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ACC Roundup - UNC Bounces Back, State Struggles And Pitt Finds Some Hope

Time for some real hoops to begin

Appalachian State v North Carolina
CHAPEL HILL, NORTH CAROLINA - DECEMBER 21: Armando Bacot #5 of the North Carolina Tar Heels steps to the foul line during the second half of their game against the Appalachian State Mountaineers at the Dean E. Smith Center on December 21, 2021 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images

In Tuesday’s ACC Action, Pitt knocked off Jacksonville, NC State lost at home to Wright State, Georgia Tech got a bit of payback at the expense of Georgia State and UNC zapped Appalachian State 70-50.

We figured one or two things would like happen here: first, UNC would be mad after losing so badly to Kentucky and take it out on App State. Or the Heels would crash and burn again.

Obviously that didn’t happen.

After hitting just one three vs. Kentucky, UNC shot 7-16 here. The Heels also grabbed 14 offensive rebounds.

Remember how Michael Almonacy went off in the first half at Duke?

Didn’t happen here: he shot 2-13 and 0-8 on threes.

Overall the Mountaineers hit just 31.3 percent and just 4-30 on threes. Maybe Hubert got some points across.

How do you reconcile NC State’s near-miss against powerhouse Purdue and then losing to mediocre Wright State?

It’s a simple formula actually.

Take away their only seasoned big man and then rely on a team with two juniors in the rotation with underclassmen.

Dereon Seabron? Sophomore. Cam Hayes? Sophomore. Ebenezer Dowuona? Sophomore. Breon Pass? Terquavion Smith? Ernest Ross?


And no offense to anyone but these aren’t the plug-and-play freshmen Duke gets. They need time to grow.

We hope State fans can accept that because if they’re patient, it could be a great core in a year or two.

Dereon Seabron - with a name like that he could have been on Game of Thrones - has been brilliant this year. We love him, love hi relentless energy. The guy has been amazing.

He was off in this one though with just 10 points on 4-12 shooting and just four boards. We look at that and think man, he really sucked tonight, but who the hell knows why? Maybe he was sick. Maybe he’s banged up. Maybe he had a fight with his girlfriend. Maybe someone he cares about is struggling with Covid.

Or maybe he just didn’t have it tonight for some reason.

It’s easy to just look at those two hours of entertainment and boil a kid down to that. No one is just that.

No four overtime epic for Georgia Tech this year but they did need one extra frame to beat the Georgia State Panthers. Jordan Usher had 30 and put the game in OT with free throws.

No wonder they almost lost: Georgia Tech had 23 turnovers. Oy! It underscores just how good Jose Alvarado was for four years.

Has Pitt found an identity? Possibly. The Panthers have toughened up lately. But Jeff Capel also got a monster game from Femi Odukale who had 28. John Hugely was off in this one but he’s played well. The two of them give Pitt some real hope.

On Wednesday, Notre Dame takes on Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, Virginia and Clemson wrestle in Charlottesville and Duke hosts Virginia Tech.

Wake Forest moves to 11-1 with a Covid forfeit by BC and is now 2-0 in conference play and in first place.

Wednesday’s ACC Action

  • Texas A&M-CC @ Notre Dame || 1:00 || ACCN/ESPN+
  • Clemson @ Virginia || 7:00 || ACCN
  • Virginia Tech @ Duke || 9:00 || ESPN2
  • Boston College @ Wake Forest