After leading the Miami Hurricanes to their first regular season ACC title, coach Jim Larranaga was named Coach of the Year by the Atlantic Coast Conference Tuesday. Larranaga received 75 of 77 possible votes from the Atlantic Coast Sports Media Association (ACSMA).
In just his second season at UM, the former George Mason coach guided the Canes to a 24-6 record, including 15-3 in conference play. The 24 wins tied a school record.
The Canes earned possibly the best win in school history in January, knocking off then-top ranked Duke 90-63 in front of a packed house at home. The win helped catapult the Canes to a number 2 ranking in a matter of weeks, the best ranking in school history.
Currently ranked ninth, the Canes are among the favorites in this week's ACC tournament, and will likely get a very high seed in the upcoming NCAA tournament.
In a statement released by UM, Larranaga said, "Although being Coach of the Year is a great honor, especially being chosen amongst a host of great coaches in the ACC, this is really a team honor. The success of a coach is based on the success of his team, and I've got great players and they're a real joy to be around."
Larranaga is not the only Cane receiving conference honors this week. Guard Durand Scott was named ACC Defensive Player of the Year on Tuesday, edging out teammate Shane Larkin by two votes.
"Durand Scott is one of the greatest competitors I've ever been around and you really see that on the defensive end of the floor," Larranaga said Tuesday. "He takes great pride in guarding the other team's best player on the perimeter. He takes great pride in playing harder than anybody else. I am so proud to be able to say that I coached Durand Scott for two years."
Larkin was selected to the All-ACC first team on Monday, with forward Kenny Kadji earning second team honors and Scott earning an honorable mention. Scott and Larkin were named to the ACC's All-Defensive team.
"Shane Larkin is all about winning," Larranaga said in a press release. "He does everything we ask of him to win the ball game. He's been a great leader. He has played at a very, very high level consistently throughout the season and is very, very deserving of this recognition. There are a lot of great players in this league and he is certainly one of them."
The Canes are off to Greensboro, NC, for the 2013 ACC tournament. Miami will play the winner of the first round Boston College-Georgia Tech match-up on Friday at noon.