In Sunday’s ACC news, Wofford beat UNC again, 68-64, NC State got a miracle to escape UNCG 80-77, South Carolina knocked off Clemson in that rivalry 67-54, Boston College beat Central Connecticut 74-55 and the Hokies smote Gardner-Webb 73-46.
Let’s deal with the local stuff first because those games were way more interesting.
UNC played the first men’s regular season game in Carmichael since the Dean Dome opened if we’re not mistaken.
However, the Tar Heels were minus Leaky Black (foot), Sterling Manley (surgery and out for the year), and star freshman Cole Anthony (knee) - and Wofford, a team which has no reason to fear UNC, played with confidence and was the better team.
The Terriers actually ripped off a 16-0 run in the second half. In Chapel Hill. In the womb of Tar Heel basketball.
Look. Obviously Anthony’s absence hurts. Presumably though UNC can play some defense?
And on offense, while Garrison Brooks hit 8-10 over a smallish bunch of Terriers, the rest of the team shot 15-53.
Some good news - UNC had 17 assists on 23 made baskets and killed on the boards, 51-34.
It’s a very limited team on offense even with Anthony playing. Without him though, only 64 points? At home? Against Wofford?
Minor trivia we saw somewhere else: Wofford is the last team to beat NC State in Reynolds and is now the last team to beat UNC in Carmichael.
Does Wofford intentionally look for guys with great names? Last year they had Fletcher Magee. This year they have guys named Storm and Messiah and one guy who’s last name is Theme-Love.
Roy has just two games to match Dean Smith’s win total and at this rate it could take awhile. We’ll go out on a limb and guess UNC won’t win at Gonzaga Wednesday night either. Without Anthony, easy wins are few and far between for the Tar Heels.
The other day we posed a question which a lot of people probably thought was nuts: will Virginia Tech’s Hunter Cattoor have a better college career than Cole Anthony?
Our reasoning was that first he’s very different kind of player and doesn't need to control the ball all the time.
With Anthony’s time away classified as “indefinite,” the argument for Cattoor grows stronger because he’ll be around longer.
We think we asked the same question about NC State’s Markell Johnson and Dennis Smith and it’s hard to say now that Smith had a better career than Johnson has to date.
And Johnson, who has really developed nicely, hit a spectacular shot from the backcourt with time running out to give State an 80-77 win.
And let’s be real here: Wes Miller is doing a superb job. Greensboro gave Kansas a very tough game, beat Georgetown and was a few seconds from taking NC State into overtime.
This is a tournament team in our opinion and while Wake Forest fans might dream of his replacing Danny Manning soon, it wouldn’t surprise us if he stays at UNCG until Ol’ Roy retires. He’s making a great argument to be the next coach at UNC.
A lot of ACC fans don’t understand the intensity of the Clemson-South Carolina rivalry but it has always been heated. And since South Carolina left the ACC, they’ve only played each other once a year so it means a lot.
This time the prize goes to the Gamecocks. As you’d expect from a Brad Brownell team, Clemson fought and kept the game reasonably close into the early second half, but South Carolina pulled away behind the play of AJ Lawson.
Clemson had a four-year winning streak and if the CFB playoffs weren’t around the corner, people might actually care. But no one is paying much attention to basketball now in Clemson.
Incidentally, Hunter Tyson didn't score in this game, but he has moved into the starting lineup and has shown some potential. He’s worth keeping an eye on.
Only two guys cracked double figures for Clemson - Aamir Sims had 21 and freshman Al-Amir Dawes had 13.
It’s pretty clear by now that Mike Young likes the three. Virginia Tech hit 13 against Gardner-Webb and won by 27.
However, the Bulldogs were missing star guard Nate Johnson and that had to hurt.
You can’t really draw much from the BC-Central Connecticut game. The other Blue Devils are 0-10 and weren’t going to win this or cause BC much trouble.
Stefan Mitchell had a double-double with 13 points, 12 rebounds and six steals. That’s a pretty nice line and he’s really come on lately.
Former Blue Devil - the winning kind of Blue Devil - Derryck Thornton had 12 points, four boards and three assists for BC.
This is pretty funny - after the Syracuse-Georgetown game, Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim ripped into former Georgetown guard James Akinjo: “They got rid of a guy that wouldn’t pass the ball to anybody and just shot it every time, and that’s why they’re good now. They’ve got seven guys that are as good as anybody’s. Two guys weren’t really contributing at all and that one guy was just throwing the ball up all the time. I know Patrick can’t say that but I can. I watched him play three games. He lost two games by himself.”
Boeheim apparently took off what little filter he has for that.
Only one game Monday as Pitt hosts 6-4 Northern Illinois. The Panthers have improved to the point where you expect them to win games like this.
Monday’s ACC Action
- Northern Illinois @ Pitt || 7:00 || ACCN
- Wofford 68 UNC 64
- Boston College 74 Central Conn. 55
- Virginia Tech 73 Gardner-Webb 46
- NC State 80 UNC-G 77
- South Carolina 67 Clemson 54
- Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim throws shade at former Georgetown guard James Akinjo
- NC State passes road test at UNCG that can pay dividends in March
- Carmichael roars once more, but no retro comeback for UNC as Wofford pulls upset
- No. 17 UNC upset by Wofford at home, again. This time, with Cole Anthony
- Halfcourt buzzer-beater pushes NC State men’s basketball team past UNCG
- Insider: N.C. State 80, UNCG 77
- Jeff Mills: UNCG’s comeback spoiled by Wolfpack’s half-court buzzer-beater
- Wofford makes memory in Carmichael with upset of UNC
- Johnson’s heave connects for Wolfpack
- USC-Clemson handshake line breaks up early. Here’s what coaches said about it
- The move that explains South Carolina’s new approach to Clemson basketball rivalry
- South Carolina basketball is seeking to snap a three-game losing streak to rival Clemson on Sunday, Dec. 15, 2019, at Littlejohn Coliseum.
- WATCH: No postgame handshake after Clemson-SC basketball game