Must Win To Stay alive

Miami (13-14, 3-10 BIG EAST)returns home to play host to the Seton Hall Pirates on Tuesday night. The Hurricanes spent last week in the northeast, where they suffered a pair of double digit losses to Connecticut and Providence. Miami has dropped nine straight.

The Pirates are considered a bubble team for the NCAA tournament and can not afford a loss at Miami. Seton Hall had lost two straight games before their victory Saturday over Villanova, 70-68.

When you only have two seniors on your roster, the last thing a young team wants to do is lose their leader. Such is the case with Miami and Darius Rice. Rice is doubtful to play against the Pirates which will once again for the underclassmen to shoulder the load. Robert Hite, the most consistent Cane for much of the year, has been keyed on by defenses over the past two weeks. He has deferred the scoring load to Guillmero Diaz, who has emerged as the Canes leading scorer over their last seven games. He has been in double figures in each of those, as well as nine of their last ten.

Seton Hall (17-7, 7-5 Big East) will have to play their way out of the NCAA tournament, rather than play their way in. Andre Barrett, the 5'9" water bug, is a 4-year starter for Louis Orr's Pirates. Barrett leads the balanced attack for Seton Hall, averaging 17.6 points and 6.2 assists per game.

Along with Barrett, Seton Hall puts four other players into double figures on average, including Kelly Whitney (13.1 ppg), John Allen (12.1 ppg), J.R. Morris (11.0 ppg), and Andre Sweet (10.5 ppg). J.R. Morris gives the Pirates a spark when he comes off the bench with high energy and scoring ability. Marcus Toney-El, the best pro-prospect for Seton Hall, averages 6.9 points and 5.5 boards a night.

The Pirates and Canes are slated for a 7:30 tip at the Convocation Center on the Miami campus. Miami trails Virginia Tech by two games for the last berth in New York City, with three winnable games to play. After Seton Hall, Miami travels to Philadelphia to lock horns with Villanova, before returning home next Saturday for Senior Day against West Virginia. The time is now for the Canes. The "Voice of the Hurricanes" Joe Zagacki and Josh Darrow will have the call on WQAM 560 AM in Miami. Fox Sports Net Florida will carry the video feed.

Canes Time Top Stories