Larrivee: Marquette's opponent Miami 'outstanding,' but with injured inside game

CREATED Mar 25, 2013

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MILWAUKEE - Marquette has endured a season's worth of heart-rendering basketball within the last four days as they won two wild NCAA tournament games over Davidson and Butler.

What they face next, however, may be their toughest challenge of the 2013 season so far, the Miami Hurricanes.  The teams play Thursday at 6:15 p.m.

"Miami, they're outstanding," said Newsradio 620 WTMJ's Wayne Larrivee, who called the Hurricanes NCAA games on radio this weekend for Dial Global Radio. 

"They're long.  They're a big team...They're athletic.  They are the real deal.  They should have been a No. 1 seed ahead of Gonzaga.  "

The Hurricanes survived their own challenge Sunday night in defeating Illinois, 63-59.

However, the wins this weekend came with a cost - injuries to their inside game which Marquette's big players like Chris Otule and Davante Gardner could exploit.

"The problem they may have, a couple of big men, one (Reggie Johnson) suffered a cut above his eye," said Larrivee on Newsradio 620 WTMJ's "Wisconsin's Morning News." 

"Another (Julian Gamble) suffered a sprained ankle and didn't play a whole lot in the second half.  I'm not sure what their status will be going forward."

Gamble and Johnson are two of Miami's five players who are 6' 10" or taller.

Shane Larkin is Miami's leading scorer, producing 14.6 points per game from the point guard slot.