No shoe-in: Miami's Pack benched for time after shoe blowout

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Miami guard Nijel Pack celebrates after scoring against Connecticut during the first half of a Final Four college basketball game in the NCAA Tournament on Saturday, April 1, 2023, in Houston. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

HOUSTON – Nijel Pack might need to up his shoe game.

The Miami guard was relegated to the bench for part of the second half of the Hurricanes’ Final Four loss to UConn on Saturday night after busting a sneaker.

“One of my shoes that I was wearing, it ended up breaking where I couldn't tie my shoe,” he said.

Pack left the game with about 14 minutes left and was seen on the bench holding some sneakers and talking to staff as they scrambled to find a replacement.

Soon, multiple members of Miami’s staff could be seen sprinting to the bench with different shoes for him to try.

Finally they found a winner and he returned to action with just under 10 minutes remaining.

Though he looked antsy on the bench as they found him a new pair, Pack said he wasn't upset with the delay.

“They were running their butts off from the locker room to the court — and we know how far of a run that is — to grab the right shoes and things like that,” he said. “So I appreciate their effort.”

Pack finished with eight points and three rebounds in 31 minutes. ___

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