Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Can the ACC Really Get Eight Teams In?

The ACC has a shot at getting eight teams in the upcoming ACC tournament (nine teams are actually in the hunt). A lot would have to happen for this dream to come true but it is very possible.

North Carolina, Duke, Clemson, Wake Forest and Florida State are pretty much locks to get in. UNC is fighting for a No. 1 seed while Clemson, Duke and Wake are fighting to get into close "pods". At least one of these teams will not get a first round bye in the ACC tournament.

This means that Boston College, Maryland, Miami and Virginia Tech are left fighting for those remaining at-large bids.

VIRGINIA TECH (17-11): Tech has a golden opportunity to show the selection committee what they are made of. The Hokies host No. 2 North Carolina on Wednesday before visiting Florida State this weekend. A win against the Heels would be their signature victory. That's saying something as Va Tech has won on the road against Clemson and Wake Forest. They also have wins over fellow bubble teams Miami and Boston College.

MIAMI (16-10): The Canes have had a very inconsistent season. They have no bad losses and have wins over Kentucky (fellow bubble team), FSU, Wake Forest and twice against Boston College. They have two winnable games (Ga Tech, NC State) to secure an 8-8 conference season. That means they are a win or two in the ACC tournament from getting into the dance.

MARYLAND (18-10): The Terps are tough to figure out. In this stretch run, they keep alternating wins and losses. The thing is that none of their conference losses are that bad (at UNC, at Clemson, Duke twice, at Miami, at Florida State, Boston College). The Terps have a huge game against Wake Forest coming up this week.

BOSTON COLLEGE (20-9): Of these four bubble teams, BC has the most going for it. Namely, wins over both Duke and North Carolina (the latter on the road). They've also beaten Florida State. The problem is that they followed up that win over UNC with a loss to Harvard. They are 8-6 in ACC play with NC State and Ga Tech coming up. If they get to 10 conference wins, it would be impossible for the committee to deny the Eagles.

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