The Miami Hurricanes have three top-level high schoolers coming into Coral Gables for the 2014-15 season, but it could be someone out of the junior college ranks who makes the biggest difference next year.
Ivan Uceda will give coach Jim Larranaga and the Hurricanes a solid inside player who can also step outside and drain the occasional three-point jumper. Uceda is originally from Spain and brings that classic European game basketball fans are accustomed to seeing. Uceda played at Harcum College — a Junior College in Pennsylvania — last season and was a reliable scorer at 16 points per game and efficient offensive player at 59 percent shooting.
Larranaga has done a great job recruiting for next season and having someone like Uceda really gives the team a lot of balance it did not have last year. Uceda will pair well with fellow 2014 recruit forward Omar Sherman inside. He will also free Sherman up because he will force defenses to stretch out and guard him outside. Uceda also gives recruit guard James Palmer options when he runs the offense. Uceda’s talents are unlike anything Miami has typically had over the past few seasons, and he will definitely be a perfect fit in the balance offense Larranaga is known for.
Miami looks to be a team to be reckoned with in the ACC next season because of the incoming class. If Uceda makes the transition from JUCO to big-time college basketball, there is no telling what kind of season fans will get to witness at The U.