2013 ACC Tournament Breakdown

Posted by Brandon Rink on March 12, 2013 under ACC Basketball | Comments are off for this article

Back to Greensboro we go for the 2013 (and 2014 and 2015) ACC Tournament. Jim Boeheim can't wait. (Pic per OrangeandWhite.com)

With the sheer number of upsets in college basketball this year, are we due for a wild week in Greensboro, N.C.? (Well, as wild as a week can get in Greensboro).

The ACC Tourney is certainly due for some excitement.

In the last two seasons, there hasn’t been an upset that wasn’t within three seeds.

It’s been since 2009 that a non-1 or 2 seed has won the title (been since 2004 that a team seeded lower than third won it, Maryland).

Previewing day one…

Round One

12:00 – 8. Boston College (15-16, 7-11) v. 9. Georgia Tech (16-14, 6-12)

Previous Meeting(s): 74-72 BC home win.

What’s on the line (besides advancement): Boston College can win its fourth-straight game.

Key matchup: Jackets holding down Hanlan – Georgia Tech’s scoring can come from any number of places, often doesn’t come enough en route to the 6-12 conference mark, but BC has been able to count on freshman guard Olivier Hanlan. In the last six games, Hanlan has scored 20-plus points in upsets of Maryland and Clemson and double-figures in eight-straight.

The difference: Both teams have found something down the stretch, with the Eagles winning three-straight and Georgia Tech 2-of-4. Tech led the bulk of the matchup in Chestnut Hill over the weekend before letting it slip away at the end. BC has some solid shooters, a different-than-most playing style on both ends and confidence right now.

Pick: Boston College

2:30ish – 5. NC State (22-9, 11-7) v. 12. Virginia Tech (13-18, 4-14)

Previous Meeting(s): 90-86 OT win for the Wolfpack at home.

What’s on the line (besides advancement): State is playing for NCAA seeding and maybe a sleeper run to a title after a disappointing regular season as the preseason favorite. For the Hokies, Erick Green can keep his school record-setting scoring season going with the upset.

Key matchup: Hokies guarding Wolfpack forward Scott Wood – He hit six three-pointers to lead State in scoring (22) in the first matchup. The Hokies allowed Deacs guard C.J. Harris to knock down six from long-range (out of six attempts) in a 90-79 road loss on Sunday.

The difference: NC State scores (75.1 ppg in ACC play) and the Hokies don’t defend (75.7 ppg allowed).

Pick: NC State

7:00 – 7. Maryland (20-11, 8-10) v. 10. Wake Forest (13-17, 6-12)

Previous Meeting(s): Maryland 67-57 in Winston-Salem; 86-60 Maryland in College Park.

What’s on the line (besides advancement): The Deacs can top their best win mark yet under Jeff Bzdelik.

Key matchup: Deacs’ second chances against Maryland’s size – Wake Forest didn’t shoot well in either matchup against Maryland (32.7 and 34.4 percent), and consequently, were also a combined minus-31 in rebound margin.

The difference: Motivation is a tricky thing this time of year, and Maryland, who had been a borderline NCAA Tourney bubble team until recently, is going to struggle to have much come Thursday. They’ve lost 5-of-7 coming in, while Wake snapped a run of three-straight losses at home against Virginia Tech. The Deacs have been ridiculously bad in the ACC Tourney under Bzdelik, losing by 19 points per game…so I’m stepping out on a limb here for the upset pick.

Pick: Wake Forest

9:30ish – 6. Florida State (17-14, 9-9) v. 11. Clemson (13-17, 5-13)

Previous Meeting(s): 71-66 FSU in Clemson; 60-57 FSU in Tallahassee.

What’s on the line (besides advancement): For the Tigers, it’s keeping their skid from dropping to losses in 9-of-10 games. FSU is the returning ACC Tournament champ, and look to continue to build on a strong finish, graduating just one scholarship senior.

Key matchup: Clemson guard offensive production against FSU D – Clemson matched Miami blow-for-blow early down on the road last weekend with 12 quick points from freshman Jordan Roper in the game’s first five minutes, but he didn’t score again. The other Tiger guards contributed four points total in the 62-49 loss. Clemson is far from a guard-oriented team, but four points in the final 35 minutes of a game isn’t going to cut it Thursday.

The difference: FSU is playing well – Clemson isn’t, which explains the disparity in seeding. That may not mean a thing come the Thursday nightcap in Greensboro, but we shall see. The Tigers actually own the better of two poor average scoring margins in ACC play (-5.2 to -6.1).  They had the Seminoles on the ropes in Tallahassee before some foul trouble setup a banked-in Michael Snaer buzzer-beater three-pointer. Have a feeling the Tigers might make this interesting, but I’m struggling to pick the upset.

Pick: Florida State

Quarterfinals (Prediction in Bold)

12:00 – 1. Miami (24-6, 15-3) v. 8. Boston College

2:30ish – 4. Virginia (21-10, 11-7) v. 5. NC State

7:00 – 2. Duke (27-4, 14-4) v. Wake Forest

9:30ish – 3. UNC (22-9, 12-6) v. Florida State

Semifinals

1:00 – 1. Miami v. 5. NC State

3:00 – 2. Duke v. 3.UNC

Final

1:00 – 1. Miami v. 2. Duke

The Why: Miami has stumbled to the finish, splitting their final six games, while Duke has rolled since getting Ryan Kelly back. After the Hurricanes drilled the Blue Devils in Coral Gables (90-63) and Duke edged Miami (79-76) in the rematch, this promises to be a classic. Both teams are battle-tested, but I have a feeling Miami gets it together for a strong run into the NCAA Tournament.

Bonus

All-ACC Team (If I voted)

VT guard Erick Green (Player of the Year – Green was relentless on a team where it would’ve been easy to take some nights off. Unquestioned ACC POY in my eyes).
Miami guard Shane Larkin
Virginia guard Joe Harris
NC State forward Richard Howell
Duke forward Mason Plumlee

Miss  regular posts from us? (Anybody?) I’m breaking down ACC baseball every week on a blog on OrangeandWhite.com and will talk plenty of ACC football as well this spring and summer.

Tuesday ACC Hoops Recap

Posted by J.J. Greenstein on January 8, 2013 under ACC Basketball | Comments are off for this article

No. 1 Duke 68, Clemson 40

Quinn Cook scored a career-high 27 points for Duke (15-0, 2-0 ACC) as they stifled Clemson (8-6, 0-2 ACC) with their pressure defense, holding the Tigers to just 10 points in the first half (their lowest scoring first half in 12 years). Devin Booker led the Tigers with 12 points and 15 rebounds but it was nowhere near enough to make this a competitive game. **Duke forward Ryan Kelly left the game with a right ankle injury early in the second half and did not return. His status is undetermined for Duke’s game Saturday at NC State.

Stat fact: The 10 points allowed in the first half against the Tigers was the fewest points allowed in a half against an ACC team for Duke since February 24, 1979, when they shut out rival North Carolina in the first half.

Saturday ACC Hoops Recap

Posted by J.J. Greenstein on January 5, 2013 under ACC Basketball | Comments are off for this article

No. 1 Duke 80, Wake Forest 62

Ryan Kelly and Seth Curry each had 22 points for the Blue Devils (14-0, 1-0 ACC) as they rolled over Wake Forest (7-6, 0-1 ACC), despite 22 points and 11 rebounds by Demon Deacon forward Travis McKie. The Devils hit 11 three-pointers on 24 attempts and forced 19 Wake Forest turnovers.

No. 23 NC State 78, Boston College 73

The Wolfpack (12-2, 1-0 ACC) escaped the Eagles’ (8-6, 0-1 ACC) upset bid in Chestnut Hill, as ten players scored in double-figures in the conference-opener for both teams. Freshman Rodney Purvis led six NC State players in double-figures with 19, and Richard Howell had yet another double-double for the Pack with 12 points and 11 rebounds. Sophomore forward Ryan Anderson led all scorers with 22 points and 13 rebounds for the Eagles.

Maryland 94, Virginia Tech 71

Maryland (13-1, 1-0 ACC) was very impressive as they dismantled Virginia Tech (9-5, 0-1 ACC) thanks to freshmen Seth Allen (21 points) and Jake Layman (20 points). Erick Green scored 28 points to try and keep the Hokies in the ballgame but it was nowhere near enough as they never got the Terrapin lead closer than 15 in the second half in the ACC opener for both teams.

Miami 62, Georgia Tech 49

Miami (10-3, 1-0 ACC) handed Georgia Tech (10-3, 0-1 ACC) their first loss ever in the new McCamish Pavilion thanks to a career high 22 points off the bench from Rion Brown. The Hurricanes dominated the boards, out-rebounding the Jackets 40-29 for the game. Georgia Tech hit just 17 of 52 shots, as they played from behind the whole second half.

Florida State 71, Clemson 66

The Seminoles (9-5, 1-0 ACC) held off a furious second half rally by the Tigers (8-5, 0-1 ACC) thanks to Okaro White (who scored 15 points to lead the ‘Noles) when he stole a Clemson in-bounds pass with 17 seconds left, giving Florida State a road victory. Clemson forward Devin Booker led all scorers in the ACC opener with 19 points and 11 rebounds.