by Joe Perry
The ACC is arguably THE best conference in college basketball. It has 6 of the top 20 teams in RPI as of Saturday, and hopes to add to that number as the season continues to roll closer and closer to March Madness.
Definitely in: Virginia, Clemson, Duke
Should be in: North Carolina, Miami, Florida St., North Carolina St.
Bubble: Louisville, Virginia Tech
Pick it up: Syracuse, Notre Dame, Boston College
God help them: Georgia Tech, Wake Forest, Pittsburgh
Virginia has built up a tremendous resumé so far this year, putting up 12 tier 1 and 2 wins and their only loss coming on the road against a good West Virginia team. Clemson and Duke both have 4 combined losses in tier 1 and 2, but have plenty of quality wins to make up for them. Expect these 3 teams to be in the top 3 seeds.
North Carolina has plenty of good wins, compiling 8 in tier 1 and 2. However, their home loss to Wofford, as well as their 6 other losses, puts a flaw on their resume. Miami and Florida State both have solid resumes. No bad losses and a decent amount of wins. North Carolina State has 2 bad losses, but have been stringing together wins and boosting their resume. Keep an eye on this team as we get down to crunch time.
Louisville needs to wins some games. They don’t have any bad losses, but they only have 3 tier 1 and 2 wins. They’re putting themselves in danger of the NIT if they don’t pick it up. Virginia Tech needs to win some games as well. That tier 3 loss is tainting those 2 measly tier 1 wins.
Now, we have Syracuse. They have ZERO tier 1 wins, and those 2 tier 3 losses are not helping. They’re gonna have to beef up those numbers if they want a chance to slide into the tourney. Notre Dame, if they can get out of the ER, needs to pull out some tier 1 wins to make up for their 10 losses, including 2 losses in tier 3. Boston College is in a similar position as Louisville, having zero bad losses, but very few good wins as well. Just because you have zero bad losses (and plenty of good ones) doesn’t mean you can just waltz into the Big Dance.
Georgia Tech, Wake Forest and Pittsburgh are all lost causes. Good luck at the NIT, except for Pittsburgh. They’re on the NIT bubble.