The Miami Hurricanes entered Saturday’s game versus Wake Forest undefeated in ACC play and on a 14-game win streak. With a 22-3 overall record, the Hurricanes were an unquestioned top seed in the upcoming NCAA tournament. However, after a resounding 80-65 loss to Wake Forest, a No. 1 seed in the March tournament is very much in question.
Prior to Saturday’s game, the Hurricanes had dominated ACC play. However, Wake Forest turned the tables on the Hurricanes early in Saturday’s matchup. At one point in the first half, Wake Forest held a 19-point lead over the vaunted Hurricanes. The 19-point deficit was the biggest deficit the Hurricanes had faced in ACC play.
After closing the deficit to 13 points at halftime, the Hurricanes were able to cut the lead to five points with about 13 minutes remaining in the game. However, Wake Forest used a 14-2 run to take a 17-point lead with seven minutes remaining in the game and never looked back. The 15-point loss was not only the Hurricanes’ first ACC loss, but it was their largest defeat since a 69-50 loss to Arizona on December 23.
The loss brings up a number of questions concerning a potential top seed in the NCAA tournament for the University of Miami. In fact, in many analysts’ opinions, the Hurricanes are no longer a top seed in the tournament. After the loss, various analysts on a variety of college basketball television programs projected the Hurricanes as a No. 2 seed.
According to the tournament predictions provided by cbssports.com, the Hurricanes are now a No. 3 seed in the West Region after previously being a top seed. However, in Joe Lunardi’s most recent edition of Bracketology, the Hurricanes are still a top seed in the tournament. The Hurricanes are currently the top seed in the East Region.
The Hurricanes still have the Duke Blue Devils remaining on their regular season schedule, along with Virginia Tech, Georgia Tech and Clemson. If Miami wins their remaining games and finishes the season strong by winning the ACC tournament, the Hurricanes would be a lock for a top seed in the NCAA tournament. However, if the Hurricanes falter in any way, a top seed in the March tournament is definitely out of the question.