ACC Tournament, second round games…

ACC-BB-logo-300x167After yesterday’s round one of the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament, which reminded me why I do so much better as a blogger than a handicapper, it’s time to check out what today’s quartet of games, all shown on ESPN and WatchESPN, have in store for us. While you check out my take on these games, you can also see what JFann posted about any potential upset in them.

The first game, which tips off at noon EST, will be the only match up where neither of the teams played yesterday as #8 Maryland (17~14 & 9~9 ACC) will take on #9 Florida State (18~12 & 9~9). The Terps have junior guard/fwd Dez Wells on the third All-ACC team, while FSU’s senior guard Ian Miller made the honorable mention squad. The two squads split the two games this season, each winning their home game, with FSU taking the first one by the score of 85 to 61 and Maryland winning 83 to 71. This will be Maryland’s last ACC Tournament, as they move out of the conference, and while the Terps are favorite in this one I am going to take the Seminoles and the one point.

The second game of the day, which will begin at about 2:00 p.m. EST, will have #12 Wake Forest (17~15 & 6~12 ACC) going up against #5 Pittsburgh (23~8 & 11~7 ACC). Wake arrives in this game after defeating Notre Dame 81 to 69. Now they will take on a Pitt squad who has two players making the All-ACC squads, senior forwards Lamar Patterson on the 2nd team and Talib Zanna as an honorable mention, with just about a day of rest. In the only meeting between these programs this season it was the Panthers winning by the score of 80 to 65. In this one it’s Pittsburgh favored by eight points, and I will give the points and go with the Panthers.

The first game of the night, which will start at 7:00 p.m. EST, has #7 N.C. State (19~12 & 9~9 ACC) and #10 Miami (Fl) (17~15 & 7~11 ACC). The `Canes defeated Va Tech by 4, 57 to 53, to arrive to this game. The two teams met twice this past year, splitting the games, each winning on the road. For the Wolfpack it was a close one, winning by the narrowest of margins, 56 to 55. While for `Canes it was an easy win, taking it by the score of 85 to 70. Of all the games that will be played today this is the one with the most on the line, as N.C. State, who boasts the conference’s MVP in sophomore forward T.J. Warren, needs this game if they have any shot at making the Big Dance. However, the interesting part of this is that it is the Hurricanes that are favored in this one, by two points, but I am going to go with the Wolfpack as their leader wills them to a win.

And we close out the night of games with #6 Clemson (19~11 & 10~8 ACC) versus #11 Georgia Tech (16~16 & 6~12 ACC) in another game with much at stake. For the Tigers, who have junior forward K.J. McDaniels as a 2nd All-ACC selection, this is a must win if they want any chance at all at the Big Dance. Probably another win will also be needed, but one game at a time, right? For Ga Tech, who defeated Boston College 73 to 70 in OT it’s a chance to play spoiler for a day, or two. The teams played one another twice this year, with Clemson taking each of the games. At home by four, 45 to 41, and on the road by eight, 63 to 55. With the game being a pick’em, I will go with the team that has had a better season and won vs the other and is more rested, Clemson.

There you have it, my second round picks for the ACC Tournament. In the second and third game one thing to consider will be the crowd factor, which the in-state teams should have. However if the games are close, fan bases coming for the other games might just begin to root against both Wake and N.C. State. Buckle your seat and get ready, it’s not quite March Madness, but all these four games could be pretty entertaining to watch. Not bad for second day action!

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