While many expected the game between the Miami Hurricanes and Duke Blue Devils to be competitive, nobody expected the 'Canes to destroy the No. 1 team in the country, 90-63 in Coral Gables.
Quinn Cook (1-12) and Seth Curry (0-for-10) were a combined 1-of-22 from the floor and a prime example of what went wrong in this game for Duke (16-2, 3-2 in ACC). Meanwhile, Miami (14-3, 5-0 in ACC) had four players reach double-digit scoring, with Durand Scott leading all scorers with 25 points. Big man Kenny Kadji added 22 and Shane Larkin contributed 18 points and 10 rebounds for Miami.
The 27-point difference was the third-worst loss for a No. 1 team in college basketball history.
The blowout was Miami's first win ever over a No. 1-ranked team.
Thanks to an incredible 25-1 run during the first half of this game, the Hurricanes jumped out to a huge 23-point lead going into the second half.
Miami's success was largely due to its performance from beyond the arc, particularly in the first half. The Hurricanes shot 6-of-11 from three-point range in the opening half, although they faded slightly in the second half from long distance.
Duke wasn't as successful from the field, shooting at a dreadful 30-percent clip, including 17 percent from beyond the arc. The Blue Devils faced a stingy defensive effort from the Hurricanes, who refused to allow Duke to get easy buckets.
The Hurricanes enjoyed eight blocks in total, with four of those rejections coming from Julian Gamble alone.
It was quite the opposite for the Hurricanes' offense, which was raining buckets at will and from any spot on the floor.
The second half gave way to a far more respectable effort from coach Mike Krzyzewski's squad, but based on their first-half effort, the Blue Devils couldn't have played any worse. Their pathetic first-half performance was simply too much of a deficit to make up in such a short amount of time.
If people didn't respect the Hurricanes before this game, they certainly will now. Their offense was clicking on all cylinders with great passing and even better shooting. More importantly, Miami proved that it can stop even the most elite offenses after its beatdown of Duke.
Miami's dominant performance against Duke made it abundantly clear that the Hurricanes were not affected by the pressure of facing the No. 1 team in the nation. ESPN's Twitter page echoed those sentiments:
Duke is ranked No. 1 … Miami playing tonight like they didn’t get the memo.— ESPN (@espn) January 24, 2013
With the Duke-Miami showdown becoming quite the lopsided affair, NBC Sports' Daniel Martin urged fans to turn their focus to a more competitive contest:
Since Duke-Miami is out of hand, take a look at La Salle-Butler. Explorers lead 41-40 with 9 min left in the second half.— Daniel Martin (@DanielJMartin_) January 24, 2013
You can easily chalk up Duke's horrid loss as a subpar showing, but credit has to be given to Miami and its great, all-around performance. ACCSports.com's own Jim Young gave credit where credit was due:
I realize most of the talk has been about Duke's dismal performance but Miami is legit, folks.— ACC Sports (@ACCSports) January 24, 2013
Making the case that the Blue Devils should remain the No. 1 team in the nation after getting crushed by the Hurricanes will be impossible. Gary Parrish of CBS Sports confirmed that thought process:
Just got settled at FedExForum for Grizz-Lakers and saw the Duke-Miami score. Lord. How are we gonna justify keeping Duke No. 1 after this?— Gary Parrish (@GaryParrishCBS) January 24, 2013
Former Duke star and ESPN analyst Jay Williams made some excuses for the Blue Devils' poor offensive play:
Duke is so limited offensively. Plumlee & Curry are the only experienced options. Every1 else is young. Miami is in attack mode early.— Jay Williams (@RealJayWilliams) January 24, 2013