Miami-Boston College Preview
Hampered by a struggling point guard, Miami is in danger of starting 0-3 on the road in the ACC for the first time in five years.
However, Angel Rodriguez and the No. 15 Hurricanes have a good chance to get back on track Wednesday night against a Boston College team that's been blown out in every league game and has lost 10 straight in this series.
Miami (13-3, 2-2) opened ACC play by beating Syracuse and Florida State at home by a combined 26 points. The Hurricanes were competitive throughout a 66-58 road defeat to then-No. 13 Virginia last Tuesday, but they were left extremely frustrated after succumbing to a 25-8 run over the final seven minutes of Saturday's 76-65 loss at Clemson.
The Hurricanes haven't dropped their first three ACC road games since opening 0-4 in 2010-11.
''We're going to need to do a heck of a lot better job,” said coach Jim Larranaga, whose team allowed the Tigers to shoot 48.2 percent after letting the Cavaliers hit 51.1.
Larranaga's first task might be to make sure Rodriguez regains his confidence.
The senior averaged 12.5 points and shot 44.2 percent in nonconference play but is scoring 7.3 per game on 27 percent shooting – 2 of 22 from 3-point range – in ACC action. He has eight assists and one steal over the last three games after previously averaging 3.9 and 1.8, respectively.
After posting 17 points against Virginia, Rodriguez had three on 1-of-7 shooting Saturday.
''He'd been playing like that and it's a real concern of mine,'' Larranaga said. ''My staff and I will talk about that as to how we can help him.''
Miami has shot 42.1 percent in ACC play but could turn things around at Boston College (7-10, 0-4), which has allowed a league-worst 56.1 percent shooting in conference games and an average of 77.3 points. The Eagles have lost each of those four games by at least 17 points.
The Hurricanes last lost to Boston College six years ago this week, but the two meetings last season were decided by a combined seven points and they needed double overtime to win 89-86 in Boston. The Eagles, though, got a combined 51 points from 2014-15 ACC scoring leader Olivier Hanlan in those two games, and he's currently playing in Lithuania.
Eli Carter has tried to fill that hole, averaging 17.6 points with his third school in five years, but he's the only current Boston College player to score at least 20 this season. Second-leading scorer Jerome Robinson (11.2 ppg) has totaled seven points on 3-of-14 shooting in the last two games.
Carter equaled a career high with 31 points Saturday, but the Eagles let then-No. 20 Pittsburgh shoot a season-high 57.9 percent and go 10 of 19 from 3-point range in an 84-61 loss.
“We've been coming (on) strong in a bunch of our ACC games,” Carter said. “We just have to get that extra push (as) teams are really fighting back. We have to throw that extra punch.
Miami's Sheldon McClellan (15.9 ppg) had 24 points in last season's win at Boston College, while Rodriguez was held to six before fouling out.
The Eagles have allowed an average of 82.5 points on 53.6 percent shooting while going 0-4 against Top 25 teams this season.