ACC Update


In spite of State’s abysmal performance on Saturday, I decided to take a look around the ACC and see what has changed from the first look nearly two weeks ago.   To change things up a little, I’m going to set aside my brilliantly succinct table format in favor of a series of graphs to summarize the ACC season thus far.

The inserted charts/pictures are links that can be opened in the same or separate window.

Significant Trends of Interest


One of the things that I hate about sports announcers is their proclamations about micro-trends  that start with something like “Over the last 4 games…..”.   Performances (good or bad) have to be judged against the opponents faced.   A “good” trend against the bottom of the conference is not really worth noting.  (NFL announcers seem to be about the worst at this.)   This is why I risked cluttering up the chart with the results of the games played so far.

UVa starts the season 3-0 with the most note-worthy win coming in Tallahassee.    Their wins against State and WF won’t really impress anyone, but you have to play them in the order that they come.

Two weeks ago, I said that UNC had been very inconsistent.   Well they fixed that problem…which proves that just being consistent is not necessarily a worthwhile goal.   Losing to WF on the road was bad and losing to UM at home is even worse.

Miami isn’t really catching anyone’s attention so far…and might not this season.   But going 1-1 after losing to VT in December is about as good a turn-around as any Canes fan could hope for.

UMd going up while losing shows the effect of SOS and tells us more about the teams in the rankings around UMd, than it does about UMd.    It’s arguable whether it’s worth talking about either UMd or UM at this point, but it gives me a chance to repeat the line from the Sunday night game….”UMD has as many ACC wins as Duke, NC State, and Carolina combined”.

Up and Down (like a yo-yo)


This figure illustrates a few points that are worth considering:

–        It’s still early in the year and the RPI rankings are extremely fluid.   Wins and losses often produce large changes in the rankings, so neither panic nor elation should accompany any one game.   (Exceptions allowed for losses to NC-Central)

–        Those State fans that were crowing over the ND win might hold on until both State and ND prove that the game was worth the time it took to watch.

–        I don’t do the detailed math, but FSU’s bouncing line probably illustrates effects that we’ve seen before:   home loss (big drop), road win (big jump), and a home win (little change).

NCAAT Status



The only significant change is that UVA has moved up from the bubble and UNC has fallen down to the bubble.   The old Big East has a solid lock on the top of the new ACC….ugh!



If you’re new around here, the entire justification for using RPI to identify bubble teams has been explained in great detail before.        We’ll take a closer look at those items beyond RPI later on in the season.

State, WF, and the other teams trending towards the middle of the conference will sort themselves out in due time.    But the number of “upsets” and “blowouts” from the past two weeks show why I would never bet money on college sports.

When the RPI rankings don’t change the way you expect, here’s some advice:    Take a deep breath and just relax.   Wins are always good (some are better than others) and losses are always bad (some are worse than others) and changes in RPI rankings don’t override the scoreboard.    The key thing to remember is that the “RPI” that gets thrown around is a ranking and not the actual calculation.   Thus any change from one game to the next is heavily influenced by what happens with the teams AROUND the one that you are looking at.     The RPI ranking will sort itself out over the course of the season AND the NCAAT Selection is a process and not a calculation.


State’s upcoming schedule against WF (x2), GT, UMD, and UM should help tell us where State sits with respect to the middle of the conference.   Throw in games @Duke, @UNC, and FSU and the next four weeks should pretty much tell us all we’ll need to know about 2013/2014 Pack basketball.    Considering  that I switched to the NFL playoffs when Sat’s game reached 19-4, I hope that State’s effort and results actually warrant further discussion.


That has to be one of the most expressive exclamations ever and one that I used a number of times while searching around the internet in preparation for this entry   I’ll try to be a little more articulate and share those things that surprised me.


How did I miss that?

I decided that I would keep track of the RPI rankings and prepare charts when I saw something worth discussing.   After a little thought, I decided to get the rankings on Monday (after the weekend games) and on Friday (after the mid-week games).   This would minimize my work while giving the maximum amount of useful data.

But then I noticed that the ACC has at least one game every Monday this season.   Somehow I went through the pre-season review without seeing that.   That gives every team short turn-around weeks with Saturday and Monday games.   Oh well, ESPN has to get their money somehow before they can write checks to the ACC.

State’s Monday games are on Jan 20 against UMd in Raleigh and @Pitt on 3/3.

Where did they find that?










Diamond Logo

I always liked the diamond logo.   But that might be because I associate it with the best football coach State has had in over 30 years.


You have got to be kidding me!!!











I’ve actually seen that hat in a store in VA…but I’ll bet they’re not big sellers in NC.    Did you notice that the hat designers managed to get a better shade of red than whoever ordered the first seats for the ESA?
















I’m speakless

About VaWolf82

Engineer living in Central Va. and senior curmudgeon amongst SFN authors One wife, two kids, one dog, four vehicles on insurance, and four phones on cell plan...looking forward to empty nest status. Graduated 1982

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This topic contains 18 replies, has 16 voices, and was last updated by  MP 4 years, 3 months ago.

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    In spite of State’s abysmal performance on Saturday, I decided to take a look around the ACC and see what has changed from the first look nearly two weeks ago.
    [See the full post at: ACC Update]



    Dude. Great post!



    FANTASTIC work!! Thanks so much for the post.




    No, no. Va be havin’ some fun. Look at him go!



    I guess saying (parapharased), “playing once through the conference schedule” will tell us where we stand in the conference is not breakthrough thought … but I totally agree with the teams called out. To have any shot at postseason activity (NIT, not even imagining NCAAT), we need to beat WF twice, Miami twice, GT and Maryland. Add Clemson to get us to 8 wins. That is the only scenario I can stretch my brain around to get us to even in the conference.
    And I don’t really think we can do that. I think it more likely we win 5, probably losing at WF, and getting out coached twice to Larranaga.

    But it’s tough to figure this team out.



    I guess saying (parapharased), “playing once through the conference schedule” will tell us where we stand in the conference is not breakthrough thought

    With the bizarre conference schedule, you don’t have two equal halves of the season anymore. I just thought it was interesting that the next stretch of games was heavily loaded towards what will likely form the middle of the conference.

    I also forget to include two things:
    – Tennessee has dropped out of the Top 50 (which is still State’s best win of the year)
    – ND, Clemson, and GT all have a Top 30 win.


    1.21 Jigawatts

    I look at this team in this light, they are young and will be so mecurial that you can’t take one game and compare it to the previous or project the next. Heck we’ve seen it happen within games where they jump out to huge leads only to completely fall apart. My point is with a team that can look like world beaters for 10 minutes and goats the next 10 each game will be decided not only on how often the team can put it together long enough to play well but do it against an opponent that won’t play better. So we may be able to play our best game of the season only to have it come at Syracuse and they played even better. Maybe that makes sense, maybe it doesn’t but to me it’s about putting enough of the pieces together at the right time to get the wins and hope the bad times won’t be against teams who are truly playing bad. For instance, UVA, they couldn’t miss, granted I didn’t watch all of the game and our defense had something to do with it but from what I saw they were simply on fire and I don’t think this team’s best effort would have won that game.



    One of my co-workers actually has one of the red NC caps shown above and he is a UNC fan. Never did quite understand the thought process behind making a cap like this but the fact that you saw one in VA could be the key.



    Nice post.

    We are just too inconsistent to make the tournament this year. I just want to see development from the bigs. If there is any way to sign a shooter off of an intramural team I’d be in favor of that too.

    If you have watched Cat Barber this year you know why I NEVER count on freshmen until they’ve played half the conference schedule. The kid is very talented and is going to be an excellent player for us eventually, but he makes a lot of classic freshman mistakes. I like the old school system where the upperclassmen start and play the bulk of the minutes while the freshmen play 10-15 minutes/games to get their feet wet. Unfortunately we don’t have that kind of depth yet even though Gott has a deeper roster in year three than Sidney ever had. If we had a really good wing shooter, we could play Lewis 25-30 minutes/game, but we need the potential of Cat’s offense on the floor to have a shot in a lot of these match-ups.

    I wish Gott had taken a different approach to solving the problem of blowing late leads.

    (Note to VaWolf: All of the stats in your bio match mine. The nest will be empty in August.)



    Sorry VA, didn’t mean to sound as snarky as I did. My attempt at humor fell flat. Also didn’t mean to show off my poor spelling (“paraphArase”) skills.
    If I ruled the world ….
    1) I’d send all the refs back to training. They’ve reverted back to last year’s rules. Not that it would have changed the outcome, but UVA should have picked up several more fouls due to the physical inside play. Haven’t noticed it as much in other games, but it was pretty obvious Saturday. They were really physical.
    2) I’d start Beejay right now and keep extending his minutes as he rounds into shape. What better incentive than having to show it on the floor? When he gets gassed, bring in Vandy.
    3) I’d require that UNC lose the remainder of their conference games. (okay, had to toss in a fun one. What’s the good of ruling the world otherwise?)



    Sorry VA, didn’t mean to sound as snarky as I did.

    No worries, I didn’t take it that way.



    PoppaJohn, I don’t think Beejay’s shape can get any rounder can it?

    Man, that red UNC cap. It’s like when they write the name of a color in a text of a different color. It just messes with your brain. And that baby blue NCS logo…awful. The “C” looks like a bellybutton or something.

    Oh, and nice work on the conference rundown. The graphs are always helpful.



    So I was at the game on Sunday and was quite amused at the nickname the folks in my section (evidently all long-time season ticket holders who have been to many games this year) had for Anya: “Yum-Yum” (in a fond way, not a derogatory way). Anya is becoming quite the fan favorite, particularly with the way he outplayed Jordan V. One thing–is it too much for his body to take for him to actually jump when someone is trying to shoot a fadeback jumper over him? Reminds me of Nasal T. Lardbottom in the old Kudzu strip…(talking about the lack of vertical jumping ability).



    Great work. The visual representation is the best I have ever seen, particularly with the bands.

    We can play our way in, but need a good month. Right now, we’re NIT bound.


    WV Wolf

    Nice work, thanks for putting it together.

    Plus I always appreciate a good statistical graph…



    Wow great info and work … Thanks so much for your contribution.

    As for the Monday games, yep … the ACC is officially now a part of Espn’s ‘Big’ Monday since the Big East changed direction (haha pun intended). Espn may need a new moniker for ‘Big’ Monday though, seeing as how it’s no longer the Big East followed by the Big 12.

    Maybe call it ‘Duke-Carolina’ Monday, even if neither of these teams are playing? Those teams seem to be the only talking points for Espn anyway, so why not?

    As for the wtf red *NC cap, I remember seeing those for sale at the overpriced Lids store in the mall years ago and thinking exactly that … wtf? I guess if Walmart nation or hip hop video producers will buy it though then somebody can make money off of it. (No disrespect to Walmart or hip hop, of course).

    Can’t say that I’ve ever seen the hole blue block State ‘S’ before though … Interesting.




    Saturday night’s game was WTF in the PNC. Except for maybe the final HWSNBN-UNC game in the RBC, it’s easily the worst Wolfpack showing there since they opened the ESA in 1999. Not only were the students leaving midway the second half, even some VIRGINIA fans were leaving, shaking their heads and laughing.

    If you want to find where this Wolfpack team really is on your graph, just look somewhere below Boston College and Virginia Tech.

    The emotional involvement of the Pack last Saturday night was about as intense as our football season was. When you start 0-2 at home against teams you should at least compete with, that’s a bad omen. Especially bad for us are Wake’s and Clemson’s wins over teams we’re not likely to beat, as if we’re likely to beat anyone else besides Notre Dame. We probably aren’t playing to avoid ACCT Thursday; we’ve almost punched our tickets for ACCT Wednesday. Unless things change quickly, this is where this team’s bubble will burst for the 2013-14 season.

    For the ABCers, and I’m one, how can we let ourselves not take advantage of the Heels’ worst start in decades?

    I like this young team better than the ego maniacs we had last season, but until the coaching staff has the guts to bench who doesn’t need to be on the floor and put the best five or six players out there for most of the game, this season will continue to look like a YMCA game where everybody plays equal minutes.

    I thought that after the Maryland game last November 30, Wolfpack athletics had sunk about as low as they could go, but I may have been wrong. Sooner or later, LTR seatholders like me have got to start asking ourselves (and I have) just how much longer we will continue to financially support a school that hasn’t had an ACC title in revenue sports now in 60 seasons, and currently looks like it couldn’t care less if it’s another 60 seasons before they do finally win one.



    Awesome post.

    If we don’t go at least 4-2 in our next 6 games, we’re toast. And 4-2 would probably just keep us in the discussion.

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