ACC Tournament First Round: Preview

#8 Clemson vs #9 Florida State, 12:00 PM

This is a NCAA elimination game which is not the same thing as a NCAA play in game.  The loser is most definitely NIT bound with the winner hanging their hopes on trying to knock off UNC.  Florida State has Toney Douglas back which seemed to be as much to blame for their five game losing streak than anything else.  Clemson on the other hand can only blame the fact that they are Clemson for winning only of their final 13 games following the 17-0 start.  Clemson swept the Noles which usually trends in favor of the swept team since beating someone three times in one season is not a common occurrence.  Noles are also playing better and at this point a better team than the Tigers.

Florida State 80 Clemson 74

#5 Maryland vs #12 Miami, 2:30 PM

Here is a safe assumption: Maryland has been thinking about playing Miami again ever since that abysmal shooting performance in early January in College Park which essentially cost Maryland not only a Friday bye but a share of the ACC title.  So look for a measure of revenge and the fact the Terps are playing some of the best basketball in the ACC right now.

Maryland 92 Miami 70

#7 Duke vs #10 NC State, 7:00 PM

Duke enters this game without Gerald Henderson which may not be as much of an issue as we would all like to believe.  This game comes down to how well Josh McRoberts deals with Ben McCauley and Brandon Costner.  The point guard position favors NC State with Engin Atsur over Greg Paulus.  Gavin Grant and Courtney Fells become X factors opposite Demarcus Nelson and Jon Scheyer.   Then again it still comes back to the big men and by that I mean rebounding.  That is unless NC State shoots over 65% from the floor then the rebounding will be significantly less important because there will be nothing to rebound on the Wolfpack end.  Something tells me NC State would like to show they can beat Duke after failing to show up in the only meeting this season.

NC State 71 Duke 69

#6 Georgia Tech vs #11 Wake Forest, 9:30 PM

Georgia Tech should win this game, especially if they continue to play as well as they have played in the past week.  That being said this was a team they split with this season and GT has been horrid away from home. Wake Forest continues to get good play from Ishmael Smith at the point and Kyle Visser on the post.  What that all means is I expect the Jackets to see a tougher battle than you might think which could work against GT considering this is the first of four games they would need to win for the title.  Also add the small pressure of GT being out of the NCAA Tournament should they lose and this game should be entertaining.

Georgia Tech 83 Wake 75


12 Responses to ACC Tournament First Round: Preview

  1. C. Michael says:

    Anyone see that Tyler was not actually a unanimous selection for 1st Team ACC?

  2. Tar Heel Fan says:

    What’s funny is this guy basically wrote an article admitting that is a complete idiot for not voting Hansbrough first team. UNC finished tied for first so in my opinion it is difficult not to have him on the first team. And I would take issue with asserting that Singletary was the best PG in the conference.

  3. Chris says:

    I suspect that Duke will have no problem beating State, and may move on further in the bracket more than we would care to think about.

  4. actuarializing says:

    Yep – I’m nervous about Duke’s potential for a run, too. Maybe it’s just the uniform, but it seems like they have the highest combination of talent and “something to prove” in the ACC tourney.

    As for TH not being unanimous, I don’t think there’s much shame in that. He’s certainly unanimous on the all-hype team, but do you Heels really feel he’s much better than he was the day he came on campus? I can’t help but wonder how good he would be with a less strong supporting cast. I’m not saying he’s not an outstanding ACC player, but to not be unanimous first team is not a surprise to me.

    Which brings me to SS … the man has carried Virginia on his back to an 11-5 record. And don’t tell me they got there SOLELY b/c of an easier schedule. What point guard has done more with less talent around him? (And yeah, I know JR is good, but not as good as his scoring average suggests).

  5. C. Michael says:

    As a non-Carolinian (New York), I ask of you Tar Heel Staters for guidance: Who should I root against more, Duke or N.C. St.?

  6. Richard says:

    To C. Michael, I say root against Duke. State is far less of a rival. Furthermore, Sidney Lowe has class and character, and played in one of the ACC’s most memorable NCAA championship games. The other guy, shall we say, has the normal attributes of an inner city street thug and the players to complement his personality.

    To Actuarializing (you must have been a math major), I say that it’s irrelevant that TH wasn’t a unanimous pick. Who cares? I agree that Sean Singletary is an exceptional player on a team that, other than Reynolds, is loaded with mediocrity. If Duke defeats State, they’ll dispense with UVA easily.

    I can’t pull for Duke to win, but somewhere along the way, this year, I fervently want to play those troglodytes again.

  7. C. Michael says:

    Thanks, that’s how I was leaning. I was in Syracuse for UNC’s Sweet 16 an d Elite 8 games in 2005 and the Wolfpack fans I met were quite pleasant, and even supportive!!

  8. jackiemanuel says:

    I hope you are right about the 7:00 game…

  9. williamodouglas says:

    I grew up a Tar Heel fan but I was jumping up and down and cheering both times that NC State won the national title. I don’t know if that sentiment goes the other way, but I understand because Carolina is the main state university and I think that the fans of the other schools get tired of hearing about us.

    With respect to Duke, obviously that is a big rivalvry due to location but it was not even close to being as big when I was at UNC (1983-87) as it is now. Growing up in North Carolina, you didn’t meet many Duke fans back then. They probably have a bigger North Carolina fan base due to the influx of people to Charlotte and the Triangle, but still there is a reason why they love playing in the Meadowlands.

    I think that the rivalry has increased exponentially for 3 reasons. Duke now has almost equal achievements to Carolina, which had not been true since the 1960’s. Second, there is the whole Vitale and ESPN angle. But most importantly is Krzyzewski.

    Vic Bubas was a likeable guy; Bill Foster less so, but I honestly do not know if I can name any figure in all of sports less likeable on the sidelines than Coach K. He has the whole package. He is ugly but not in the likeable way some guys are unattractive. He is ugly in a squirrelly little way. He is whiny. Maybe people from the Midwest don’t notice it as much, but his voice annoys me to no end. Then there is his facial expression which never seems to change from that of a man greatly in need of extra-strength Ex-Lax. Last and of course not least, is his vocabulary which seems greatly in need of some word-of-the-day cards. You certainly don’t need to take Lipreading 101 to know what he is saying.

  10. Chris says:

    For those who think the RPI ratings mean anything, Duke is now 14 and NC State is 115. Moving on to the next game, Virginia is ranked 42. I suspect that Duke wil fare well on a neutral court in both of these games; as much as we don’t like it, K knows how to win in the post-season.

  11. williamodouglas says:

    I think Ish Smith is terrible. He can’t shoot and fakes out his teammates as much as the oppostion.

  12. Tar Heel Fan says:


    I am watching Ish Smith right now and I am going to respectfully disagree with you to the extent that yes he does throw some wild passes but some of the assists he is getting have an Ed Quota like quality to them.

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