Wednesday, February 06, 2002

Long trip for MU




By Ian Duthie
Enquirer contributor

        OXFORD — Today's game at Buffalo's Alumni Arena is one coach Charlie Coles and the Miami basketball team dread. It is not the opponent that is so troublesome — the journey to get to the game is the bigger problem.

        Buffalo, which in its fourth season is the newest member of the Mid-American Conference, is the longest road trip for Miami in a conference that buses to all its MAC games. No matter the outcome tonight, the “reward” for Miami is to hop right back on the bus and make the 500-mile return trip to Oxford, as classes await the players Thursday morning. The one-game trip is doubly difficult, because it gives Miami only one day of preparation for Saturday's home game against Toledo after the team spends Thursday recovering from the road trip.

        “It has been more than a coincidence that the teams (around the MAC) that have longer to prepare have been better, no matter what their record,” Coles said.

        The reality today for Miami (8-12, 5-4), which is 1-8 on the road, is 20 hours on a bus to play a two-hour game in cold, cloudy Buffalo.

        Last season the RedHawks lost 66-61 at Buffalo, accounting for half of the Bulls' conference victories. The RedHawks had defeated the Bulls 74-42 in Oxford a month earlier.

       



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