ACC Bubble Analysis for February 1, 2015


I said on twitter this was the ACC’s best season in at least 10 years, and I truly believe that. Great games each week with top caliber competition. Even the teams near the bottom can throw a scare in to the top teams. Let’s get to the bubble rankings.

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) Virginia (19-1) (7-1) Projected Seed 1

Last 10 – (9-1)

Good Wins – * (9) VCU, * (17) Maryland, * (54) George Washington, (79) Harvard, * (47) NC State, * (29) Notre Dame, * (48) Davidson, (99) LaSalle, (75) Rutgers * (49) Miami, (82) Clemson, (90) LaSalle

Bad Losses – None

Notes – Virginia’s defense for the first time this year cracked under the pressure. In the last several minutes of the game with Duke they couldn’t stop the Blue Devils in the 69-63. I’m still not too worried about the Hoos, but that shows there is a chink in the armor. The tough schedule continues with a game at UNC Monday then Louisville comes to Charlottesville.

(5) Duke (18-3) Projected Seed 1

Last 10 – (7-3)

Good Wins – * (8) Wisconsin, * (39) Michigan St., *(31) Stanford,  (43) Temple, (85) UCONN, * (45) Wofford, * (13) Louisville, (50) St. Johns, (76) Pittsburgh, (99) Toledo, * (3) Virginia

Bad Losses  – None

Notes – Duke went on the road against previously unbeaten Virginia and came away with the victory. The Blue Devils are still very much a national title contender and they proved it with that win. They did lose to Notre Dame on the road this week, but a split in those two games is a good result. This week get Georgia Tech at home, and then a big game with Notre Dame also in Durham.

(13) Louisville (18-3) (6-2) Projected Seed 3

Last 10 – (7-3)

Good Wins – * (35) Ohio State (59) Long Beach State, * (36) Indiana, (74) Western Kentucky, (82) Clemson, (91) Minnesota, (76) Pittsburgh, * (10) North Carolina

Bad Losses – None

Notes – Louisville had a strong week winning at BC, then getting a hard fought victory over North Carolina. Of course in the ACC in 2015 you get no breaks, and this week the Cardinals play at Miami and at Virginia.

(10) North Carolina (17-5) (7-2) Projected Seed 4

Last 10 – (8-2)

Good Wins – (92) North Carolina Central, * (48) Davidson, * (35) Ohio State, * (13) Louisville, (57) Florida, (66) UCLA, * (47) NC State, (82) Clemson, (71) Syracuse, (72) William & Mary

Bad Losses – NONE

Notes – UNC got a good home win against Syracuse this week, and had a chance for a great week when the had Louisville on the ropes. It didn’t happen as the Cardinals got the win in OT. The Heels are a solid team, but they can only go as far as Marcus Paige can take them. This week is a huge game with Virginia, then a game at Boston College.

(29) Notre Dame 20-3 (7-1) Projected Seed 5

Last 10 – (8-2)

Good Wins – * (39) Michigan St, (52) UMASS, * (10) UNC, * (49) Miami, (81) Georgia Tech, (78) Purdue, (47) NC State, (5) Duke

Bad Losses – None

Notes – Notre Dame was just cruising along beating Duke in the middle of the week and then headed to struggling Pitt. Pittsburgh surprised Notre Dame in knocking off the Irish. This week Notre Dame hosts Boston College before heading to Duke in a great matchup.

Bubble But In

(49) Miami (14-7) (4-4) Projected Seed 11

Last 10 – (5-5)

Good Wins – (64) Illinois, (57) Florida, * (5) Duke, * (47) North Carolina State, (71) Syracuse, (89) Akron

Bad Losses – * (158) Eastern Kentucky, (105) Georgia Tech, (133) Florida State

Notes – Miami stays in the field, but barely. You go a week where you lose at home to a bad Georgia Tech team, and then lose at Florid State and you are going to end up on the bubble. This week becomes huge now for Miami. They have Louisville and Clemson at home. Does Miami stay in the field if they don’t win both?

Bubble But Out

(47) NC State (14-9) (5-5) 

Last 10 – (4-6)

Good Wins – (51) Boise St., (76) Pittsburgh, (56) Tennessee, * (5) Duke, (63) Richmond, (98) Louisiana Tech

Bad Losses – None

Notes – NC State has a handful of seconds from their NCAA dreams going down the drain.  They had already lost at home to Clemson, which was bad enough, and then they were moments away from going down to Georgia Tech. They hit a miracle three, and their season stayed alive. The Wolfpack have to started playing better. They have a tricky game at Wake Forest this week.

(71) Syracuse (14-7) (5-3) 

Last 10 – (8-2)

Good Wins – (53) Iowa, (59) Long Beach State,(98) Louisiana Tech

Bad Losses –  (127) California

Notes – Syracuse lost at UNC, and remains a team that looks like a NIT team. This is a big week upcoming for the Cuse. They host Virginia Tech then head to Pittsburgh. They need both.

(76) Pittsburgh (14-8) (4-5) 

Last 10 – (7-3)

Good Wins – (84) Kansas State, (29) Notre Dame

Bad Losses –  (191) Hawaii, (208) Virginia Tech

Notes – Pittsburgh got a huge win over Notre Dame, but all that did was make up for the loss to Virginia Tech earlier in the week. Still it gives Pitt at least a prayer of a chance of making the NCAAs. Pittsburgh hosts Bryant and Syracuse this week. They need to win both. Winning both, that sounds familiar. Either Syracuse or Pitt is going to make a move this week.

(82) Clemson (13-8) (5-4) 

Last 10 – (5-5)

Good Wins – * (40) LSU, * (24) Arkansas, (76) Pittsburgh, (71) Syracuse, (97) High Point, * (47) NC State

Bad Losses – * (243) Winthrop, (122) Gardner-Webb, (103) South Carolina, (115) Rutgers, * (133) Florida State

Notes – Clemson is not in the field, but they made a strong push this week. A road win at NC State was huge, and then they followed in up with a solid home win over Boston College. Games at Florida State and Miami are this week. I’d like to see the Tigers at least get a split.

Only if they win the ACC Tournament

(105) Georgia Tech (10-11) (1-8) 

Last 10 – (2-8)

Good Wins – (70) Rhode Island, * (24) Georgia, * (49) Miami

Bad Losses – * (217) USC-Upstate, (140) Marquette, (148) Wake Forest, (125) Boston College

Notes – Georgia Tech played their best game of the season with a 20 point win at Miami this week, and then it was a heartbreaking last second loss to NC State. Brian Gregory hasn’t lost his team, but he still may be losing his job. They head to Duke and then host Wake Forest later in the week.

(125) Boston College (9-11) (1-7)

Last 10 – (3-7)

Good Wins – * (23) Providence, (79) Harvard,

Bad Losses – (170) USC

Notes – Rough week for Boston College losing to both Louisville and Clemson. This week it is Notre Dame and North Carolina. I don’t see  a win in either one of those.

(133) Florida State (12-10) (4-5) 

Last 10 – (5-5)

Good Wins – (85) Florida, (98) Clemson, (49) Miami

Bad Losses – (192) Mississippi St., (107) Northeastern,

Notes – The Noles still aren’t on the NCAA bubble, but they are approaching the NIT bubble. They have won 3 of their last 4, and this week Wake Forest and Miami at home. Upcoming on the schedule is Clemson and Virginia Tech. I can see the NCAA bubble if the Noles can extend their winning streak to 4.

(148) Wake Forest (10-12) (2-7)

Last 10 – (4-6)

Good Wins – (63) Richmond

Bad Losses –  (199) Delaware St., (133) Florida State

Notes – Wake Forest lost by 6 at FSU, but came back to beat Virginia Tech at home. Wake Forest gets NC State at home and then heads to Georgia Tech later in the week. It wouldn’t shock me to see Wake Forest win both.

(208) Virginia Tech (9-12) (1-7)

Last 10 – (2-8)

Good Wins – (76) Pittsburgh

Bad Losses – * (255) Appalachian St., * (131) Radford, * (133) FSU, (101) Penn State, (148) Wake Forest

Notes – Buzz Williams got his first big at Virginia with a home win over Pittsburgh. There was a 3 point loss at Wake Forest, but that doesn’t take away from the big Pitt victory. A road trip to Syracuse, and then home contest with FSU is this week.

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