Where: Conte Forum, Chestnut Hill, MA
When: February 17th, 9:00 PM
Records: UNC 22-4, 8-3 ACC; Boston College 18-7, 9-3 ACC
It does not get any bigger than this.
UNC and BC both are coming off disappointing losses and also sitting at three losses in the ACC at the top of the standings. The last time UNC lost to Virginia Tech they had to travel to Clemson and face a 17-1 team also coming off a disappointing loss. UNC won that game by 22 as we found out Clemson was exactly who we thought they were. Needless to say BC is not Clemson and despite the loss of Sean Williams who would have been crucial in this matchup, they have acquitted themselves well after an early slate of bad losses in their out of conference schedule.
The primary questions tonight center on the play of Jared Dudley who is the favorite for conference player of the year. Dudley had a rough game against Duke and did more talking about the referees than anything else. How he bounces back will be crucial for BC’s offense. One matchup that could be key for both offenses is that between BC’s Tyrese Rice and Ty Lawson at point guard(which will undoubtedly lend itself to some stupid key to the game from ESPN about the “Battle of the Tys” but I digress.) Both guards are quick with Rice being more experienced. To what extent these two guards contain one another will impact how the half court offense is ultimately executed.
As for the interior game UNC should be prepared to face a physical and methodical team that will bang, grab, and generally frustrate the heck of you during he course of the game. Brandan Wright was deemed questionable for today’s game with a bad shoulder. If Deon Thompson and Alex Stepheson come in and play like they did versus Arizona then this will be no big deal. That being said, I am not sure how well Wright does against a physical team so this could be a blessing in disguise. BC’s defense sans Sean Williams is not as good as it once was so UNC would be wise to pound the ball inside. And not that I ever believe referees can cost you a game, I would be a fool I if I did not think that the substandard officiating that the ACC is so famous for at this point will not somehow rear it’s ugly head in this game.
I can only hope UNC makes it so the foul calling or lack thereof is inconsuquential.
UNC 84 BC 75