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ACC Roundup - FSU Tries Hard To Blow It

And just barely held on.

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NCAA Basketball: North Carolina at Florida State
Jan 3, 2018; Tallahassee, FL, USA; Florida State Seminoles guard Braian Angola (11) moves the ball up court against North Carolina Tarheels guard Theo Pinson (1) during the second half at the Donald L. Tucker Center.
Melina Vastola-USA TODAY Sports

Let’s get this out of the way first: Florida State had no business celebrating that win.

This is a talented team but FSU has a long tradition of blowing games and realistically, they gave this one away.

UNC just couldn’t fully capitalize.

FSU tried a stupid cross-court pass that Theo Pinson picked off in a nicely athletic move and then he had the good sense to get the ball to Joel Berry who nailed a three to cut the lead to 81-80 and you could hear Dean Smith’s ghost rattling chains courtside.

Then the Seminoles cracked the door open even wider as Phil Cofer missed two free throws and wham! the ghost of Jim Valvano showed up.

UNC got the ball back and Berry drove but missed and Pinson fouled Terance Mann with :04 left.

When Mann missed his free throws, the ghosts were high fiving each other. Garrison Brooks got the ball for UNC and the Heels called a timeout - the Ghost Of Dean had a few extra in case Ol’ Roy needed one - but it was a bridge too far.

Ol’ Roy has done a solid job, academics aside, but everyone who watched Smith’s teams play over the years just knew he would’ve had something in his back pocket for exactly that situation.

There was one game years ago where Smith had his inbounder run the baseline and the defender followed him - and was called for a foul when he ran into a stationary Tar Heel.

Defensive charging! Everyone marveled, even the Dean Haters. It was a brilliant play.

He had that sort of stuff though and as good as Roy has been, and in some ways he’s actually better, he’s more of a blunt instrument whereas Smith was a deadly sharp scalpel.

UNC took a long shot which fell short, perhaps tipped, and the Heels lost.

And then FSU actually celebrated...what? Not blowing it?

We can understand relief in that situation but that team totally mishandled the end, giving potentially at least six points in the final :39. That’s dreadful. It was a win, but it was an embarrassing win.

UNC lost and this team is being increasingly exposed. Berry is berry berry good and Pinson can defend and pass. The inside game is a problem though and Luke Maye isn’t the entire answer.

Incidentally, since the Tennessee game, Maye has shot 27-70. His early season success was impressive but it came against weaker opponents. Let’s see how he does now.

Also before we forget, check out this jerk move by official Teddy “TV” Valentine. Is this acceptable? Seriously?

Notre Dame didn’t have the remarkable Bonzi Colson but remarkably it didn’t matter at all as the Irish hammered NC State by 30, 88-58. TJ Gibbs and Rex Pflueger stepped up with 22 and 16 respectively.

Of course part of the problem may have been State’s poor frontcourt production. Lennard Freeman was okay with 10 points and four boards. He’s never been a big stats guy. Omer Yurtseven had 4/4. And Abdul-Malik Abu finished with 4/3 in 19 minutes.

The other day Kevin Keatts called his big men out and said they all needed to improve. They’re more talented than this.

Other than Freeman, no one shot well for State except for Torrin Dorn but he was just 3-5.

Well bust up the Deacs!

Wake Forest won exactly the kind of game it has struggled with for years: a tough ACC opponent.

The last couple of years Wake could compete for about 25 minutes and give up at the end. They seem better than that this year.

Speaking of better, both Clemson and BC seemed improved and for Clemson to hold on and knock off this team, on the road, is pretty good. Donte Grantham had a really good game with 24 points and 14 boards.

Poor Hokies. Poor, poor Hokies. Of all the rivals in all the schools in all the world, Tony Bennett had to take the UVA job. The Cavs flipped the script a bit, scoring 78 while holding Virginia Tech to 52.

It wasn’t that close: UVA led by 33 at one point.

Keep in mind that this is (was?) the best shooting team in the nation.

Well, Virginia is the best defensive team in the nation and they strangled the best shooting team in the land.

The Hokies shot just 36.2% overall and only managed 2-12 from three point range.

The Cavs, by contrast, were just a hair under 50%

Remember Alexander Karelin? He was a Russian wrestler who literally terrified opponents. Some of them actually trembled because there was no way to beat him.

This was a man who trained by running up stairs with a refrigerator on his back.

The only guy to beat him was American Rulon Gardner. Karelin could never get a grip on Gardner. It was like punching a big blob...kind of like the Pack Line defense.

Finally, after a rough start with dreadful losses, Georgia Tech picked itseful up and knocked off Miami.

Josh Okogie had 30 points for the Yellow Jackets. Jose Alvarado tossed in 12.

Neither team shot well and both stunk from three point range.

Tech won this game by getting to the line where the Yellow Jackets had a nine point advantage.

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