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ACC Roundup - UNC Close But No Cigar vs. Purdue

Meanwhile, Wake and BC seem to be showing some definite improvement

Wisconsin v North Carolina
WEST LAFAYETTE, INDIANA - MARCH 19: Nate Reuvers #35 of the Wisconsin Badgers goes up for a shot during the second half against the North Carolina Tar Heels in the first round game of the 2021 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament at Mackey Arena on March 19, 2021 in West Lafayette, Indiana.
Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

In ACC action, Louisville survived Detroit Mercy 73-67, Wake Forest thrashed NC A&T 87-63, BC fell to Utah 68-61, UNC came up short vs. Purdue 93-84, and Syracuse got the shocker of the day, falling to Colgate 100-85.

If it’s not clear, this is an embarrassing loss. The last time Colgate beat the ‘Cuse, Jim Boeheim was a senior in high school.

Colgate dominated the boards, which is really amazing, 44-34, and of course this was in the Dome. The Raiders also more than doubled up Syracuse on threes, 18-7.

The ACC has had several bad losses already, but this one is going to hurt in March.

UNC’s loss to Purdue wasn’t as bad, frankly, as we thought it might be. We thought there was a chance Purdue could just kill them.

It was a nine-point loss but UNC kept coming back. It was a fairly solid effort except for defense: Purdue hit 10-23 on threes and 34-61 overall.

Armando Bacot has nearly carried UNC early but Saturday it was Dawson Garcia with 26 on 10-13 from the floor. Bacot wasn’t much of a factor. Both fouled out though trying to guard Purdue’s massive front court.

Surprisingly, RJ Davis was the leading UNC rebounder with seven. Also, Leaky Black wasn’t available due to illness.

Louisville had a 13 point lead but couldn’t hold it and winless Detroit Mercy was in position to win with 1:39 left and the score tied. Noah Locke made a three with 1:17 and Jarrod West hit three free throws down the stretch. That’s closer than it really should have been.

Just as a contrast to UNC, Wake Forest is giving up 64 ppg. And the Deacs are winning by an average of 22.5 ppg. There’s no Purdue here but UNC’s other wins came against Loyola, Brown and Charleston. Right now, and it’s still early, but even so, Wake is looking like one of the ACC’s best stories.

BC lost to Utah 68-61. Utah is a traditional basketball school but they fired Larry Krystkowiak after last season and this is Craig Smith’s first season. Plus they haven’t played anyone.

Nonetheless, last year and the year before, BC would probably have gotten hammered in this game.

Now?

Utah had to earn it with free throws down the stretch. It’s early, as we’ve already pointed out, but like Wake Forest, BC is showing heart and that’s great to see in both cases.

On Sunday, UNC gets Tennessee, Virginia has Merrimack in, Clemson tangles with West Virginia, BC gets an unusual rematch with Rhode Island - they played just four days ago - Florida State plays Loyola Marymount, NC State welcomes Texas Southern to the PNC and Miami hosts the Florida A&M Rattlers.

  • Tennessee vs. UNC. || 3:30 || ESPN
  • Merrimack @ Virginia Tech || 4:00 || ACCNX
  • Clemson vs. West Virginia || 5:00 || ESPN2
  • Boston College vs. Rhode Island || 5:00 || Nope
  • Loyola Marymount vs. Florida State || 5:30 || CBSSN
  • Texas Southern @ NC State || 6:00 || ACCNX
  • Florida A&M @ Miami || 8:00 || ACCN