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ACC Roundup - Miami Carves A Legend

If you haven’t seen it, go straight to ESPN and see hw this game ended.

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NCAA Basketball: Miami at North Carolina
Feb 27, 2018; Chapel Hill, NC, USA; Miami (Fl) Hurricanes players celebrate after guard Ja’Quan Newton (0) hits a last second shot to win the game. The Hurricanes defeated the Tar Heels at Dean E. Smith Center. 
Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

There are some ACC games that take on a life and legend of their own:

  • The Austin Rivers game.
  • The Dudley Bradley game.
  • The Gone in 54 Seconds game.
  • The Greatest Game Ever Played.

We suspect Miami’s win over UNC may go down as one of those. But what to call it. Miami’s Miracle? The Tre’Quan Game? Senior Day Shiv?

Let’s back up.

In case you didn't see it, Miami owned UNC for much of the game. But then, inexorably, UNC cut into the lead. You could almost see Miami saying (or at least thinking) not this time. This game is ours!

But of course the Tar Heels kept coming and when Joel Berry hit an awkward three point shot with :04 left to tie we figured it would be overtime.

Not this time.

Ja’Quan Newton brought the ball up court, took off a bit earlier than maybe he should have but early enough that all Joel Berry could do was to put his hand up. Newton watched the ball fall through the net as time expired and was immediately buried by his teammates.

With the loss, UNC could still finish tied for second place but only if it defeats Duke on Sunday. UNC would own the tiebreaker and get the second seed in the ACC Tournament...unless State wins both of its games this week. Or Clemson.

Or both.

That would be four teams finishing at 12-6.

We’re very bad at things like complex tiebreakers so we’re bound to get this wrong. But here goes...

Clemson split with State and UNC. The Tigers would win any tiebreaker with NC State but lose one with UNC.

If Duke loses to UNC Saturday the Blue Devils would lose to UNC on tiebreakers since UNC would have beaten Duke twice. State would finish ahead of Duke and we think Duke would finish ahead of Clemson.

However State would have the tiebreaker over UNC while UNC would have the advantage over Clemson.

Life would be simpler if Duke beats UNC Saturday and simpler still if State and Clemson lost this week as well.

As we said, we’re not sure we understand the possibilities fully but we do understand this: if either State or Clemson loses, Duke can’t miss on a double-bye.

Clemson has a tough draw Wednesday. It’s Senior Night but Florida State is going to come in irritated after getting kneecapped in Raleigh, plus the Seminoles have a powerful inside game that Clemson will have a tough time controlling.

Also playing Wednesday night: Bonzie Colson, who will return for Notre Dame. Don’t be surprised if the Irish, who have all gotten tougher without Colson, suddenly get hot.

Syracuse also plays at Boston College. Both teams are candidates for the NIT but a late winning streak could get them into the NCAAs (that might mean an improbably but clearly not impossible tournament sweep. There’s always hope).

Bit of transfer news: sophomore guard Rich Washington will leave Wake Forest after the season is over.

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