ACC Tournament, first round games…


Tomorrow, at the Greensboron Coliseum, the Atlantic Coast Conference will begin it’s post season tournament with a trio of games. The three of match ups will all be on ESPN2 and on WatchESPN. Sadly none of the six teams will be going to March Madness next week, but any of the squads that advance could play spoiler in the second round.

The first game of the day, tipping off at 1:oo p.m. EST, will feature a pair of sub .500 squad as #13 Notre Dame (15~16 & 6~12 ACC) versus #12 Wake Forest (15~16 & 6~12 ACC). On the Fighting Irish roster there is a pair of players that made it to the All-ACC team, with senior guard Eric Atkins making the third squad and junior guard/fwd Pat Connaughton on the honorable mention. In the only game this year between the programs it was Wake Forest winning by the final of 65 to 58. The loser of game will end up with a losing record for the season, while the winner will have a chance to continue moving up by taking on #5 Pittsburgh the following afternoon.

The next game of the day, which should begin at about 3:30 p.m. EST (depending on when the first one finishes), will have two teams who were not able to make it to .500 in conference play as #10 Miami (Fl) (16~15 & 7~11) takes on #15 Virginia Tech (9~21 & 2~16). For the Hurricanes you have senior guard Rion Brown, who was voted on the All-ACC 3rd squad. The two teams played twice this season, with Va Tech taking both, the first one by the score of 61 to 60, in OT way back in December, and the second one by the final of 52-45 in mid February. The winner of this game will then face #7 N.C. State on Thursday night.

Finally, the only night game of the first day, beginning at 7:00 p.m. EST, will feature #11 Georgia Tech (15~16 & 6~12) and #14 Boston College (8~23 & 4~14). For the Eagles there is a third All-ACC player, sophomore guard Olivier Hanlan, while the Yellow Jackets did not have anyone selected. In the only time the two programs were to played it was postponed a day, and when they did square off it was Georgia Tech taking it by three, with the score being 74 to 71. The one that comes out victorious will then face #6 Clemson in the night cap the next round.

Unfortunately none of these first round teams will make it to the NCAA Tournament unless they run the table this week. And while I do not see that happening, three will have a chance to play spoilers on Thursday. What else they can do after that? Well, that is why they play the game no? So, here are my picks for the games…

In the first game I am going to take Notre Dame, which is a 3.5 points favorite and give the points. I just think that the Irish are better than their record due to the things that happened to their team throughout the season. The middle game of the day has Miami (Fl) as a six points favorite. I will go with the team from the sunshine state and see what happens when you give a half dozen points. In the night cap, where Ga Tech is a one point favorite, I will go with the underdog here, thinking that Boston College is going to give one more shot at doing something no one thought they could.

And here it is, the three games from day one and whom I think will win. The great part about all of this… you will only need one day to see if I was right or not! See you tomorrow, after the game are done, with the next round of games.

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