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ACC Roundup - A Spectacular Saturday

The ACC shows why it is the best league in the country and it’s not really close.

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NCAA Basketball: Notre Dame at Georgia Tech
Jan 28, 2017; Atlanta, GA, USA; Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets guard Corey Heyward (30) celebrates with fans after their game against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish at McCamish Pavilion. The Yellow Jackets won 62-60. 
Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

The ACC season is always a passion play but this season is off the charts. What an amazing Saturday.

Where to begin?

We already talked about the Duke-Wake game in our Duke game piece.

What about UNC-Miami? We didn’t see that coming.

UNC shot out to an early lead and after that...Miami just eviscerated the Tar Heels. Took ‘em to school.

Miami built the lead up to 22 in the second half and even dominated UNC, the nation’s best rebounding team, 41-36.

That doesn’t sound dominant but Miami is a fairly small team.

They were just much more energetic than UNC in every aspect of the game. You could almost predict steals and gaffes.

It just wasn’t UNC’s day and that’s putting it mildly.

Ol’ Roy put the mild-mannered stuff aside and slammed a stool to the floor at one point.

Joel Berry said “[n]othing more to it than just not hitting shots,” but he was wrong. It was much more than that.

But what about what happened down in Hotlanta?

Georgia Tech hung with Notre Dame and Josh Okogie had what may become an iconic play in Tech lore, taking the ball in for a beautiful layup at the buzzer to lock the game up for the Yellow Jackets.

Tadric Jackson, who passed the ball to Okogie, said he was moving so fast he couldn't see his legs.

Brain Gregory was an honorable man, but it’s hard to imagine any of his teams playing with this kind of panache.

Jackson had 25 by the way, a career high.

With wins over UNC, Florida State and Notre Dame, you can no longer rule out an NCAA bid for Tech. How cool is that?

Tech has four winnable games coming up - at Clemson and at Wake, Tusculum and BC at home. They’re still working with a thin margin but it’s not impossible that they could be 17-8 after that stretch.

Clemson and Pitt was the only game of the day that went more or less as we expected but Clemson still had to work for it, winning 67-60.

The honeymoon for Kevin Stallings, what little there was, is over. The reality of the brutally competitive ACC has sunk on him and so has the realization that his team has some limitations.

Judging by what we’ve read in the Pitt media lately, he’s going to have a rocky rest of the ACC season.

Finally, after a tough season to date, Syracuse just jumped all over FSU, building an 18 point first-half lead before cruising to an 82-72 win.

We thought that Florida State would be mad and there would be no way they'd turn in a stinker after getting whipped by Georgia Tech.

Obviously not.

Andrew White had 24 for the ‘Cuse while Tyler Lydon flirted with a manly triple double with 14 points, 11 boards and six blocks.

After the day’s carnage, just look at the standings.

UNC is still in first place but with UVA hot on their, well, Heels. Florida State, Louisville and Notre Dame are not far away with three losses each. And the next tier has Georgia Tech, Syracuse, Duke, Virginia Tech and Miami at four losses.

It’s going to be a memorable January and February stretch.

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