ACC Tournament, semis…


I think my ACC Tournament picks are almost as up and down as UNC’s season. The first day going 0 and 3, then coming back with a 4 for 4 two days ago and finally having a 1 and 3 day yesterday. So, after eleven games I have a 5 and 6 record. Meaning that I am no Jimmy the Greek. On the other hand, good ole Jim was no blogger either, and that makes us even… I guess. But now, with two more games today at the Greensboro Coliseum, I have a chance to get myself over .500, or further into trouble.

The first game of the day, tipping off at 1:00 p.m. EST, is #5 Pittsburgh (25~8 & 11~7 ACC) versus #1 Virginia (26~6 & 16~2 ACC). To get here the Panthers have taken care of Wake Forest in a rout on Thursday and then North Carolina yesterday, going out to a 20 point lead and almost letting it slip away in the end. UVa instead is in the semis beat FSU 64 to 51 in my only right pick of the day. With both teams pretty set for the NCAA Tournament, this game is more about getting to the final. For Pitt it’s about moving up in the seeding, while for Virginia it’s about winning out and trying to get a top line tomorrow on Selection Sunday. It is also the old school ACC vs the new teams, and for us traditionalists in some ways it’s good vs evil. UVa is a 3.5 pts favorite, and I will take them to beat Pitt in the first game of the day.

The second game of the tournament, starting half hour after the end of the first match up, it’s going to be #7 N.C. State (21~12 & 9~9 ACC) and #3 Duke (25~7 & 13~5 ACC) in a battle of programs from Tobacco Road. For the Wolfpack to get to this point they beat Miami (Fl) by nine, 67 to 58, and then defeated Syracuse last night by three, 66-63. While Duke squeeked by Clemson by the narrowest of margins, 63 to 62, to arrive at this game. With twenty-one victories, including the last one against a ranked SU squad, N.C. State should have had their ticket punched for March Madness. A Top 10 Duke squad is definitely in the Dance. Now, this game, and the next for the winner, is all about the seeding. The Blue Devils winning the conference tournament could mean a top line, for the Wolfpack a win would mean having beat two ranked squads and could go for a third one if UVa wins its match up. Duke is a 9.5 points, and while I think that they take this game, I am not sure Coach K’s team will cover.

And there you have it, the match ups that will bring us to the ACC Final Game tomorrow. Two teams from North Carolina, three from the old school, two ranked and two unranked squads and a newbie are still left. Who will take it all? I am going to go with the top team in the conference, and the one no one talks about much… Virginia. But only time will tell.

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