No. 10 Miami (Fla.) doesn’t have time to dwell on an embarrassing 96-71 loss at North Carolina on Saturday as it hosts No. 8 Virginia on Monday night. The Hurricanes trailed by as many as 38 points against the Tar Heels and now face another tough test against the well-rested Cavaliers, who haven’t played in seven days and have won eight of their past nine games.
Miami’s usually solid defense allowed 50 points in the paint, nine 3-pointers and 52.2 percent shooting to the Tar Heels, who looked determined from the tip to make up for its one-point loss to Duke and take over sole possession of first place in the ACC. “Well, that’s what happens when one team plays really well and the other doesn’t play well at all,” Miami coach Jim Larranaga told reporters after the loss. “They had our number from start to finish. We didn’t do anything we planned on doing.” The defensive-minded Cavaliers beat North Carolina State 73-53 in their most recent game as they continued to play suffocating defense – opponents have averaged only 49.2 points in Virginia’s last five wins. Led by senior guard Malcolm Brogdon, Virginia’s offense isn’t bad either – coach Tony Bennett’s team is seventh in the nation in field-goal percentage (49.6), 10th in 3-point percentage (40.6) and 17th in free-throw percentage (75.4).
TV: 7 p.m. ET, ESPN
LINE HISTORY: Miami opened as slight 1-point home favorites, while the total is currently off the board.
Virginia – No injuries to report.
Miami – G J. Newton (questionable Monday, shin).
DANCE TEAM WAR:
ABOUT VIRGINIA (21-5, 12-12 ATS, 10-14 O/U): Brogdon is the offensive go-to man for the Cavaliers, averaging a team-best 17,8 points on 46.5 percent shooting. His backcourt mate, junior point guard London Perrantes (11.3 points, 3.9 assists) is a solid 3-point shooter (54.2 percent) and the pair combined for 27 second-half points in Virginia’s earlier 66-58 win over Miami. Senior forward Anthony Gill is the Cavaliers’ top inside threat (13.8 points, 5.8 rebounds) and combined with senior 7-footer Mike Tobey (7.1 points) for 27 points in that same game.
ABOUT MIAMI (21-5, 15-9-1 ATS, 12-13 O/U): The Hurricanes are led by senior shooting guard Sheldon McClellan (team-leading 15.8 points on 52 percent shooting) and senior point guard Angel Rodriguez (11.5 points, 4.4 assists). Senior 7-foot center Tonye Jekiri (8.1 points, 9.4 rebounds) is usually the team’s defensive stopper inside but had no answer for Brice Johnson and Co. on Saturday. Sophomore guard Ja’Quan Newton, the team’s second-leading scorer (11.1), left the North Carolina loss with what Larranaga called a left knee bruise and his status is uncertain for the game.
* Virginia is 4-0 ATS in its last four meetings with Miami.
* Over is 4-1 in the last five meetings in Miami.
* Under is 6-0 in Virginia’s last six games overall.
* Virginia is 4-0 ATS in its last four games overall.
COVERS CONSENSUS: Early on in the wagering bettors are backing Virginia with 56 percent of wagers on the Cavaliers.