In Tuesday’s ACC Tournament action, Miami took out Pitt 79-73, Duke ended Boston College’s most miserable season 86-51 and Notre Dame had a memorable win over Wake Forest,80-77.
Justin Champagnie, who has been a rock for Pitt this season, struggled in this one, hitting just 5-20 and 1-8 from deep for 11 points. He still had a double-double though with 10 boards.
Femi Odukale finished with 28 points and Nike Sibande hit 24, but the injury-racked Hurricanes were just better.
Pitt finishes 10-12 and has a lot of questions going into the off-season, starting with whether or not Champagnie will leave for the NBA.
Capel talked afterwards about how hard it was this season because he had a very young team and didn't have a chance to put the sort of work in that was needed due to the pandemic. Sounds familiar.
Miami gets a lot of props though. This team has really been through the wringer this year. The starters all had to play at least 33 minutes which could hurt on Wednesday when Miami plays a very rugged Clemson team at 2:30.
Notre Dame-Wake Forest was really pretty fascinating. We’ve been very intrigued by what Steve Forbes has done in Winston-Salem. The second half has not been easy but Wake Forest has nonetheless been transformed.
Ask yourself this: can you imagine a Danny Manning team playing this hard through serious adversity?
Yes, Notre Dame won but Forbes is going to build a program and he’s likely to do it very quickly.
As we’ve noted before, the NCAA has guaranteed everyone a bonus year but they can’t guarantee them a roster spot. So there are going to be a ton of player movement and Forbes will get his share - as will Jeff Capel, Mike Brey, Miami and probably whoever takes over at BC.
A lot of teams will get huge upgrades and they’ll be experienced too. Just imagine a kid like, to pull a random name, Winthrop’s Chandler Vaudrin, goes on the market. He’s a solid player, experienced and used to winning. He’ll get lots of attention.
Or after this season, imagine that Olivier Sarr has had enough of Kentucky and decides to play one more somewhere else.
Those are hypotheticals but that sort of thing is absolutely going to happen and Forbes, who is a bit of an expert at rebuilding with JUCOs, will simply plug in tons of transfers instead.
Wednesday’s schedule sees NC State play Syracuse, Miami gets Clemson, Duke gets a rematch with Louisville and Notre Dame will meet the Tar Heels.
Wednesday’s ACC Tournament Action
- #8 NC State vs. #9 Syracuse || 12:00 || ACCN
- #13 Miami vs. #5 Clemson || 2:30 || ACCN
- #10 Duke vs. #7 Louisville || 6:30 || ACCN
- #11 Notre Dame || #6 UNC || 9:00 || ACCN