ACC Basketball Update(12/9)

At this point I think we can say that Duke is probably better than we originally thought they were and NC State is far worse.

  • NC State lost to ECU and the score really is not important since this is the same ECU team that has not seen the court during an NCAA Tournament game since 1993 and that was against UNC. This is also an ECU team that was 0-57 against the ACC prior to this game. Way to represent the conference there Pack. A quick survey of the message boards and blogs in Wolfpack nation reveal meltdowns of varying degrees plus the first questions raised about Sidney Lowe. Needless to say, that did not take long. So what is wrong with NC State? A lot actually and most of it has to do players like Ben McCauley and Brandon Costner being shells of their former selves. The absence of a legitimate point guard hurts tremendously but at the same time it also seems like J.J. Hickson is the only Pack player producing anything. Gavin Grant has his moments and he did versus ECU with 25 points but the most daunting problem facing NC State right now is a gross inability to rebound. ECU outrebounded the Pack both in total rebounds and on the offensive boards. Considering the Wolfpack frontline should absolutely outclass anything ECU can run out there the failure to control the boards is a fairly damning indictment against the Pack players as to their effort. On top of this you add to the fact this team, which found a way to beat Villanova, was tabbed as 3rd in the ACC. At this point they might need to finish 3rd to see the NCAA Tournament. Losses like this one kill an NCAA resume and there is the very real possibility that the last 6-7 games from last season were overvalued. NC State have talented players but until they start coming together as a unit and playing with some intensity this season will end in the NIT not the Big Dance.
  • Duke came out versus Michigan with more rust than the hull of the Titanic circa 1913. The Blue Devils shook it off and proceeded to blow the Wolverines out. Duke continues to impress, especially on defense but also for the uptempo style which includes shooting and hitting three pointers at a good clip. The one question I have is whether Duke can continue to shoot threes like they have done so far as the season wears on. Players’ legs tend to get a little weary and those shooting percentages correct downward because of it. And looking forward to UNC-Duke I will be interested to see how much UNC can disrupt a lot of what Duke does including controlling the boards.
  • If NC State is heading to the ACC bottom tier then someone must reasonably trade up. Wake Forest lost to Georgia on Saturday which shows their weaknesses. Florida State beat Maine which does not mean much. Miami on the other hand won again to get to 8-0. Miami has the win over Providence on the schedule as well as a win over VCU. The win over FIU was fairly pedestrian so Miami may end up being the team we thought they were.
  • ACC play begins in earnest with Boston College visiting Maryland on Sunday. That one should be fairly ugly.

5 Responses to ACC Basketball Update(12/9)

  1. […] looks over some of the Heels’ ACC opponents, namely State and […]

  2. Josh Bowling says:

    I haven’t a clue why my post got erased. I do not think I stated anything over the line, at least I hope not. But what I was getting at is that Duke and Carolina have a decent shot at going undefeated this season. I (arrogantly) only see us standing to lose to Duke, Clemson and possibly State. Outside of that, I would find it mind-blowing to lose to anyone else. And I am sure that the Dukies are of the same mind-set as well. Was it 84-85 that we won several games before obtaining our first loss? Seems like we went 16 or so games before a loss? Can you get those facts THF? Do you see us potentially going undefeated? The only thing, out of all the ACC teams, we play Duke-State-Clemson twice this year, which may prove to be what is needed for us to lose a few games.

  3. Tar Heel Fan says:

    I did not see a previous comment come across nor did it get picked up by the spam filter.

    To answer your question. UNC in 1983-84 started the season 21-0 and then lost to Arkansas by one on a neutral court in Pine Bluff, AR. The won the rest of the games in the regular season to finish 26-1. 22 of those 26 wins were by double digits. UNC then beat Clemson and lost to Duke in the ACC semis. Beat Temple and lost to Indiana in the NCAA Tournament. The field was still at 48 that year. Clearly they were the most dominate team in the country all season and got tripped up in the two tournaments.

    Oh, and unless something drastically changes in Raleigh, I don’t see us losing to NC State.

  4. Josh Bowling says:

    Yeah, State has surely been the let-down of the ACC thus far. I guess due to the whole rivaly thing, I am pursuaded to count them in as one of our stiffer competitors, as I fear not fearing them at all. I wish I had the confidence that you do with regards to State. I should use logic as opposed to emotion when looking at the Raleigh matchup, just couldn’t help myself for a moment. But really, Both Duke and UNC could go undefeated. Now I know that is a longshot, no pun intended, but if we are able to get good offense from 3 point land, it could be a reality.

  5. Tar Heel Fan says:

    Here is the problem. If you go up and read my ACC update from 12/10 I said that based on the games so far there are three teams in the upper tier, four in the middle tier and five at the bottom. UNC plays road games against everyone in the top two tiers and two from the bottom: GT and NCSU. As much as I would love to see UNC got undefeated I get the feeling they are going to get tripped somewhere on the road whether it be Duke at season’s end or Clemson in January. Trips to BC and UVa are going to be very tough. I think they handle GT, FSU and Miami on the road just fine with NCSU probably being tough but winnable game if the Pack have not improved.

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