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ACC Roundup - On The Whole, Not A Glorious Night

And worse, Jeff Capel’s seat may be heating up

NCAA Basketball: Citadel at Pittsburgh
 Nov 9, 2021; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Pittsburgh Panthers head coach Jeff Capel (left) talks with guard William Jeffress (24) against the Citadel Bulldogs during the first half at the Petersen Events Center. 
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Duke and UNC won - big surprise - but there were some unfortunate losses in the ACC on opening night. Here are the scores, wins first:

  • Duke 79 Kentucky 71
  • UNC 83 Loyola (Md) 67
  • NC State 88 Bucknell 70
  • Syracuse 97 Lafayette 63
  • Virginia Tech 82 Maine 47
  • Boston College 73 Dartmouth 57
  • Clemson 64 Pitt 53
  • Miami 77 Canisius 67
  • Miami (Ohio) 72 Georgia Tech 69
  • The Citadel 78 Pitt 63
  • Navy 66 Virginia 58

Okay, Virginia, your seat at the ACC’s Big Boy table is revoked until further notice. No offense to Navy but...Navy?

Yes, Virginia, there is a Navy and Navy just sunk your battleship. The ‘Hoos basically stopped scoring with 8:53 left, with just one three to show before the buzzer. We’re sure Tony Bennett will figure it out but geez. Navy’s the sort of team UVA should strangle in the crib. Virginia went down as hard as a 300 lb. paratrooper with no chute.

As for Jeff Capel’s Pitt, losing your backcourt - which he has to injury and suspension - doesn’t mean you should lose to the Citadel even if you are down to eight players.

We’re sure Capel didn’t, but we forgot that offensive mastermind Duggar Baucom is at the Citadel now. Moving from VMI to the Citadel is kind of a weird move but apparently he still likes a wide-open offense: freshman Jason Roche hit eight threes, the Citadel shot out to a 29-7 lead and Pitt was basically doomed. The pressure is starting to build on Capel and his program as you’ll see in the links below.

Baucom gets the Ted Lasso Award for the first coach’s reference to the show we’re aware of this season:

“Every timeout, the guys would look me straight in the eyes. They believed. At the first media, we might’ve been up 10 or 11. And they believed. I hate to be Ted Lasso on you, but I think that’s why he put the sign up. Half the battle is believing you can do this stuff. And I thought we believed.”

Things didn’t work out well for the Yellow Jackets either as Miami pulled an upset. In Tech’s case they’ll need some time to sort things out after losing so much talent and leadership from last year’s ACC championship. And remember last year’s team started out with losses to Georgia State - 4 OTs! - and then Mercer. So they’ve earned some credit.

On the positive side, UNC got the Hubert Davis era off to a solid start with an easy win over Loyola. It wasn’t a major challenge but Caleb Love and Brady Manek played well as did Dawson Garcia and Kerwin Walton. Despite the easy win, freshmen D’Marco Dunn and Dontrez Styles barely got off the bench.

Poor Manny Bates: he played one minute and had more shoulder problems. Can someone give him C-well’s number? He could give him advice. That’s just awful.

State managed okay without him, winning 80-78 but we can’t imagine a more depressing injury for the Wolfpack.

Well Buddy might be a little irritated: Jimmy shows up, plays one game and upstages little brother.

The Boeheim Boys combined for 36 points - Jimmy hit 8-9 - and eight rebounds. Buddy had six assists. Cole Swider had 14 in his Syracuse debut.

The only other game we want to talk about right now is BC’s opener. Last year this team was dreadful and had dreadful luck so winning its opener is pretty good.

The Eagles, at least for the opener, were a competent basketball team and we haven’t been able to say that too much lately. Let’s hope it continues.

Two more ACC teams open tomorrow - Wake hosts William & Mary while FSU welcomes Penn.

Tuesday’s ACC Action

  • William & Mary @ Wake Forest || 7:00 || ACCNX/ESPN+
  • Penn @ FSU || 9:00 || ACCN