Hello Miami sports fans,

After almost a month off from blogging, I'm back at it until the conclusion of spring semester.

I hope everyone had a great holiday and new year! I spent my break at home in Toledo, Ohio with family and friends. I also gained about 10 pounds due to my mother's delicious cooking. She is a retired gourmet chef and proud graduate of the Le Cordon Bleu cooking school in London, so you can imagine my meals were rich and bountiful (rack of lamb, king crab legs, Kobe beef burgers, mashed potatoes with seared onions and chives... you get the point). Did I mention I renewed my gym membership this week?

Anyways, back to business. The following is what you may have missed over break and a few things to look forward to in the coming weeks.

First, we have a new athletic director David Sayler. He replaces Brad Bates, who left to become Boston College's AD in the fall. Sayler comes from the University of South Dakota where he served as the athletic department's leader for two-and-a-half years. Click HERE to get to know him a little better.

Last night I covered the men's basketball team. They fell to UMass by a single point, 70-69. They didn't have the length and size the Minutemen had, but their toughness and perseverance kept them in the game and even game them a chance to win in the final seconds. First-year coach John Cooper has this team headed in the right direction and I wouldn't be surprised if they exceeded expectations in conference play. Miami opens MAC play at home against Northern Illinois Wednesday, Jan. 9 at 7 p.m.

The women's basketball team has also been performing well as of late. They split a pair of games in the Caribbean Classic in Cancun, Mexico Dec. 21 through Dec. 22. The RedHawks lost to Creighton, but responded with a 62-49 win over Nevada. They continue non-conference play Saturday, Jan. 5 at Duquesne. Game time is 2 p.m. Miami opens conference play on the road Thursday, Jan. 10 at Ball State. After that, the team travels to play Western Michigan before returning home to play Ohio Thursday, Jan. 17 at 7 p.m.

The sixth-ranked hockey team defeated Ohio State for the third time this season to open the Three Rivers Classic Friday, Dec. 28 in Pittsburgh, Pa. (One of the team's wins vs. OSU was a shootout win, so it goes in the books as a tie, but let's just call it a win). Miami then lost to Robert Morris 1-0 in the championship game, but still bolsters an impressive 12-4-4 overall record. The RedHawks are off until Friday Jan. 11 when they travel to play a two-game set against Northern Michigan. Miami returns home Friday, Jan. 25 for another two-gamer against Bowling Green. Watch out people, this young and talented bunch has a chance to go all the way.

All three of Miami's synchronized skating teams are off until Jan. 11-12 when they travel to Fraser, Mich. The junior team will compete at the Junior World Qualifier Jan. 11-12, while the senior and collegiate teams will be competing at the same location in the Mid-America Championships Jan. 12-13.

The women's swimming and diving team is competing in Boca Raton, Fla. today against James Madison, while the men's team is off until Friday, Jan. 11 when it travels to compete against Cincinnati.

The Miami women's tennis team continues its spring season Saturday, Jan. 19 with a match against Indiana in Cincinnati at the Western Hills Tennis Center. Matches begin at 11 a.m.

-Follow me on Twitter at @RedHawkReMarx and feel free to email me if you have any questions or comments at marxpc@miamioh.edu.