The Miami basketball program has emerged as a prohibitive favorite for Florida State transfer forward Matthew Cleveland ahead of his announcement on Sunday. Miami is listed with a 92.6 percent chance for a commitment from Cleveland and Auburn at four percent. Those numbers changed from Friday.
Auburn was the favorite with a 38.1 percent chance for a commitment from Cleveland and Missouri was at 33.3 percent on Friday per On3. Cleveland named Auburn, Miami and Missouri as his three finalists. It is not clear what changed or why Miami emerged as the leader for a Cleveland commitment on Saturday.
Cleveland also received a crystal ball projecting him to Miami from 247 Sports. A commitment from Cleveland would provide the Miami basketball program with an ideal replacement for Jordan Miller. Cleveland averaged 13.8 points per game, 7.4 rebounds and shot 44.5 percent from the floor for Florida State this past season.
In his Florida State career, Cleveland averaged 12.7 PPG, 6.0 RPG and shot 44.8 percent from the floor. Cleveland was the 25th prospect and seventh small forward in the Class of 2021. Cleveland improved his three-point shooting from 17.6 percent as a freshman to 35.0 percent in his 2022-23 sophomore campaign.
Miller was more efficient from the floor shooting 54.5 percent. Cleveland and Miller were similar in three-point efficiency. Miller shot 35.2 percent on threes last season. Cleveland is the 23rd-ranked transfer and third small forward in the 2023 Class. Miami has not added a transfer for the 2023-24 season.
The Hurricanes lost Miller who completed his college eligibility and guard Isaiah Wong who chose to forego his final season of eligibility after four years with Miami. Miami is awaiting decisions from Norchad Omier and Nijel Pack. Omier and Pack entered the NBA Draft while leaving open the possibility to return next season.
The likelihood is that Omier and Pack will return. Neither Omier nor Pack is projected to be selected in the 2023 NBA Draft. A starting five of Cleveland, Bensley Joseph, Omier, Pack and Wooga Poplar provides the Miami basketball program with an excellent foundation entering next season.