Miami guard Nijel Pack played himself out of his shoes, quite literally, in his quest to help the Hurricanes past UConn in their Final Four game on Saturday. In the second half of the Hurricanes' game against the Huskies, Pack broke one of his shoes and did not have a replacement pair handy, prompting pandemonium on the Miami bench as they scrambled to find him a new set.
One student manager could be seen on the CBS broadcast with Pack's broken pair in hand sprinting up the tunnel to the locker room area in search of new kicks. He then sprinted back to the bench, only for Pack to have to break the news that the replacement the manager found were not his size. The hero of the day then sprinted back up the tunnel and retrieved a pair more to Pack's liking, and he checked back into the game shortly thereafter.
Play-by-play of Miami's... "Shoegate" 😂 pic.twitter.com/Nr46tuzxb7— CBS Sports (@CBSSports) April 2, 2023
All told, Pack, who plays the third-most minutes per game on this Miami team and is the third-leading scorer, sat for several minutes while the shoe snafu played out in real time. All the while, Miami lost precious time in its efforts to mount a comeback against the devastatingly effective Huskies, who at one point led by 20 points in the second half before rolling to a 72-59 victory.
Pack was one of the most instrumental figures for Miami this postseason in leading the team to its first-ever Final Four appearance. In the first round against Drake, he scored 21 points and added two steals. In the Sweet 16 vs. Houston, he scored a team-high 26 points and grabbed four boards. Pack transferred to Miami last offseason by way of Kansas State after signing a lucrative NIL deal worth close to $1 million.