Nijel Pack to miss 4th straight Miami basketball game versus UNC

The Miami basketball team will be without guard Nijel Pack for the fourth straight game on Monday night versus North Carolina.
Feb 10, 2024; Coral Gables, Florida, USA; Miami Hurricanes guard Nijel Pack (24) drives to the
Feb 10, 2024; Coral Gables, Florida, USA; Miami Hurricanes guard Nijel Pack (24) drives to the / Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

Fourth-year junior guard Nijel Pack will miss his fourth straight game for the Miami basketball team, initially reported by Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports. Miami travels to North Carolina on Monday night with a six-game losing streak. The Hurricanes also have a five-game road losing streak.

Miami has only had a full roster for eight of its 17 ACC Games. Pack previously missed two games in December. Jim Larranaga reported last Monday that Pack was initially expected back this past weekend for the Georgia Tech game. Larranaga mentioned Pack met with doctors to discuss his plan for the remainder of this season.

Miami forward Matthew Cleveland returned for Miami after missing the loss to Duke on Wednesday. Cleveland missed two games last month with a hip injury he suffered versus Notre Dame. Cleveland had 10 points and six rebounds on 4-14 from the floor in Miami's loss to Georgia Tech on Saturday.

Pack leads Miami, averaging 33.3 minutes per game and with 3.6 assists per contest, is fourth at 13.7 points per game and second with 47 three-point shots made. Bensley Joseph, who was replaced in the starting lineup by Kyshawn George to begin February, will continue starting with Pack out.

Joseph has started 23 of the 28 Miami games this season. Miami loses a lot of offense without Pack. Joseph is averaging 9.1 PPG, 3.4 RPG and 3.4 APG while shooting 40.6 percent from the floor and 35.6 percent of his three-point attempts. Pack is shooting 40.5 percent from the floor and 36.4 percent on threes.

While the numerical difference between Joseph and Pack is negligible, they are deceiving. Pack is far more of a dynamic player offensively, with a far better range on his jump shot. Miami needs Cleveland, George, Norchad Omier and Wooga Poplar to have productive games on Monday night at North Carolina.

North Carolina won 75-72 at Miami earlier this month. George did not play versus the Tar Heels in the previous meeting. Miami had everyone else in the loss to North Carolina. Pack scored 20 points on 8-17 from the floor and 4-8 threes in the previous meeting. Pack scored 18 of his 20 points in the first half in the loss to North Carolina.

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Omier matched Pack with 20 points and also had 11 rebounds. Poplar was the other Hurricane in double figures in the last game versus North Carolina with 13 points. Cleveland had seven and Joseph six versus the Tar Heels. Joseph finished 2-9 from the floor and missed all four of his three-point attempts.