Basketball, Sports

Larranaga works on implementing new style

DeQuan Jones dunks the basketball during the Miami Madness event. Zach Beeker//The Miami Hurricane

The wait is over for Miami hoops enthusiasts: The men’s basketball team is set to launch its season Thursday at 7 p.m. in an exhibition game against Florida Southern.

While the game’s result won’t officially be reflected in the Canes’ record, it will be the team’s first contest since it was eliminated by Alabama in a 79-64 loss in the quarterfinals of last season’s NIT.

New head coach Jim Larranaga has had his players preparing for the start of the season for the past three weeks with practices and intra-squad scrimmages.

“The guys are tired of playing against each other,” he said. “You want to try and beat on somebody else.”

Miami comes into the season projected to finish fifth in the very competitive ACC, as it returns 11 players from last season’s 12-man roster that finished with a 21-15 record and a ninth-place finish in the conference.

Senior guard Malcolm Grant leads a talented and deep backcourt for the Canes, and was voted to the Preseason All-ACC team. Last season, Grant led the conference in three different statistical categories: three-point percentage, three-pointers made per game and free throw percentage.

With a talented and athletic group of players, Larranaga is faced with the challenge of adjusting his team to a new style of play.

“Whenever you’re developing a new system, it takes the players a while to adjust,” he said. “A coach can’t adjust to 13 different styles, but 13 people can adjust to one new style.”

Larranaga feels that, defensively, the team needs to improve on pressuring the ball, preventing dribble penetration and ultimately rebounding better to finish off opponents’ possessions.

Offensively, he’d like to see his guards distribute without turning the ball over. Larranaga said he sees too many turnovers in practice because players are in a hurry.

The Canes are hindered by injuries  in the frontcourt. Julian Gamble is out for the season with an ACL tear, and Reggie Johnson isn’t expected back until January.

Larranaga will mostly play a four-guard lineup this season, with either Kenny Kadji or Raphael Akpejiori playing center. Against bigger teams, expect Kadji and Akpejiori to split playing time and create better matchups.

Kadji will not play in Thursday’s exhibition at the BankUnited Center because of a “violation of team expectations.”

November 2, 2011

Reporters

David Furones

Senior Sports Writer


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

After this past University of Miami football game, coach Mark Richt said the crowd came alive during ...

The attorneys for University of Miami men’s basketball coach Jim Larrañaga expect indictments to be ...

Few could have imagined this scenario coming into Saturday’s University of Miami football game at ho ...

Alex Cora’s success hasn’t surprised Miami Hurricanes baseball coach Jim Morris. Cora, according to ...

A six-pack of Canes notes on a Thursday: • Defensive coordinator Manny Diaz has an interesting theor ...

Univeristy of Miami’s Wynwood Art Gallery holds its annual faculty exhibition featuring thought-prov ...

From a game simulating how whales navigate to a tribute to Ella Fitzgerald, the U showcased some of ...

A new mobile game called Blues and Reds, now available worldwide, aims to help researchers study int ...

A major Lancet Commission report, a three-year project headed by UM’s Professor Felicia Knaul and co ...

With a $6.8 million NIH grant, the UM School of Nursing and Health Studies and FIU Robert Stempel Co ...

Behind a historic performance from senior Olga Strantzali, the University of Miami volleyball team b ...

Thirty years ago, the 1987 Hurricanes achieved perfection. This weekend they are back where it all b ...

As a Hurricane Club member, you are invited to participate in the 25th Annual University of Miami Ha ...

The Miami women's tennis team opened play Friday at the ITA Southeast Regional Championships Pr ...

The Miami soccer team will conclude its 2017 home slate Sunday against Notre Dame and recognize its ...

TMH Twitter Feed
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.