s two stars, and they finished with a combined 45 points.
To be fair, Northeastern is a good team. They’ve not top 25 good and they’re probably not better than any of the teams that Miami beat last weekend, but they are coming off of an NCAA tournament appearance and they are a favorite to win the CAA this year. They’re well-coached and did the things they needed to do to beat Miami: they shot 12-for-22 from three and they gave up just six offensive rebounds.
As far as Miami is concerned, I’m not overly concerned about this loss. It doesn’t change what happened in Puerto Rico and it certainly doesn’t change the fact that they have talented guards, size up front, depth and plenty of experience. Jim Larrañaga’s got a squad.
The red flag is that the Hurricanes have had a tendency to be inconsistent in recent years. Remember, they won at Duke last season then went to the NIT. And point guard Angel Rodriguez, who scored 10 of his 12 points down the stretch on Friday, is arguably the most inconsistent player in college basketball.
If they haven’t solved those problems, that’s a much bigger concern than losing a hard-fought game to a good mid-major team.