Reporting Tim Kephart
MIAMI (CBSMiami) – The University of Miami stands poised to clinch a number one seed in the NCAA Tournament as March begins Friday, but before that the Hurricanes clinched at least a share of the Atlantic Coast Conference regular season championship thanks to a little help from Virginia.
The Duke Blue Devils, which has the second-best record in the ACC, fell 73-68 in Charlottesville Thursday night which secured UM’s share of the ACC regular season title. But just because Duke is coming off a loss, and UM is now at least co-champion, there’s still plenty of business to take care of before the tournaments.
Miami is now three games ahead of Duke in the ACC with a 14-1 overall conference record to Duke’s 11-4 ACC record. Miami has three regular season games left and assuming the Canes can beat Duke, Georgia Tech, or Clemson, the boys from Coral Gables can clinch the ACC regular season title with a victory in any of those games.
Miami started out the season unranked and lost to Saint Leo in an exhibition game and Florida Gulf Coast University in the second game of the season. However, since December 25, 2012, the Canes have lost just one game, last weekend to Wake Forest.
Miami is 23-4 overall, but Saturday’s game at Cameron Indoor Stadium will be one of the toughest the Canes have faced all season. Duke will be looking for revenge after Miami ran the Blue Devils out of town with a 90-63 win on January 23.
If Miami can win at Duke on Saturday, the Canes could jump as high as number one in the rankings heading into the final week of the regular season.