In Brad Brownell's View
Overall thoughts on the game: “First off, I am extremely proud of our players. I thought we competed really well. We executed the game plan exceptionally well. We expected to win the game and I thought we played that way in most instances. Offensively, we could not finish some plays that we have got to make.
"The free throws at the end were a killer. We also had half a dozen shots that felt like they were half way down and rolled out for whatever reason. I am anxious to see that last layup. It certainly looked like a block from where I was standing, but we will got back and watch film on that one. It was definitely a disappointing loss after a great two days of practice and a terrific effort.”
On Jordan Roper’s play: “Roper made big shots, especially some tough, guarded shots. He played with a lot of confidence on offense. He played at a very high level tonight and it was certainly very much needed. We hope he can continue that. He made a lot of highly guarded shots. There was one in front of our bench that was very contested. His shooting ability and speed were a contribution to his success against one of the largest teams we will face. He had a heck of a ballgame.”
On Miami’s size: “Miami’s defense was very good. Defensively, their size is problematic, especially around the basket. They bother post players’ shots. Having said that, I thought we got the ball in great places on a lot of possessions, but you need to score to win.”
On Jim Larranaga saying this style of game was no surprise: “The two of us have obviously had games like this before, going back to George Mason and UNC Wilmington. It was one of those games where you grind it out, tough scoring, with both teams very well prepared, and somebody making a play at the end. They’re having one of those magical years where something’s going to happen for them to turn it their way. Kenny Kadji’s three was big. It was one of the very few ball screen mistakes that we made in the game…and he hit a big shot.”
Miami coach Jim Larranaga
Overall thoughts: “I thought it was just a tremendous defensive battle. I’ve known Brad Brownell for a long time, and every time our teams have gone head-to-head, it’s been very much like that. It was not surprising, it was expected, and our team needed to defend them as well as we possibly could because we knew they were going to defend us very, very well. It’s one of those games that’s not pretty, but it shows an awful lot of competitive spirit by both teams.
“I thought it was an exciting game at the end, with Trey McKinney Jones taking the charge and making a free throw, Kenny Kadji making a three, Rion Brown making a driving layup and a free throw. Everything that we could possibly do, we did. We were fortunate we were able to get some key stops at that time.
"This is one of those games that if you get frustrated and angry because your shot’s not going or a call doesn’t go your way or what have you, it’s very easy for the team to get frustrated and lose its composure. But we were able to stick together, and that makes a huge difference. I thought both teams did a terrific job of that.”
On how tough it is to play at Littlejohn Coliseum:
“This is at least my eighth time here. I was at Virginia (as an assistant) during the Ralph Sampson and Olden Polynice era. We came down here and had some incredible games. This school has great basketball tradition, and this team is very, very tough.”
On the three-pointer hit by Kenny Kadji: “Yeah, exactly. We drew it up exactly that way. (laughter) I don’t even remember what happened. It’s one of those things where there are no plays. It’s just ‘play basketball.’ We must have called 35 plays, and not a single one was scored off of the play. It’s the players. Rion Brown, he drove it to the basket, hit one, and got fouled. Durand Scott drove into the lane and threw it back out to Kenny. He buried a three. It’s not like we ran a set play, someone got separation, and hit a jumper.
"This is just tough, hard-nosed competitors going at each other from start to finish, kind of like (Jordan) Roper did. Roper caught the ball, took a dribble, and banged in a jumper. Maybe that’s the plan, to get him the ball, but really the players are the ones that rose to the occasion today.”
- Coming into the game, K.J. McDaniels had scored in double figures in six of Clemson's last seven games. He made just 1-of-11 shots against Miami.
- Clemson's 5-for-13 free throw performance included a 3-for-8 mark by Devin Booker, who finished the game with 11 points and 10 rebounds.
- The Tigers scored 11 points off 13 Miami turnovers. Clemson turned the ball over just six times.
- Jordan Roper was 8-of-11 from the floor. The rest of the team combined for 9-of-45 shooting - 20 percent.
- Miami dominated the boards 43-27, but scored just eight points off 11 offensive rebounds.
- Miami finished the game with a 7-1 run after Clemson had led 42-38 with under two minutes remaining.
- Miami won for just the second time in its last seven trips to Littlejohn Coliseum, and for the second time in its last seven games against Clemson overall.
- Clemson has now played four teams in the top nine of the current AP poll - No. 2 Duke, No. 3 Miami, No. 5 Gonzaga and No. 9 Arizona.