Monday, March 07, 2005

ACC Tourney is Set

Well, the field is set. Wake pulls out a miracle and beats NCST is one of the ugliest games I've seen (since the last time NCST played).

The Jackets get VaTech and a sweet chance at revenge. Finally another shot to beat the Hokies at something other than golf.

So here's the breakdown for the ACC tourney:

Opening Round - Thursday, March 10
1 No. 8 seed Maryland vs. No. 9 seed Clemson 12:00 PM ET
2 No. 7 seed NC State vs. No. 10 seed FSU 2:00 PM ET
3 No. 6 seed Miami vs. No. 11 seed UVa 7:00 PM ET

Quarterfinals - Friday, March 11
4 No. 1 seed North Carolina vs. Game 1 winner 12:00 PM ET
5 No. 4 seed Va. Tech vs. No. 5 seed Ga. Tech 2:00 PM ET
6 No. 2 seed Wake Forest vs. Game 2 winner 7:00 PM ET
7 No. 3 seed Duke vs. Game 3 winner 9:00 PM ET

Semifinals - Saturday, March 12
8 Game 4 winner vs. Game 5 winner 1:30 PM ET
9 Game 6 winner vs. Game 7 winner 3:30 PM ET

ACC Men's Basketball Championship - Sunday, March 13
10 Game 8 winner vs. Game 9 winner 1:00 PM ET

Side editorial - Chris Paul is a dirty player. He's a player, but he's a dirty one. That cheap shot to the groin to Hodge was as "dirty" as I've seen (pic 1...pic 2... pic 3). He should be banned for at least one game in the ACC tourney. There is a benchmark here. You know, if you read the boards long enough, you realize that ACC fans outside of Wake have ALWAYS felt that Paul was a dirty player and that the media was blind to the truth. You take some of the internet gabbing with a grain of salt, but Paul sure didn't help his reputation with that move. He may look like a choir boy, but opposing players might want to consider wearing a cup if you end up matched up against him.

Having said that, every team has players who push the envelope with aggressive play. Let's face it - Isma'il is our guy and maybe T-Mac after that. You don't get easy layups with these guys and they are physical players. The difference was of course the blatent dirty play by Paul. But there's another difference - the media's complete fascination with Paul. They really do see this guy as a choir boy. Could M.Gminski have apologized and made any MORE excuses for Paul after it happened? Now that's not Chris Paul's fault, but it drives people batty.

Enough of that - strap it on boys, because it's crunch time - when the games REALLY matter. Now Paul Hewitt and the Ramblin Wreck have another chance to show real progress with this program. Success in the ACC tournament has been minimal at best the past few years for the Jackets. Why don't we make a real run and see how far we can take this thing? Let's build the Hewitt legend further by showing that he really is a PTP'er - winning games when they count the most.