In Saturday's ACC action, a busy day: BC gets a break from the snow in sunny Miami, Wake visits UNC, Clemson has a critical game against Georgia Tech, sagging Notre Dame visits Virginia, State has a date with Virginia Tech in Cassell, and Syracuse has the Duke rematch in Cameron, covered elsewhere on this site.
|BC vs. Miami||12:00||ACCN|
|Wake Forest vs. UNC||12:00||ACCN|
|Clemson vs. Georgia Tech||12:00||RSN|
|Notre Dame vs. UVa||2:00||ESPN2|
|NC State vs. Virginia Tech||2:00||RSN|
|North Carolina State||6-7||16-10|
|Schedule | ACC Stats ||
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BC and Miami is pretty much meaningless other than seeing how BC responds to the huge win at Syracuse.
Wake has one huge advantage over UNC: the Heels are scheduled at noon, about 37 hours after the big win over Duke. UNC has struggled from the floor most of the year. Don't expect Leslie McDonald to shoot 75% from the floor again. And as well as UNC played, the rest of the Heels were 39% from the floor without his big night. If we're Jeff Bzdelik, and we're glad we're not, our goal is to get to Carolina's legs. With three starters having played at least 33 minutes Thursday, and Kennedy Meeks still working on conditioning, the Heels are bound to be vulnerable.
Georgia Tech is up and down, and Clemson's offense is suspect, but we'd still favor the Tigers here. Tech has nothing much to play for at this point, but Clemson still has tournament hopes.
If things had gone according to script, Notre Dame and Virginia would be a highlight game. It's highly unlikely to be a great game at this point, and being in first place, Virginia certainly has motivation. Losing here would be one of the great screw-ups of recent times in conference play.
Nothing will surprise us with State and Virginia Tech. State should win, but things changed for them with losses at Syracuse and Clemson.
Earlier this week, UNC's Marcus Paige was named as an Academic All-American. He is from all signs a serious student, but the problems UNC just can't seem to resolve make it hard to take it seriously. Inevitably, you ask: is it real? Are his grades padded?
It's not fair to Paige, but how can you avoid it? This is a school which not only engaged in wholesale fraud but has tried to weasel out of being accountable, which is why the scandal is never ending.
With trials coming up for participants in the scam, including former professor Julius Nyang'Oro, more bad press is on the way. And what incentive does Nyang'Oro have to help UNC at this point? He's facing nearly a year in prison and he's not a young man. Cooperation and a plea bargain will probably keep him out - and keep UNC in the headlines.
That may be part of why the university decided to launch yet another investigation.
Chapel Hill has hired Kenneth Wainstein, a former Justice Department attorney, to look into what the SBI uncovered in its probe of what used to be the Department of African and Afro-American Studies.
He'll have access to what the Orange County D.A. has as well and should fill in some holes in the previous reports.