OXFORD, Ohio (AP) Raphiael Putney scored 20 points and Chaz Williams made a late, go-ahead jumper to lift Massachusetts over Miami (Ohio) 70-69 Wednesday night in nonconference action.
Jesse Morgan had 12 and Williams finished with 10 for UMass (9-3), which has won six straight games. The Minutemen also secured their seventh straight road victory, the program's longest road streak since the 1997-98 season.
UMass led 37-29 at intermission but watched Miami (5-7) open the second half on a 9-2 run, cutting the deficit to 39-38. From there, the teams battled through eight lead changes and five ties until Williams' jumper gave UMass the lead for good, 70-69, with 1:12 left.
Miami had a chance to tie but Quinten Rollins missed a free throw and Will Sullivan could not convert a layup as time expired. The Redhawks shot 2 for 9 over the final 6 minutes.
Allen Roberts led Miami with 21 points.
Thanks to his illustrious career at Miami, Sean Taylor caught the eyes of Joe Gibbs and the Redskins heading into the 2004 NFL Draft.
Not surprisingly, though, Washington wasn't the only franchise interested in adding a do-it-all, safety-in-a-linebacker's-body prospect to their defense.
In a terrific look-back at that draft from Sports Illustrated — a draft in which a record six Miami products went in the first 21 picks — you'll find this excerpt:
But at the last minute, the Browns, owners of the No. 7 pick, called asking to trade up. Butch Davis, Cleveland’s coach and EVP, had previously been the head coach at Miami and had recruited all six of these Hurricane prospects out of high school...
[Vinny] Cerrato says the Browns were coming for Taylor. Davis is more diplomatic about it: “It was probably about 60-40 that we would’ve taken Sean [over Winslow],” he says. He wanted to know what it’d cost to get Taylor. But Washington wasn’t budging. “There was no interest whatsoever,” Cerrato says. “We wanted Sean Taylor.”
Cleveland also reportedly contacted the Giants about their fourth overall selection so they could skip the 'Skins entirely, but New York ended up orchestrating their own deal to land Eli Manning.
Fortunately, the Burgundy and Gold stayed in place and got Taylor despite the calls. Often times, trading back in the draft is an attractive option. This time around, however, that option paled in comparison to the opportunity to acquire Taylor.
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Were the countless mock drafts not enough? Do you need a little more explanation before the nail-biter that is Round 1? NBC Sports has you covered.
Representatives from every branch of the NBC Sports Regional Network will be breaking down the 2019 NFL Draft on Thursday, April 25th just hours before one of the most anticipated and nerve-wracking shows in all of sports. Beginning at 3 p.m. ET, experts and insiders will preview Round 1 and the draft needs of their network's respective teams.
So obviously, we've got Redskins insider JP Finlay on set and ready to discuss what's in store for the 2019 Burgundy and Gold.
<<CHECK OUT NBC SPORTS WASHINGTON'S LATEST NFL MOCK DRAFT>>
The special will be available exclusively on the MyTeams by NBC Sports App. If you haven't already downloaded the MyTeams App, you can do so right now, RIGHT HERE.
How to watch NBC Sports's 2019 Draft Preview Live Stream
When: Thursday, April 25th
Time: 3 p.m. ET
Who: JP Finlay and team-specific NFL experts across the Regional Sports Network
Steam: MyTeams App
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