We’re getting to the stretch run of the ACC schedule. Two teams, Virginia
Tech and Florida State, have played half of their ACC games, and the other 10
teams have played seven. Duke and UNC sit at the top of the ACC
standings, while Georgia Tech, Florida State and Virginia have basically played
their way out of the NCAA tournament picture, with Boston College possibly
joining that group soon. Everyone else is squarely in the hunt.
Current ACC Standings
RPI Data from RealTimeRPI.com,
as of 2/4/08, 2:40 p.m.
Recent Games (click score
70, Miami 68
89, FSU 80
85, Virginia 75
|College Park, Md.|
91, BC 69
|Chapel Hill, N.C.|
92, NC State 72
88, GT 86
72, Virginia 65 (OT)
88, Miami 73
78, BC 56
State 67, Wake Forest 65
84, FSU 73 (OT)
|02/05/08||Virginia Tech @ NC State||Raleigh, N.C.||ESPNU
|02/06/08||GT @ Wake Forest||Winston-Salem, N.C.|| ACC
|Maryland @ BC||Chestnut Hill, Mass.||ESPNU
|Florida State @ Miami||Coral Gables, Fla.|| ACC
|Duke @ North Carolina||Chapel Hill, N.C.||RAYCOM
|02/07/08||Clemson @ Virginia||Charlottesville, Va.||ESPN2
|02/09/08||Boston College @ Duke||Durham, N.C.||CBS
|Miami @ Virginia Tech||Blacksburg, Va.||ACC
|Virginia @ Wake Forest||Winston-Salem, N.C.||ABC
|GT @ Connecticut||Storrs, Conn.||ESPN
|NC State @ Maryland||College Park, Md.||RAYCOM
|02/10/08||Clemson @ UNC||Chapel Hill, N.C.||FSN
CSN = Comcast SportsNet;
CSS = Comcast Sports Southeast; FSN = Fox SportsNet;
FSNS = Fox SportsNet South; NESN = New England Sports Network;
RSN = Regional Cable Partners (check listings)
A Look Around the League…
Duke (19-1, 7-0)
Duke had two more games this past week, and picked up two more victories. The
Blue Devils beat NC State 92-72, then knocked off Miami 88-73. Both games were
in Durham. With the two wins, Duke holds on to the top spot in the ACC
standings, and are playing better than they have in quite some time.
Duke is a very impressive team, especially when you consider that they have
no legit inside threat. They start three guards and two small forwards. That
could hurt them when they play someone with a lot of inside presence, but for
now, they’re rolling.
They’ll get that inside test this Wednesday night, when they travel to Chapel
Hill to take on UNC. The Tar Heels have a number of inside players than can give
Duke fits, led by Tyler Hansbrough. After that, Duke hosts Boston College on
North Carolina (21-1, 6-1)
UNC blew out Boston College 91-69 on Thursday, then slipped by Florida State
84-73 in overtime on Sunday. They are a very impressive team offensively. No one
can seem to slow the Tar Heels down.
However, they now have a question mark at point guard. Ty Lawson suffered a
high ankle sprain early in the FSU game, and spent the rest of the game on the
bench. Backup point guard Bobby Frasor is already out for the season, which
means Quentin Thomas will now be running the point. Thomas is an experienced
senior and a solid player, but he was the #3 point guard for a reason.
UNC hosts Duke at home on Wednesday night in a huge ACC battle. They get
Clemson at home on Sunday.
Virginia Tech (14-8, 5-3)
Tech is the ACC’s most surprising team this year. The Hokies have won three in a
row and six out of eight to run their ACC record to 5-3, good for third place in
the conference. They beat Florida State 89-80 on Tuesday night, then completed
the season sweep of in-state rival Virginia in Blacksburg on Saturday.
There are a number of reasons the Hokies are playing well, but the main
reason could be the improvement of freshmen guards Hank Thorns and Malcolm
Delaney. Tech was terrible in turnover margin for most of the season, but not in
the last three games. They broke even at Boston College, and were +5 against
Florida State and +3 against Virginia.
The Hokies need Top 50 RPI wins to build their NCAA tournament resume. They’ll
get that chance this week when they travel to NC State (43 RPI) on Tuesday, and
host Miami (39 RPI) on Saturday.
Clemson (16-5, 4-3)
Clemson is one of three ACC teams that would definitely be in the NCAA
tournament if the season ended today. The Tigers suffered a tough 75-72 loss to
Miami on Tuesday, but rebounded to blow out Boston College 78-56 at home. The
Tigers are a good team that is capable of beating anyone in the conference.
The Tigers are a banged up team right now. Inside players James Mays and
Trevor Booker, as well as point guard Demontez Stitt, are all suffering from
Unfortunately for the Tigers, they have a tough road down the stretch. Six of
their last nine games are on the road, including two this week at UVA and UNC.
Maryland (14-8, 4-3)
Maryland is another ACC team that still has a chance to make the NCAA
tournament. After an 0-2 start in ACC play, the Terps have rebounded to win four
of their last five games. They beat Virginia 85-75 on Wednesday night, then
knocked off Georgia Tech 88-86 in Atlanta on Saturday.
The Terps have a very strong inside game with Bombale Osby and James Gist,
and they also get good guard play with Greivis Vasquez and Eric Hayes. The only
thing they lack is a true outside shooter.
Maryland plays at Boston College on Wednesday, then gets NC State at home on
Saturday. They have a chance to pick up two wins this week.
NC State (14-7, 3-4)
NC State lost to Duke 92-72 in Durham on Thursday, but rebounded to beat Wake
Forest 67-65. Ben McCauley’s putback dunk at the end of the game propelled them
to the win over the Demon Deacons and kept their NCAA tournament hopes alive.
NC State is an up and down team. You never know how they are going to come
out and perform. However, they’ve been much more consistent lately. To give you
an idea of how close the ACC is, four of NC State’s last five games have been
decided by three points or less.
The Wolfpack host Virginia Tech on Tuesday, then play at Maryland on
Saturday. If they can beat the Hokies and get to .500 at the halfway point, that
would be tremendous considering how poorly they have played at times.
Wake Forest (13-7, 3-4)
Wake Forest played two games this past week, and the margin of victory in
each was two points. The Demon Deacons beat Miami 70-68, then dropped a
heartbreaker to NC State 67-65. Despite the loss to the Wolfpack, Wake is still
in a position to finish in the top half of the ACC standings.
Wake is a very young basketball team. They have no seniors, and start two
outstanding freshmen in Jeff Teague and James Johnson. Both players are future
stars in the ACC.
The Demon Deacons have a great opportunity this week to get above .500 in ACC
play. They host Georgia Tech on Wednesday, then get Virginia at home on
Saturday. Dino Gaudio has done a great job this season following the offseason
death of Skip Prosser.
Boston College (12-8, 3-4)
Boston College is a team that is going downhill quickly. They have lost four
games in a row after starting out 3-0 in the ACC. Three of the four losses have
been by 18 points or more. This week BC lost to UNC 91-69, then got flattened by
Clemson 78-56. This could be the worst team in the ACC right now. Remember, UVA’s
only ACC win came by 18 points over BC.
With the way they are playing, the Eagles have little hope for an NCAA
tournament bid. The loss of Jared Dudley, Sean Marshall and Sean Williams is
finally catching up to them.
BC hosts Maryland on Wednesday, then plays at Duke on Saturday. They could be
looking at two more losses, which would take their losing streak to six.
Georgia Tech (10-10, 3-4)
After winning three ACC games in a row, Georgia Tech lost a heartbreaker to
Maryland 88-86 on Saturday afternoon. The loss pretty much ended any hope of
making the NCAA tournament. They still have a chance to finish in the top half
of the conference, but they aren’t going to have enough wins overall.
It doesn’t help Georgia Tech that they play six of their last 10 games on the
road, including the next three. They play at Wake Forest on Wednesday night,
then travel to UConn for an out-of-conference matchup on Saturday.
Miami (15-6, 2-5)
After starting the season hot, Miami has lost five of their last six
basketball games. Their latest losses came at Wake Forest 70-68, and at Duke
88-73. However, don’t let their record fool you. They are a good team. They have
played four of their seven ACC games on the road, and one of their home games
was against UNC.
The Hurricanes do have a very manageable schedule down the stretch. Starting
with this Wednesday’s game against Florida State, they have a chance to creep
back up in the standings. But it must start on Wednesday against FSU, otherwise
the ‘Canes are going to become this year’s version of last year’s Clemson
Tigers. After the FSU game, Miami travels to Virginia Tech.
Florida State (13-10, 2-6)
Florida State was run out of the gym in an 89-80 loss to Virginia Tech on
Tuesday night. However, they followed that up by playing UNC tough, losing at
home to the Tar Heels 84-73 in overtime.
The UNC loss was especially difficult for FSU. They are a perimeter oriented
offense and a very solid three-point shooting team. They were 8-of-11 in the
second half from the outside against Virginia Tech. However, against UNC, they
were just 6-of-31, including a terrible 1-of-9 performance by point guard Toney
FSU’s only game this week is at Miami on Wednesday.
Virginia (11-9, 1-6)
The Hoos dug themselves even deeper into the cellar this past week, losing
85-75 at Maryland and 72-65 in overtime at Virginia Tech. UVA is now 0-3 in ACC
overtime games this year, with two of those losses coming at the hands of the
UVA is a team built around one player, All-ACC point guard Sean Singletary.
No one else is helping much, or at least not consistently. Unfortunately
Singletary is banged up with a hip pointer, and he doesn’t appear to be getting
The Hoos could also be in the middle of a team implosion. Freshman forward
Mike Scott made some
comments to the Washington Post following Saturday’s game that can’t make
UVA fans happy. Scott basically said that Dave Leitao doesn’t give his players a
chance to play through mistakes, whereas Seth Greenberg does, and that’s why VT
looks confident, while UVA isn’t having any success.