The topsy-turvy season the NCAA is experiencing continued today when the Miami Hurricanes were upset in embarrassing fashion by unranked Wake Forest, ending the Hurricanes undefeated streak in conference play. Before this game, many had begun to believe that Miami had a serious chance of taking over the No. 1 spot in the country but that dream has been put on hold after the Canes upset loss.
Hurricanes’ guard Shane Larkin said before the game he had a bad feeling about what was going to happen in the game and his premonitions turned out to be correct.
“You could just see it tonight. I had a bad feeling coming into warm-ups with everybody going slow,” Larkin said. “I was trying to get people to go fast, and I wasn’t even going full speed like I should have.”
Miami never got closer than 11 points in the second half as Wake Forest ran away with the game down the stretch to pull off their highest profile win of their season so far. To make matters worse, the 15 point loss came on the road and ended the Hurricanes 14-game winning streak they were riding to their best ever national ranking in the history of the basketball program.
On the flip side, the Demon Deacons say the win is the first massive step in proving that their program is one the entire NCAA should take notice of moving forward.
“It shows hope, and if everybody has faith in us and the energy stays the way it does every game — at home, at least — that just shows a big future for Wake Forest basketball and the entire program, period,” Miller-McIntyre said. “I know it hasn’t been so well in the past few years, but we’re all trying to put that behind us.”
But while the loss is devastating, the Hurricanes are blaming no one but themselves for what happened. Big man Reggie Johnson gave credit where credit was due, saying the Demon Deacons flat out beat the Canes on Saturday
“Wake Forest won this game,” said Johnson. “We had mental lapses on the defensive and offensive end. … I don’t want to take anything away from Wake Forest.”
The Hurricanes season is far from over, and they still have a chance to position themselves nicely in the NCAA Tournament next month. But if this game shows us anything, it’s that this topsy-turvy season is nowhere near being out of surprises and March will truly be filled with more than enough madness.