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Mike Maniscalco

Quick hits: Hurricanes, Duke & recruiting

Posted February 9, 2013
Updated February 11, 2013

Getting to know you

The Carolina Hurricanes could have used the benefit of a training camp and exhibition season as much as, and probably more than, anyone this year. Head Coach Kirk Muller has yet to have a full training camp as a NHL boss and the organization made two major changes to its line-up in the off-season by trading for Jordan Staal and signing free agent sniper Alexander Semin. In the first week, the chemistry between Eric Staal and his new line mate Semin seemed a click off and goalie Cam Ward was a little rusty going about eight months without real game action. The result for the first five games of the season was uneven play, and a power play that was sputtering. A few weeks later, with some tweeking to the line-up, and a fortunate three day break in the schedule to allow the coaching staff some valuable teaching time, has the Hurricanes playing a better brand of hockey.

Oh captain...

Eric Staal has been red-hot scoring in eight consecutive games. The captain of the Canes is healthy, told me he trained a lot this off-season prepping for the year, and the fact that he was itching to get on the ice could be why he has reversed a trend of starting slow. Also, adding a player like Semin on the wing and having his brother Jordan Staal in the locker room has made a difference on and off the ice. If Staal can keep this pace up through the shortened schedule, Carolina should count on having playoff hockey to look forward to.

Tradition matters

Mike Krzyzewski had to reinvent his team this year after Ryan Kelly was forced to the bench with a foot injury and the new look Devils have adapted nicely. Duke is still a top five team and dispatched NC State this week. Many people think that the Devils are the class of the ACC. Nine out of ten times this is the case, but the Miami Hurricanes have been the best team since conference play has started. At the ACC media days, Miami big man Reggie Johnson told me that if if his team had 'UNC' on the uniforms instead of 'the U' that people would have picked them to win the conference. With the talent level on his team Johnson had no doubt a team from the state of North Carolina would have started the year ranked in the top ten. Johnson should know a little about this, he grew up in Winston-Salem. At the time of writing this, Miami has yet to lose an ACC game and gave Duke a beating it hadn't received in over two decades. CBS basketball analyst Dan Bonner told me because it is Miami and not a usual ACC basketball power, people have been hesitant to give the Canes their due. Miami has moved into the AP top ten and if the U can keep playing at this level, they might not get the recognition of being the best in the ACC but something much better, the championship hardware that comes with winning the league.

No, not number 1.

For six consecutive weeks the number one team atop the AP poll has lost within the week after being selected the top team in the country. This week #1 Indiana, #2 Florida, #3 Michigan and #5 Kansas all were beaten. Look out Duke, you might get a third crack at the top spot.   

Proper grading system

Recruiting is the lifeblood of every college sport, and football recruiting has becoming bigger than ever. It is understandable, we love football in this country, but I humbly suggest a change to the grading system. Classes cannot receive any kind of grading until year three of the class. While most of the star players will see the field, the true measure of the class is when they actually get into games and play, something most freshmen never get a chance to do.

Not so fine whine

Yes, the officials could have thrown a flag on the last offensive play the San Francisco 49ers ran in Super Bowl XLVII, but they didn't. Yet San Francisco head coach Jim Harbaugh keeps complaining about the non-call costing his team the title. I argue it was a combination of the Ravens building up a 28-6 lead, and yes there were a few bad calls on the 49ers last possession but those were the plays that were sent in to Colin Kaepernick. Haven't heard Jim Harbaugh's reasoning for not getting his mobile quarterback out of the pocket on those last few plays, I am sure it was not Harbaugh's fault, just ask him.

Also if Jim would take time to notice that every time he complains about how the refs did him wrong, he is taking away from the title that the opposing coach won. If you didn't hear, it is his older brother John.

3 Comments

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  • NCSU84 Feb 11, 2013

    Brothers like to complain to each other....

  • PanthersFan45 Feb 10, 2013

    On the first point, the Canes made many off-season changes and yes some time for Muller to try out different lines would have been helpful, but the team is clicking now and showing good chemistry. Last Point about Jim Harbaugh, he needs to let it go. Yes it was a bad call, but the 49ers dug a deep hole early and I would agree they NEVER tried running Frank Gore or Colin Kaepernick from in close on that final drive.

  • StunGunn Feb 10, 2013

    It sure would have been helpful for Muller to have a full season to work with the Canes, but I like the additions of Jordan Staal and Semin, and Ellis has proven to be a good back-up goalie. I hope the Canes make the playoffs this year, they have the talent to make a good run.

    K has shown why he is a HOF coach with the adjustments he's made since Kelly went down.

TV
  • NCAA: Division II Championship: Indiana (Pa.) vs. Florida Southern

    Today at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NCAAT: Louisville v. Michigan State

    Tomorrow at 2:20 am on WRAL-TV

  • NCAAT: Duke v. Gonzaga

    Tomorrow at 5:05 pm on WRAL-TV

Scoreboard
Local
Final
WAS 110
CHA 107
Final
LOU 75
NCSU 65
Final
DUKE 63
UTAH 57
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
ATL
7:00pm Tonight
CAR
NJD
Final
ATL 4
BOS 2
Final
STL 5
NYM 4
Final
PHI 0
NYY 10
Final
MIN 2
PIT 4
Final
WAS 1
STL 1
4th
BAL 0
TAM 0
 
Final
TOR 4
DET 1
Final
CHC 6
CWS 3
Final
OAK 7
TEX 6
Final
ANA 2
ARI 7
Final
ARI 3
CLE 2
6:05pm Friday
HOU 0
MIA 0
 
Final
KAN 5
SEA 1
Final
SDP 7
COL 5
Final
CIN 6
MIL 8
Final
LOS 4
SFG 8
1:05pm Today
NYY
BAL
 
1:05pm Today
TAM
BOS
 
1:05pm Today
MIA
HOU
 
1:05pm Today
MIN
PHI
 
1:05pm Today
DET
STL
 
1:05pm Today
PIT
TOR
 
1:07pm Today
TOR
ATL
 
1:10pm Today
NYM
WAS
 
4:05pm Today
CIN
CHC
 
4:05pm Today
MIL
CLE
 
4:05pm Today
CHC
COL
 
4:05pm Today
CWS
OAK
 
4:05pm Today
TEX
SDP
 
4:05pm Today
SEA
SFG
 
4:10pm Today
ARI
KAN
 
4:10pm Today
ANA
LOS
 
Final
WAS 110
CHA 107
Final
ORL 97
DET 111
Final
PHI 98
LAC 119
Final
NYK 92
BOS 96
Final
BRK 106
CLE 98
Final
TOR 94
LAL 83
Final
ATL 99
MIA 86
Final
MEM 84
GSW 107
Final
HOU 120
MIN 110
Final
NOP 102
SAC 88
Final
SAN 94
DAL 76
Final
DEN 107
UTA 91
Final
PHO 81
POR 87
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
ATL
8:00pm Tonight
CHI
NYK
8:30pm Tonight
MIL
GSW
9:00pm Tonight
UTA
OKC
10:00pm Tonight
POR
DEN
Final
GONZ 74
UCLA 62
Final
LOU 75
NCSU 65
Final
DUKE 63
UTAH 57
Final
NARZ 74
KSU 73
Final
OKLA 58
MSU 62
6:09pm Tonight
WISC
ARZ
7:30pm Tonight
YALE
CAN
8:49pm Tonight
KENT
ND
Final
MIN 4
CAL 2
Final
CHI 2
CLB 5
Final
EDM 4
DAL 0
12:30pm Today
WAS
NAS
1:00pm Today
NYI
ANA
1:00pm Today
PIT
ARI
1:00pm Today
BOS
NYR
1:00pm Today
PHI
SJS
2:00pm Today
DET
TAM
7:00pm Tonight
MON
FLA
7:00pm Tonight
CAR
NJD
7:00pm Tonight
TOR
OTT
8:00pm Tonight
STL
CLB
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIN
LOS
9:00pm Tonight
COL
BUF
 
10:00pm Tonight
VAN
DAL