#GoACC Power Rankings: Week 18
Virginia has a new accolade: the #GoACC power ranking's No. 1 spot
March 1 has come and gone, and there’s a new top dog in the ACC this week. Surprisingly, though, Virginia beating Syracuse for the ACC regular season title wasn’t even my favorite story out of Charlottesville that day. Jim Boeheim is the gift that keeps on giving.
Now Jim, when you see how far your team has fallen, YOU SAY NOTHING!
Onto the rankings:
15. Virginia Tech (down 1)
Record: 9-20, 2-15 ACC
Last Week: 66-48 L at No. 6 Duke, 60-56 L vs. No. 19 North Carolina
This Week: 64-47 L at Maryland, March 8 at Georgia Tech
Was James Johnson crying after the Hokies’ loss against North Carolina on Senior Day because it was his seniors’ last game, or because he knows he’s finished in Blacksburg? Actually, those might’ve been tears of joy in the latter case…
14. Boston College (up 1)
Record: 8-22, 4-13 ACC
Last Week: 66-59 L vs. Pitt, 80-72 W at Wake Forest
This Week: 74-70 L vs. Florida State, March 9 at NC State
Congratulations to the Eagles — their win against an erratic Wake Forest squad last week ensured that for the second consecutive year, Virginia Tech will finish last in the ACC standings. It may have been a rough year for Boston College, but it could always be worse.
13. Wake Forest (no change)
Record: 15-14, 5-11 ACC
Last Week: 62-57 W vs. Clemson, 80-72 L vs. Boston College
This Week: March 5 vs. No. 4 Duke, March 8 at Miami
The Demon Deacons finally broke their seven-game losing streak with a win against Clemson last week, somehow limiting K.J. McDaniels to 10 points — his second-lowest point total in ACC play this year. Then they follow that up with a loss at home against Boston College?
At this rate, I fully expect Wake Forest to demolish the Blue Devils Wednesday night and crush their hopes of earning a No. 1 seed.
12. Georgia Tech (no change)
Record: 14-16, 5-12 ACC
Last Week: 65-62 L at Notre Dame, 81-71 L at Florida State
This Week: 67-62 W at No. 7 Syracuse, March 8 vs. Virginia Tech
Suddenly Virginia’s 19-point win against Syracuse doesn’t look as impressive after the Yellow Jackets — a team that just lost to Clemson, Notre Dame and Florida State — went into the Carrier Dome and left with just their fifth conference win of the season.
11. Notre Dame (no change)
Record: 15-16, 6-12 ACC
Last Week: 65-62 W vs. Georgia Tech, 85-81 L (OT) vs. Pitt
This Week: 63-61 L at No. 14 North Carolina
The Irish showed impressive resolve Monday to battle back from a 14-point halftime deficit against North Carolina, even leading for approximately five minutes in the second half. Their reward? Their disappointing season is virtually done after one or possibly two games in the ACC Tournament next week.
10. Miami (no change)
Record: 15-15, 6-11 ACC
Last Week: 65-40 L at No. 12 Virginia, 85-70 W at NC State
This Week: 58-54 L at Clemson, March 8 vs. Wake Forest
After suffering a pounding at Virginia, the Hurricanes returned the favor against NC State, dealing perhaps the fatal blow to the Wolfpack’s (longshot) NCAA Tournament hopes. A loss against Clemson Tuesday night clinched the No. 10 seed or lower in the ACC Tournament, meaning Miami will play a first round game it actually has a chance of winning.
9. Maryland (down 1)
Record: 16-14, 8-9 ACC
Last Week: 57-55 L vs. No. 4 Syracuse, 77-73 L (2OT) at Clemson
This Week: 64-47 W vs. Virginia Tech, March 9 vs. No. 5 Virginia
You know Maryland is bad when they lose to Syracuse at home; even Georgia Tech and Boston College beat the Orange — and on the road at that. The Terps have the talent to be dangerous in the ACC Tournament, but have looked sloppier than a first year on Boys’ Bid Night the past few weeks.
8. No. 7 Syracuse (down 4)
Record: 26-4, 13-4 ACC
Last Week: 57-55 W at Maryland, 75-56 L at No. 12 Virginia
This Week: 67-62 L vs. Georgia Tech, March 9 at Florida State
It may be time for Jim Boeheim to take a year or two off so he can pick his nose in peace. Losing four of his last five, the man looks incredibly stressed every time he takes the court lately.
7. Florida State (up 2)
Record: 18-11, 8-8 ACC
Last Week: 81-71 W vs. Georgia Tech
This Week: 74-70 W at Boston College, March 9 vs. No. 7 Syracuse
Florida State is somehow still on the bubble after beating Georgia Tech and Pitt in the last two weeks. The Seminoles finish out against Boston College and a suddenly mortal Syracuse team, both must-win games if they want to get off the bubble and snag a tournament bid.
6. Pittsburgh (down 1)
Record: 22-8, 10-7 ACC
Last Week: 66-59 W at Boston College, 85-81 W (OT) at Notre Dame
This Week: 74-67 L vs. NC State, March 8 vs. Clemson
We all know at least one guy or girl who was a little awkward looking at the beginning of high school, but eventually became a person you wouldn’t mind taking on a date by the end of senior year.
Pitt is the opposite of that person. The Panthers have lost four of their last six and have lately played ugly enough against mediocre ACC teams to get themselves uninvited to the Big Dance.
5. Clemson (no change)
Record: 19-10, 10-7 ACC
Last Week: 62-57 L at Wake Forest, 77-73 W (2OT) vs. Maryland
This Week: 58-54 W vs. Miami, March 8 vs. Pitt
They may not be flashy, but the Tigers play solid defense and have a star in K.J. McDaniels, making them dangerous come ACC Tournament time. This may not be Clemson’s year, but with a grand total of zero seniors on the roster, next year very well could be.
4. North Carolina State (up 3)
Record: 18-12, 8-9 ACC
Last Week: 85-84 L (OT) No. 19 North Carolina, 85-70 L vs. Miami
This Week: 74-67 W at Pitt, March 9 vs. Boston College
A win at Pitt would have really meant something three or four weeks ago, but times have changed and it appears T.J. Warren’s 41-point effort doesn’t carry as much weight against these Panthers.
Erick Green won ACC MVP last year by leading the conference and the nation in scoring at 25.0 points per game — and Virginia Tech to last place in the conference. Does that mean Warren is a shoo-in for this year’s MVP award? He leads the league averaging 24.2 points per game and the Wolfpack sit squarely in the middle of the pack.
3. No. 14 North Carolina (no change)
Record: 23-7, 13-4 ACC
Last Week: 85-84 W (OT) at NC State, 60-56 W at Virginia Tech
This Week: 63-61 W vs. Notre Dame, March 8 at No. 4 Duke
Their last three games haven’t been as pretty as some of their blowouts in the middle of the conference schedule, but the Tar Heels keep finding ways to win, prompting ESPN to incorrectly name them the hottest team in the ACC. Their 12 consecutive wins are impressive, but not quite as impressive as Virginia’s 13.
Also, it was a very classy move — and an increasingly uncommon one in college basketball — by Roy Williams to start all four of his seniors on Senior Night against Notre Dame, including three that play a combined 5.6 minutes per game.
2. No. 4 Duke (down 1)
Record: 23-6, 12-4 ACC
Last Week: 66-48 W vs. Virginia Tech
This Week: March 5 at Wake Forest, March 8 vs. No. 14 North Carolina
After the Syracuse-Virginia game, there are few interesting ACC games left before the conference tournament. North Carolina-Duke is one of those — I always love a game that Coach K has a distinct possibility of losing. Don’t bet the house on a Tar Heel win, though. Carolina may be hot, but Cameron Indoor has been unusually kind to the Blue Devils this year.
1. No. 5 Virginia (up 1)
Record: 25-5, 16-1 ACC
Last Week: 65-40 W vs. Miami, 75-56 W vs. No. 4 Syracuse
This Week: March 9 at Maryland
I was hesitant to jump the Cavaliers ahead of Duke before the Syracuse game, but after the way they ran through the Orange like the cast of Jackass through a cheap fruit stand, the ACC regular season champs finally take the top spot in the #GoACC Power Rankings this week.
But don’t celebrate yet, I heard Tony Bennett is having a pool party at his house after the season.