The Canes will use the exhibition portion of the season to try to answer the question marks that exist at the point guard and center positions. Miami will likely platoon Anthony Harris, Brandon Okpalobi, and Eric Wilkins at point guard to find the player that plays with the most control and stays out of trouble. At center, Anthony King, Gary Hamilton, and Glenn Batemon will all see time down-low. Head Coach Frank Haith has said that Hamilton has taken on the role as being a leader of the team. Batemon is a transfer from Fordham University. Batemon is a space eater, who could give the Canes needed depth in the post, if he can continue to work on shedding more weight.
Barry, a Division II school, will bring an experienced team into the Convocation Center. Four of their five starters are seniors that returned from a squad that posted a 14-14 record. Barry is led by the inside-outside combination of 6-7 forward Nick Ellingsworth-Perez and 6-4 guard Clifford Smith. Miami leads the series 2-0. The last time the Canes played Barry, they won 81-64 on December 11, 1992.
University of Miami
William Frisby F 6-8 235 Sr. Gary Hamilton C 6-10 250 Jr. Anthony Harris G 6-2 180 So. Guillermo Diaz G 6-2 180 So. Rob Hite G 6-2 190 Jr.
N. Ellingsworth-Perez F 6-8 215 Sr. Andres Alfonso F 6-7 227 Sr. Casey Johnson C 6-10 244 Sr. Ryan Saunders G 5-9 152 So. Clifford Smith G 6-4 207 Sr.Keep Your Eye On
Miami point guard Anthony Harris. Haith has said that he is looking for a point guard, and Anthony Harris looks like he will be the man to win or lose the job. For Haith's up-tempo offense to be effective, a consistent point guard that keeps the ball moving and doesn't turn the ball over is essential. Harris can score and make plays, but Haith would rather he make the easy play rather than trying to do too much. Harris is a relatively inexperienced player, he played a season high 9 minutes versus North Carolina AT&T. If Harris does not perform, Haith will not hesitate to yank him and play Brandon Okpalobi, Eric Wilkins, and even freshman Antoine Mayhand at point guard.
Key to the Game
This is the first game for the Hurricanes under Head Coach Frank Haith. He brings a fresh attitude and atmosphere to this years team. Haith, a former assistant coach at the University of Texas, preaches effort and commitment to his team by bringing much needed discipline and direction to the team. Haith is admittedly still learning his team, and looking at which combination of players best suit his style. Haith will play what he calls a "slanted" style. This style is fast and up-tempo on offense, while on defense the Canes will look to slow things down. While the Canes will probably treat this game like an exhibition, it will be interesting to finally see Head Coach Frank Haith in action.
Anthony Harris on the expectations of this season:
"We expect to go in and shock a lot of people (this season). We are the underdogs and there is nothing wrong with being the underdogs. It is all about staying focused and going out there and working hard."