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Home Cooking

ACC teams that do well on their home courts

NCAA Basketball: Virginia at N.C. State
 Jan 29, 2019; Raleigh, NC, USA; Virginia Cavaliers head coach Tony Bennett (left) and North Carolina State Wolfpack head coach Kevin Keatts (right) talk prior to their game at PNC Arena. 
Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

When NC State swept through Charlottesville the other day and came away with a surprisingly decisive 68-61 win over Virginia, the result drew justified self-congratulation. That was the fourth straight ACC road victory for the Wolfpack this season, matching 1974 for the school’s longest recent single-season streak.

Of course the ’74 Wolfpack was an undefeated juggernaut, 12-0 in a seven-team league that played a round-robin schedule, and went on to win the NCAA championship. The four straight ACC road wins were duplicated by the Pack from the end of the 1981 to the start of the 1982 seasons, the dawn of Jim Valvano’s tenure.

“To say how proud I am of these guys, it’s really unbelievable the fight we have shown over the past few weeks,” said Keatts, whose squad has a trip remaining to Notre Dame. Waving a flag that could be waved most anywhere, he admitted everyone had grappled with COVID difficulties, then went on, “We’ve had so much adversity in this program this year.”

The current NC State run is unusual though not remarkable — just last year Louisville won five consecutive away outings, the last against Kevin Keatts’ club.

What may signify a more notable streak, the loss was Virginia’s third straight in conference play, on the road at Florida State and Duke and at home against NC State.

This by the program least susceptible to defeat within the conference in recent years.

Through the NC State loss the Cavs are 70-19 in ACC play over the past five seasons, an average record of approximately 14-5, easily the league’s best. They’ve lost a mere 11 road games over that span and won 34, a ratio of better than three victories to every defeat.

Virginia dropped only eight home games since 2017. The NC State defeat was UVa’s first at Charlottesville in ’21.

Only two ACC programs rival Tony Bennett’s in home prowess lately. Overall Duke is a shade more proficient at 38-8 versus 36-8 since the ’17 season. And Florida State is an exceptional 41-3 at Tallahassee in ACC play over that period.

Riding a 24-game home winning streak, Leonard Hamilton’s squad figures to finish its 2021 Tucker Center slate by beating BC. That would set up a shot next year at tying and possibly surpassing Duke’s 26-game home court ACC win record (compiled from 1997 to 2000), the conference’s all-time best.

In contrast, FSU is eminently weaker on the road (19-24). Only Virginia and Duke have winning marks away from home in conference play over the past five seasons, an unassailable measure of consistent prowess. UNC and UL hold their own on the road, forging records around .500.

As recently as 2019 North Carolina posted a perfect 9-0 ACC road record. Virginia was 9-0 in 2018. Duke went 8-0 away from home within the conference. Otherwise no one else survived the league road gantlet unscathed in at least a decade.

In four of the seven most recent ACC seasons the Cavatiers lost two or fewer times within the neighborhood, most recently in 2019. Twice they lost five times, including last year when at 15-5 they tied for second with Duke and Louisville.

UVa’s losing streak is apt to end soon as it hosts struggling Miami on Monday the first before traveling to Louisville to conclude the regular season.

UNC and Louisville are notably tough at home, averaging two losses per year over the past half-decade.The Heels proved that point by dumping FSU, then the league leader, at Chapel Hill the other day.

Seven of 15 ACC clubs have winning overall records within the league over the past five years.

Clemson, these days a middle-of-the-pack program, plays its final regular-season games at Syracuse and at home against reeling Pitt. Appropriately, Brad Brownell’s club should finish no worse than 45-45 since 2017. That’s without so much as a single breakeven ACC road record.

Contradicting their tradition as inveterate last-season faders, the Tigers have won five straight and six of their last seven.

ALL IN THE FAMILY
2021 Totals Vary Due To COVID Schedule Changes, ACC Games Through 2/27
(Asterisk Indicates Same Coach Since 2017, ACC Tournament Not Included)
Road 2021 2020 2019 2018 2017 Home All ACC
V* 34-11 5-3 7-3 8-1 9-0 5-4 36-8 70-19
D* 24-20 3-4 6-4 7-2 5-4 3-6 38-8 62-28
NC* 22-23 3-5 2-8 9-0 4-5 4-5 33-10 55-33
UL 22-22 4-3 6-4 4-5 4-5 4-5 32-10 54-32
VT 19-24 3-3 3-7 5-4 5-4 3-6 29-14 48-38
SU* 18-27 2-6 6-4 5-4 3-6 2-7 27-16 45-43
FS* 19-24 3-3 6-4 5-4 2-7 3-6 41-3 60-27
NS 18-27 4-4 4-6 4-5 4-5 2-7 23-21 41-48
ND* 17-31 3-7 4-6 1-8 4-6 5-4 23-20 40-51
C* 13-30 2-4 3-7 3-6 3-6 2-7 31-14 44-44
GT* 11-33 2-5 5-5 2-7 1-8 1-8 29-16 40-49
UM* 11-34 1-7 2-8 0-9 5-4 3-6 25-21 36-55
WF 7-39 1-8 1-9 1-8 1-8 3-6 19-25 26-63
BC 5-36 0-4 3-7 1-8 1-8 0-9 18-26 23-62
UP 5-40 3-5 1-9 0-9 0-9 1-8 14-31 19-71