More times than not, the season after the best one in program history is going to be referenced in a sentence that includes the word "rebuilding" more times than anyone can keep track of.
Most figured this to be the case with the 2013-14 Miami Hurricanes, which lost five seniors and All-American guard Shane Larkin from the squad that claimed the ACC's regular season and tournament championships in 2012. But in an effort to combat the rapid spread of the R word, Jim Larranaga has lined up an army of elite transfers to help cushion the blow of the mass exodus in Coral Gables.
The latest addition is Sheldon McClellan, a talented 6'4 guard who would have been Texas' leading returning scorer (13.5 ppg) had he chosen to return to Austin. Instead, McClellan announced Monday that he had picked the 'Canes over the likes of Oregon, Marquette and LSU.
McClellan drew some consistent criticism last season for his poor shot selection, but much of that can be attributed to him having to shoulder so much of the scoring load left behind by Myck Kabongo's unexpected absence. A year of work under Larranaga and a more talented group of players around him should help alleviate the affliction.
While McClellan will have to sit out the 2013-14 season per NCAA transfer rules, the same can't be said for former DePaul big man Donnavan Kirk. Kirk actually began his career at Miami, where he played sparingly for two seasons before making the move to the Windy City. He posted improved numbers for the Blue Demons and figures to see far more playing time in his second stint at The U.
Also hoping to see the court in a Hurricanes uniform this season is former Kansas State point guard Angel Rodrigues, who is attempting to obtain a hardship waver from the NCAA so he doesn't have to sit out a year. Rodriguez, who went to high school in Miami, averaged 11.4 points and 5.2 assists in his sophomore season for the Wildcats. If eligible, he would almost certainly assume the lead-guard role left behind by Larkin.