Sports

Haith leads Hurricanes back to prominence

I would like to nominate men’s basketball Head Coach Frank Haith for more than ACC Coach of the Year. I think he’s the National Coach of the Year.

I know that Al Skinner and Boston College are 20-1 and the Eagles have been playing tremendous basketball, but let’s examine what Haith has done with this University of Miami team.

The ‘Canes have 15 victories and are 6-5 in the ACC, a very strong basketball conference. Haith’s squad also beat Maryland this season; the same Terrapins team that beat Duke twice.

Haith inherited a team from Perry Clark that was abysmal last season. It failed to even qualify for the Big East tournament and lost several close games because it had an inability to make defensive stops late in games. The offense consisted of passing the ball around the perimeter and chucking three-point shots. The team struggled on both ends of the court and after a solid start was left reeling in Big East play and out of postseason contention.

This year, the Hurricanes have locked up at least an NIT bid and are a contender to make the NCAA Tournament. If they can get 18 wins, they will likely be a bubble team. If they get to 19 wins, I think they will get in. They have five games left plus the ACC Tournament to make their case for the NCAA Tournament and if you get in the dance, anything can happen.

The turnaround of the Hurricanes can only be attributed to one man: Haith. He gets the credit because he is winning with virtually the same team that Clark could not win with. As a matter of fact, a legitimate case could be made that this year’s team talent-wise is worse than last year’s since Darius Rice is gone. Haith’s star players-Diaz, Hite, and Anthony Harris-are all guys that Clark had last season. Harris never saw the light of day in the Hurricanes lineup and Diaz and Hite have each improved their games under Haith.

Under Clark, a player hardly ever got any better, the team played no defense and lacked leadership and direction. Under Haith, this team plays solid fundamental basketball and has found ways to win games. The Hurricanes have pulled out close victories throughout the season.

So here’s a team who failed to make the Big East Tournament and was projected to finish last in the ACC, and they are contending for a NCAA Tournament bid. If that doesn’t make Haith a National Coach of the Year candidate, I don’t know what will. Whether he wins that award or not, I know one thing for sure: If the Hurricanes are dancing in March, it will be because of the tremendous job that Haith has done.

Darren Grossman can be contacted at d.grossman@umiami.edu.

February 15, 2005

Reporters

The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

Keontra Smith waited a long time for the Miami Hurricnaes to finally offer him. The defensive back g ...

University of Miami true freshman running back Cam’ron Davis, known as Cam for short, is about to lo ...

It’s impossible for the Miami Hurricanes to ignore all the negative feedback which comes along with ...

The Pittsburgh Panthers’ win against the Virginia Tech Hokies was, for all intents and purposes, alr ...

University of Miami athletic director Blake James has no intention of pressuring or forcing coach Ma ...

A UM researcher is helping to lead a study on how smoke interacts with clouds and its impact on the ...

People are bombarded with news and information these days, providing opportunities for discourse tha ...

Students, faculty and staff stopped by the School of Architecture’s Korach Gallery to learn what Mag ...

The On Campus event featured innovative National Geographic Explorers—photographers, scientists, sto ...

UM Professor of Law Frances R. Hill tells us what we should know. ...

The Canes top the Golden Eagles to move onto the WNIT Championship game. ...

The Canes know the importance a win over Virginia Tech on Saturday can have heading into the final w ...

The University of Miami women's golf team announced Thursday that international amateur standou ...

N'Kosi Perry wants to build off his showing at Georgia Tech with another strong performance thi ...

Tournament runs Nov. 21-24, 2019, in Charleston, S.C. ...

TMH Twitter
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.