ACC Bubble Analysis for January 5, 2014


Whatever I thought I knew about about ACC basketball for this year, I can just toss out the window. A couple of big upsets have change the ACC’s NCAA picture. Let’s check it out below.

In my ranking system, any RPI top (100) win is a good win and any RPI top (50) obviously worth more. Any losses outside the RPI top (100) is considered a bad loss, and outside the RPI (150) are even more damaging. I’m not counting future results only if I think a team would make the NCAA’s if selections were made the day of the post.

Teams get a “*” for top 50 good wins or “*” greater 150 losses.

My RPI rankings come from, CBSSportsline.com.

This is going to be a weekly article, where I seed the ACC teams where I think they’d placed if the tournament started the same day as my posting.


(3) Syracuse (14-0) (1-0) Projected Seed 1

Last 10 – (10-0)

Good Wins – * (6) Villanova * (18) Baylor, (30) Minnesota, (50) California, (89) Indiana,  (58) St. Johns, (53) E. Michigan

Bad Losses -None

Notes – Syracuse struggled a bit at home with Miami, but is a lock number 1 seed. This week the Orange go on the road to Virginia Tech, then have a big one at home Saturday against North Carolina.

(33) Duke (11-3) (0-1) Projected Seed 4

Last 10 – (8-2)

Good Wins – (53) Eastern Michigan, * (47) UCLA, (64) Michigan

Bad Losses – None

Notes – Duke fell at undermanned Notre Dame this past weekend 79-77. Was it an inspired Notre Dame team or does this Duke team have ceiling? I’m not sure just yet, but I know as of today this team, as my podcast partner @HokieSmash says, seems to lack leadership. Georgia Tech at home should no problem, but a game at Clemson on the 11th could be a test.

(37) North Carolina (10-4) (0-1) Projected Seed 6

Last 10 – (7-3)

Good Wins – * (11) Michigan St., * (24) Louisville, * (17) Kentucky, (75) Richmond

Bad Losses – (102) UAB

Notes – Despite the great the wins, how can the Heels be much higher than a 5 or 6 seed after they just got beat by Wake Forest? Miami is not a given even at home for a team as inconsistent as UNC, then it’s a game against Syracuse.

(30) Pittsburgh (13-1) (1-0) Projected Seed 6

Last 10 – (9-1)

Good Wins – (86) Stanford, (88) NC St.

Bad Losses –  None

Notes – Was Pitt impressive on the road at NC State or what? They won 74-62 and that was after falling behind 17-2. Pittsburgh should be able to handle Maryland and Wake Forest at home to move to 15-1. The schedule is a little light, but rank this team already.

(40) Virginia (10-4) (1-0) Projected Seed 8

Last 10 – (7-3)

Good Wins – (65) Missouri St.,  * (44) SMU, (83) Northern Iowa, (51) Florida State

Bad Losses – None

Notes – The Cavs got destroyed at Tennessee, but got a huge road at Florida State to keep Virginia solidly in the field. They get Wake Forest at home, then head to NC State on Saturday.

(51) Florida State (9-4) (0-1) Projected Seed 9

Last 10 – (6-4)

Good Wins – * (5) UMASS, (46) VCU

Bad Losses – None

Notes – That was an ugly ugly loss to Virginia at home Saturday. The Noles were never really in it and lost by 12. FSU is fine for now, but they can’t afford many more losses like that at home. A road game at Clemson this week could be tough. Then they get Maryland at home.

Bubble But In

(68) Notre Dame (10-4) (1-0) Projected Seed 11

Last 10 – (7-3)

Good Wins – (89) Indiana, * (33) Duke, (97) Canisius

Bad Losses – None

Notes – Talk about win that could change your season. That’s what Notre Dame got in defeating Duke. What a great victory for the Irish. They need to build on it this with NC State at home, and then a visit to Georgia Tech this week.

(77) Wake Forest (11-3) (1-0) Projected Seed 11

Last 10 – (7-3)

Good Wins – (75) Richmond, (85) USC, (37) UNC

Bad Losses – None

Notes – The Deacs RPI will get a boost after beating UNC. With 3 Top 100 wins, and no bad losses, why exactly would I keep out of the field this week, except that it looks strange? Wake Forest a NCAA tournament team? Yep… With games at Virginia and Pitt, if the Deacs can get a split, I’m keeping them in.

Bubble But Out

(88) NC State (10-4) (0-1) 

Last 10 – (8-2)

Good Wins – (55) Tennessee

Bad Losses – NONE

Notes – NC State failed to get a critical against Pitt this weekend at home. The week before they couldn’t beat Missouri at home. This just isn’t a tournament resume at the moment. Virginia at home is an absolute must win.

(95) Clemson (10-3) (1-0)

Last 10 – (7-3)

Good Wins – (100) South Carolina

Bad Losses – * (164) Auburn

Notes –  Good week for the Tigers. They beat VMI and won at reeling Boston College. If Clemson wants to truly get into the NCAA discussion, this week be their chance. They get Florida State and Duke at home. They need at least a split.

(123) Georgia Tech (9-5) (0-1) 

Last 10 – (6-4)

Good Wins – * (16) Illinois

Bad Losses – None

Notes – Losing Robert Carter Jr. for at least a month is killer. The Yellow Jackets are in serious trouble, and heading to Durham to face a mad Duke team won’t help. They also play Notre Dame in Atlanta this week.

(99) Maryland (10-5) (2-0)

Last 10 – (7-3)

Good Wins – (91) Providence, (83) Northern Iowa, (94) NC Central

Bad Losses – (129) Oregon St., (115) Boston University

Notes –  Maryland is finally getting healthy, and they look like they could make some noise in the ACC. Seth Allen is back, and they are off to a quick 2-0 start in the ACC. I don’t expect a win at Pitt this week, but if they could steal one there… well you get the idea.

Only if they win the ACC Tournament

(108) Miami (8-6) (0-2)

Last 10 – (5-5)

Good Wins – (71) Arizona St.

Bad Losses – * (152) Virginia Tech (114) St. Francis NY, * (248) UCF

Notes – Miami really pushed Syracuse in the Dome Saturday. This is a team that’s improving and I think could pull a few upsets in the ACC this year. They head to Chapel Hill this week to face UNC. The Heels better not overlook them.

(152) Virginia Tech (8-5) (1-0)

Last 10 – (6-4)

Good Wins – (81) West Virginia

Bad Losses – * (154) SC Upstate, (134) Seton Hall,*(268) UNC Greensboro

Notes – Virginia Tech gets Syracuse this week in Blacksburg. I’m not feeling good about the Hokies chances there. Then it’s a pillow fight with Boston College.

(159) Boston College (4-11) (0-2)

Last 10 – (2-8)

Good Wins – None

Bad Losses – (103) Purdue,* (164) Auburn

Notes – Stick to watching hockey this season BC fans.

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