Miami-Florida (3-2) vs. George Washington (4-0)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Thursday, November 28, 2 p.m. (ET)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Titan Gym (4,000) -- Fullerton, California. Television: ESPN U. Home Record: Miami 2-2, GW 3-0. Away Record: Miami 1-0, GW 1-0. Neutral Record: Miami 0-0, GW 0-0. Conference Record: Miami 0-0, GW 0-0. Series Record: George Washington leads, 2-0.
GAME NOTES: The Miami-Florida Hurricanes take on the George Washington Colonials in the opening round of the Wooden Legacy today at Titan Gym in Fullerton, California.
The event will continue here until moving to Anaheim's Honda Center on Sunday. Both teams will be back in action on Friday, facing either No. 25 Marquette or Cal State Fullerton, depending on the outcome of today's bouts.
Miami brings a 3-2 record into this tournament, the team having book-ended a pair of losses around three straight wins. The Hurricanes fell to Sunshine State rival UCF last Thursday at home, 63-58, marking the team's lowest scoring output of the young season.
George Washington, which has won both previous meetings in the series with Miami, is 4-0 for the first time since 2009, and is seeking its first 5-0 start since the 2005-06 club won its first eight games en route to the Division I's best regular season record at 26-1. The Colonials' most recent triumph came in a 94-50 thrashing of Delaware State on Tuesday, Nov. 19, meaning they haven't played a game in well over a week now.
Miami doesn't appear to have that one guy capable of taking over a game at a moment's notice, instead relying on several players who work well together at both ends of the court. Rion Brown is the leading scorer, but his 13.0 ppg comes with a field goal percentage of only .367. He does a nice job on the glass with 7.2 rpg, which is only fractions behind the effort put forth by Donnavan Kirk, who averages 12.8 points and 7.4 caroms per contest. Garrius Adams (12.2 ppg, 13 steals) rounds out the unit's double-digit scorers, the team as a whole making good on 42.1 percent of its total shots, and 34.5 percent of its 3-point tries, in putting up 71.0 ppg. Defensively, the 'Canes are permitting 66.4 ppg, with foes connecting on 43.0 percent of their field goal attempts, despite turning the ball over nearly 14 times per outing. Adams scored 20 points and grabbed eight rebounds to lead Miami in both categories, but his effort went for naught as the team dropped a five-point decision to UCF last week. Davon Reed came off the bench to tally 17 points in the losing cause.
Scoring points hasn't been a problem for the Colonials through the first few weeks of the season, as they are averaging a gaudy 89.5 ppg in hitting 53.3 percent of their field goal attempts, which includes a 46.4 percent showing from beyond the arc. Factor in a +13.0 rebounding margin, as well as a defensive effort that allows for 64.8 ppg and meager shooting percentages of .380 overall and .271 from long range, and it is evident why the team has come barreling out of the chute with four straight wins. Maurice Creek (17.3 ppg, 4.0 rpg) heads a list of five double-digit scorers, and Isaiah Armwood (15.5 ppg, 8.5 rpg, 2.8 bpg, 1.3 spg) is probably the most well-rounded player on the roster. Armwood scored 17 points, grabbed five boards and blocked three shots, all of which helped GW manhandle Delaware State last week. The Colonials had five others finish in double figures, and the team as a whole made good on 60.3 percent of its total shots, dropping 10-of-17 3-point attempts along the way.
Clearly, the Colonials are going to lose a game at some point, but there is nothing to suggest that today will be the day.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: George Washington 79, Miami-Florida 67
11/28 10:31:20 ET