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ACC Roundup - Virginia Gets A Scare

And State wins while playing erratically.

Vermont v Virginia
CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA - NOVEMBER 19: Anthony Lamb #3 of the Vermont Catamounts shoots over Mamadi Diakite #25 of the Virginia Cavaliers in the first half during a game at John Paul Jones Arena on November 19, 2019 in Charlottesville, Virginia.
Photo by Ryan M. Kelly/Getty Images

In Wednesday’s ACC action, NC State took out Alcorn State 87-64 - no big surprise - and Virginia survived Vermont 61-55, which might have surprised some but not us.

Vermont has become a solid program. They knocked off St. John’s the other day and like UVA are a good defensive team.

Virginia’s problem, so far, has been offense. It wasn’t that bad in this one actually. Mamadi Diakite scored 19 to lead the way and three other starters scored at least nine points.

Surprisingly, the bigger problem was on defense: The Cavs had trouble controlling Vermont’s Anthony Lamb, who scored 30, nearly scoring more than the 34 Syracuse managed in Virginia’s season opener.

We’re sure Tony Bennett didn't like that.

However, while Vermont was in position for a huge upset, Virginia shut Lamb down at the end of the game and his teammates couldn’t sustain it. It was a one-point game with 5:12 left to go.

Vermont is 4-1 and very impressive. They look like a tournament team to us and a first-round nightmare. No one is going to want to draw them.

In Raleigh, State had no trouble with Alcorn State, winning by 23 in the remodeled Reynolds (it now holds just 5,500) despite playing erratically.

Kevin Keatts put it down to fatigue. You could probably put it down to early season refinement too, especially on offense. When you look around the conference, State, Duke, UNC, and Virginia are all trying to sort out their offenses. It’s no big surprise this early and State is still working Markell Johnson back to full strength after an injury. You really want your point guard to be int the groove.

After the game, Keatts spent a fair amount of time talking about his next recruiting class and why not? He should be excited as should State fans.

The Triangle has three of the top five recruiting classes in the nation. That’s never happened before.

In Wednesday’s ACC action, well, there’s a lot of it: Chattanooga choo-choos down to FSU, South Carolina Upstate visits Louisville for a pasting, BC hosts Eastern Washington, 0-4 Delaware State visits 4-0 Virginia Tech, Cornell bops over to the Carrier Dome to parry with Syracuse, and Elon hopes to rise where no Tiger has before to upset UNC in the Dean Dome.

However the clear highlight is Georgia Tech’s visit to Georgia. We haven’t heard much about Jose Alvarado, but he’s really key for the Yellow Jackets. Then there’s stopping freshman phenom Anthony Edwards who’s off to a sensational start. This game is a really big deal for the Yellow Jackets.

The one thing you can say about Edwards is that while he has gaudy stats Georgia hasn’t really played anyone of note.

If nothing else, you can be reasonably certain that Tech will defend well. It’s Josh Pastner’s strong point as a coach. So keep an eye on that one.

We’re not expecting much from the other games but maybe there will be a surprise.

Wednesday’s ACC Action

  • Chattanooga @ FSU || 6:30 || ACCNX
  • SC Upstate @ Louisville || 7:00 || ACCN
  • Eastern Washington @ Boston College || 7:00 || ACCNX
  • Georgia Tech @ Georgia || 7:00 || SECN+
  • Delaware State @ Virginia Tech || 7:00 || ACCNX
  • Cornell @ Syracuse || 7:00 || ACCNX
  • Elon @ UNC || 7:00 || ACCNX