Is Miami basketball being fairly matched in ACC-Big Ten Challenge?

MIAMI, FL - JANUARY 24: Lonnie Walker IV
MIAMI, FL - JANUARY 24: Lonnie Walker IV /
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It’s understandable from a travel standpoint why Miami is playing Rutgers and Pittsburgh is playing Iowa. From a competitive standpoint playing the Scarlet Knights hinders the Hurricanes in a quest for a fourth consecutive NCAA Tournament berth.

The Miami basketball program has never made four straight NCAA Tournaments. Miami has made three straight NCAA Tournaments twice. The first accomplished that 1998-2000 and the current streak.

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  • NCAA.Com’s basketball writer Andy Katz rated the Miami-Rutgers game 28th out of 32 conference challenge games for the upcoming season. The Big Ten also has a challenge competition with the Big East. The SEC and Big XII have one as well. Katz’s commented on the Miami-Rutgers game.

    "“The Hurricanes should be an NCAA team and an upper echelon ACC squad. The Scarlet Knights are hoping they can build off the MSG (Madison Square Garden) euphoria from the Big Ten tournament. How Rutgers handles the St. John’s game two weeks earlier could determine how Rutgers will fare in Coral Gables.”"

    November and December yield a plethora of challenge games and in-season tournaments. The Miami basketball program has played at a high level for most of Larranaga’s tenure.

    Being able to sign former Miami guards Bruce Brown and Lonnie Walker and forward Dewan Huell in the last two recruiting classes has elevated the Hurricanes nationally. Brown and Walker will hear their names called later this month in the NBA Draft.

    Next: What would Miami basketball All-time starting five be?

    The ACC would benefit from adding another program to the at least five nationally well-known programs in the conference. They need to step in and make the games in the ACC-Big Ten Challenge more attractive to a national viewing audience.