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ACC Roundup

Correction: we missed the GT-UVa and FSU-Virginia Tech games last night. They've been added to the table.

Poor Wake fans: what do you do when what you want conflicts with what you want?

How many of those people who have been screaming for Jeff Bzdelik's head rushed the court after the Deacs rather impressive upset of  Miami?

We'll bet you that more than one fan was jumping up and down and then realized: "oh, heck! This just means Ron Wellman will keep Bzdelik! Darn! Fudge! Shoot!"

Sunday's ACC Action
Teams Times TV
Florida State @ Virginia Tech 6:00 PM ESPNU
Georgia Tech @ Virginia 2:00 PM ACCN
Saturday's Results
  • Maryland 72, Clemson 59
  • Wake Forest 80, Miami 65
  • North Carolina 76, NC State 65
School Conf. Pct. Overall Pct.
Miami 13-1 .929 22-4 .846
Duke 10-3 .769 23-3 .885
North Carolina 9-5 .643 19-8 .704
Virginia 8-5 .615 18-8 .692
NC State 8-6 .571 19-8 .704
Maryland 7-7 .500 19-8 .704
Florida State 6-7 .462 14-12 .538
Clemson 5-9 .357 13-13 .500
Wake Forest 5-9 .357 12-14 .462
Georgia Tech 4-9 .308 14-11 .560
Boston College 4-9 .308 12-14 .462
Virginia Tech 2-11 .154 11-15 .423

Or something like that anyway. To paraphrase Ol' Roy, it's a freakin' painful win if you can't stand that daggum Bzdelik.

But if you've been reading here, we've been telling you since the Deacs lost at Duke that there's some there there. This is not some pathetic bunch of miscoached waifs. Au contraire: there is some talent in Winston-Salem. And it gets worse for the Bzdelik haters (prediction: you'll hear the phrase "Coach Buzz" this week): not only must he get credit for coaching his team to an upset of #2, but he also gets credit for assembling (most of) the talent to do it.

And while a lot of former Dino Gaudio recruits are toiling in the Pac-Whatever (Ari Stewart and TJ Terrell  at Southern Cal and Tony Woods at Oregon), it's worth remembering that Terrell left after a DWI, Woods after assaulting his girlfriend and that not everyone around Wake Forest felt that Stewart had a particularly refined sense of teamwork.

In other words, good riddance.

But that implied a long, hard road back for Wake, and it has been that. This win is like finding a $50.00 dollar bill in the grass at a rest stop on that road.  It's great, congratulations, but all it gets you is further down the road. They're not where they will be. They will, however, have the confidence that they can compete with anyone.

As they should.

We happened to pause the video when the camera landed on Dan Collins of the Winston-Salem Journal who looked delightful and incredulous. Here's his post-Miami column.

As we said recently, you either get sick of losing or accept it. Basically, a young team grew up.

To an extent that happened in Chapel Hill as well, though UNC's situation has been nowhere near as miserable as that of Wake Forest. If Kendall Marshall hadn't been hurt last spring, we're sure that UNC would be the defending national champs. Remember, the game at Kentucky came down to a last-second block. They were on a collision course.

This year has been quite different. Without a big man to pair with James Michael McAdoo, Roy Williams finally broke down in the Duke game and went small, and so far it's worked out great. They gave Duke a great game and haven't lost since.

You can count State among the victims too.

A lot of people, us included, saw this as a big series of mismatches: CJ Leslie had an advantage over PJ Hairston, Lorenzo Brown had an advantage over Marcus Paige and so forth.

Didn't happen that way: Hairston completely outplayed Leslie and Paige matched Brown. Richard Howell outrebounded McAdoo 17-7 (13 in the first half!), but otherwise they were well matched.

There was something else in this game though, and we think this is what it was: Carolina was not happy - and by Carolina we mean everyone in the building - about the idea of being surpassed by State.

At the end, perhaps echoing Duke's cheer of "our house" and going one step beyond, Carolina fans were chanting "our State! Our State!" Our State!"

Which of course you could take one of two different ways.

Meanwhile, up in College Park, Maryland took a bit to get going but eventually pressed Clemson well enough to get the win.

Alex Len, so effective against Duke, managed just nine against the Tigers. That gives him 13 in the last two games.

Duke loomed over this game, with Mark Turgeon saying that the building was flat and maybe the fans, and Len, needed Duke to get motivated.

Afterwards, Charles Mitchell said that
"I feel like the Duke win was an all-time high. And after Boston College, our team was at a low like, ‘What are we doing?’ We can’t have these ups and downs."

Welcome to Maryland, Charles.

By the way, here's a little Derrick Lewis update: he's coaching high school ball and doing a fine job.