Pre-ACCT Bubble Watch

This has to be one of the most boring bubble watches that I have ever put together because the groups seem so obvious:

UNC WF, Duke, FSU, and Clemson are absolute locks for the NCAAT. I haven’t done a great deal of analysis on tournament seeding, but my gut says that UNC is the only ACC team with a shot at a #1 seed. I’m not conceding the ACCT to UNC, it’s just that I don’t think that anyone else can get a #1 seed even if they win the ACCT.

BC should be a lock for the NCAAT. They only have two negatives on their resume….RPI rank at #56 and three losses to teams ranked 100+. They finished the regular season reasonably well at 6-4 with wins over Duke and FSU. If they had won in Raleigh, I would have put BC in the first paragraph as an absolute lock with 10 conference wins. But even with that stumble, I just can’t see a team with three wins against the top-25 getting left out of the NCAAT.

The Bubble Teams

VT, Maryland, and Miami all finished at 7-9 in conference, which is a huge, huge negative going into Selection Sunday. It’s interesting that both VT and UMD have a loss to UVA…which might turn into a bigger difference than any one game is really worth.

My guess is that all three teams need a win on Friday to play their way into the NCAAT. I’m afraid that a loss on Thursday will doom any of these teams to the NIT. A loss on Friday likely means that they need a lot of other bubble teams to stumble as well. Here is a brief synopsis of the high/low points from each team.


17-11 overall record
RPI Rank – 54
SOS Rank – 26
OOC SOS Rank – 90
2-6 against Top 25 (Both @ home)
0-1 against 26-50
3-2 against 51-75
4-6 to end the regular season
Best road/neutral win – BC (#56)
Bad losses to NCSU (#102), GT (#153)

Virginia Tech

17-13 overall record
RPI Rank – 62
SOS Rank – 24
OOC SOS Rank – 101
2-7 against Top 25 (BOTH on the road)
0-1 against 26-50
2-2 against 51-75
3-7 to end the regular season
Bad losses to Seton Hall (#99), UVA (#108), Georgia (#188)


18-12 overall record
RPI Rank – 67
SOS Rank – 25
OOC SOS Rank – 145
2-6 against Top 25 (1@ home; 1@ neutral)
1-2 against 26-50
2-2 against 51-75
5-5 to end the regular season
No road wins against anyone in top-100
Bad losses to UVA (#108), Morgan St (#136)

BJD95 has promised us an ACCT preview, so save your tournament specific comments for that entry. Focus your comments here on the NCAAT bubble. Those of you that follow Lundardi, Palm, etc can update us on their latest projections for the ACC.

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


20 Responses to Pre-ACCT Bubble Watch

  1. wufpup76 03/10/2009 at 10:35 AM #

    I think BC is in even if they happen to lose to Virginia on Thursday night. Though, they should be a lock if they win that game.

    The win in Chapel Hole is the gift that keeps on giving.

    I just can’t see it happening for VT with losses to Seton Hall and gasp … GEORGIA. Then again, if those fools manage to put Kentucky in after losing to Georgia at home … Anyway, the Hokies may need a run to the title game at minimum.

    We pretty much know what Maryland and Miami need to do …

    (Maryland needs to lose to State of course! 🙂 )

  2. choppack1 03/10/2009 at 10:36 AM #

    It’s amazing how those records are almost identical. I think you’ve nailed it in your analysis, these 3 teams need to win at least 2 games in the tourney to go. No one can afford a first round loss. In addition, I think all 3 of these teams need help.

    Only 2 of them can be possibly be in contention after Thursday evening. If the “U” beats VaTech and UNC – they are in. Their RPI should be under 45. I also think that if UMd wins it’s first 2 games, they’ll have a shot – but I don’t see them taking 8 teams from the conference.

    If the unthinkable happens and UMd and the “U” or UMd and VaTech meet in the finals – do both go? Does BC get left home?

    VaTech – I still don’t know…I think they actually may need to win 3 because one of their road wins wasn’t against the crem de la crem: UNC and Duke – and like it or not, a win vs. Duke probably carries more weight than a win @ Wake from a publicity standpoint and timing (it occurred early in the year), though not an RPI POV. Plus the 3-7 to end the season is an absolute train wreck.

  3. wufpup76 03/10/2009 at 10:42 AM #

    ^Chop, I can’t see any scenario that leaves BC at home – even with a loss to Virginia. This is an amazingly weak bubble and I believe BC has earned their spot with the wins against the Holes, Duke, and FSU.

    Some of the teams on the “Last 4 In” and “First 4 Out” lines on various bracket projections have amazingly bad profiles.

    I’d be shocked if they leave BC out, but that’s what those guys are good for sometimes. “Hey! Let’s put the entire Big 10 conference in! Even Iowa and Indiana! Wouldn’t that be a hoot! Gooo Big 10!!!!”

  4. Wolf Dog 03/10/2009 at 10:44 AM #

    I think Duke makes a very good run in the tournament this year. They playing better and better each week since K changed his rotation.

    I see UNC doing like it has the last couple of years. They drop out of the tournament as soon as they run into a big talented center that dominates Hans and a NON-ACC ref. crew calls the game like it should be called. UConn will most likely expose UNC like Gtown did. I think Roy will lay off the boys in the ACC tournament. He will want to rest them for a run in the NCAA.

    I think the ACC right now has six teams that should be a lock. I am BC to your five. 20 plus wins. 9-7 and beat the #1 team.

    My sleeper for ACCT champ this year is FSU. They have the talent and are playing well. If they can learn to coach the last 2 minutes of a game, it can happen. They are due.

    I predict we lose to Md. round 1. I hear Fells is still not 100% and without his defense, Williams exposes our lack of energy on the defensive end of the court.

  5. BJD95 03/10/2009 at 10:53 AM #

    I spent the morning being depressed about all of our recruits going to Memphis, and wondering what could have been if John Calipari hadn’t broken our hearts on 4/11/06 (i.e., the day our basketball program died). I will work on the ACCT preview this afternoon.

    Back on topic – I agree 100% with VaWolf – all bubble teams need 2 wins. Since the 2nd win would come against a Top 10 opponent, I think that would be enough. Think BC is locked into an “ejector seat” seed (8 or 9). Beating both Duke and UNC will suffice, since they got to 9 wins.

    As for the other bubble, NIT-ology still has us on the outside looking in. Get ready to break out the radio for some thrilling CBI/College Insider tourney action!

  6. wpackman33 03/10/2009 at 11:19 AM #

    How depressing it would be if we are CBI/College Insider bound. We’re better than that. Oh well, whole other topic.

    BJD: When it comes to Wolfpack basketball, there’s plenty to be depressed about.

    I agree with all thats being said. I think these teams have to win 2 to be locks for the tournament. If they win 1 they’ll need some help elsewhere and if they lose 1st round, hello NIT.
    As far as we’re concerned, it seems like its almost a lose/lose for us. If we lose 1st round i think we will not be NIT bound. But if we win our game against maryland, that’ll give them a loss and bump them down to the NIT, which would take up spots that we need to be in there. So, here is an easy answer to that…. lets win the whole freakin ACC tournament. Screw the season. It starts now. Lets come out with a vengance and run the table in this tournament. Come on State, give us some magic and make it happen.

    GO STATE!!!!!

  7. Gene 03/10/2009 at 11:29 AM #

    I think VT, Miami and Marlyand need to make it to the Saturday, at the minimum, to get solidly on the NCAA bubble.

    BC needs at least one win to make it into the NCAA’s.

    I think the Big Ten and Pac-10 will get too much “love”, even though both those confrences are having down years.

    The real issue is how much of a love fest the selection committee will have with the Big East and if they’d send a team like Providence into the NCAA tourney.

    I don’t think there are many mid-majors in a position for at at-large bid this year. So the ACC bubble teams will be competing with the middle of the road teams from the Big 10, Big 12, Pac 10, and Big East.

  8. Wolfpack_1995 03/10/2009 at 11:59 AM #

    I think UNC will bow out of the ACCT early just to get more rest from what I’ve heard/read. They’d rather be rested for the NCAAT than exhaust themselves for an ACCT championship.

    How nice it must be for UNC if you aren’t even phased but not winning another ACCT championship.

    They act like they have enough ACCT titles and want Royboy to focus his team more on the NCAAT.

    In terms of the bubble I think BC and Miami should be locks even if they lose their first games in the ACCT. Watching VPI and Maryland play they look to be far less superior than BC or Miami.

    Maryland is winning with smoke and mirrors where they have no legit low-post players. VPI is a choke-job waiting to happen with Greenburg. We should have beat them at their place earlier this year and that would have definetly taken them out of contention.

    I hope we can exploit Maryland for the frauds they are this Thursday.

  9. GAWolf 03/10/2009 at 12:10 PM #


    Please don’t buy into that racket. Carolina wants to win the ACC Tournament just as bad as any other team or group of fans. They just use this oh so typical Carolina spin to justify NOT winning it should that happen. They’ve used that bullshit story for years now. Of all things UNC, that might piss me off the most: the “We did that on purpose” mentality.

    The underlying awfulness of what is UNC’s attitude of we can do anything we want to do but sometimes we just don’t want to is ridiculous.

  10. Alpha Wolf 03/10/2009 at 12:11 PM #

    So, you are telling us that State could pop Maryland’s bubble?

    (rubbing hands together) Excellent, most excellent.

  11. Par Shooter 03/10/2009 at 12:35 PM #

    Alpha, that is the only thing that excites me about this ACCT, the chance to possibly put a nail in Gary’s coffin for the NCAA this year. If we can do that then the postseason will be a success in my eyes even if we don’t make a “made for radio” tourney.

  12. whitefang 03/10/2009 at 12:40 PM #

    Congrats to the 3 ACC bubble teams.
    What is really depressing for us old fans is that if (when?) we manage to get mentioned as being on the NCAA “bubble” at the end of a season sometime in the distant future, we’ll throw a damn party and give everybody raises.

  13. wufpup76 03/10/2009 at 12:41 PM #

    I’m already on record saying I didn’t feel the Holes would win the ACC tourny this season, though I’ve already forgotten which post that discussion was in. But, I’ve been wrong plenty of times before … (It’s always nice to be right about the Holes going down though.)

    Wolfpack_1995 – I can’t agree with you on Miami being a lock. BC, yes – but Miami’s loss at GT was a real stinger (pun intended, I guess). If the “U” beats VT, then maybe – but if they beat VT and the Holes then they’re more than likely in.

    And GAWolf is totally right about that “attitude” from the Holes and their fans. I did happen to catch some of Roy’s radio show last night on the way home … A caller asked about resting Lawson some b/c of the toe injury, and Roy intimated that Lawson and the others would more than likely see less time than usual due to the potential of playing 3 games in 3 days. Roy made it pretty clear that they’d like to win the ACC tourny, but the focus is entirely on being ready for an NCAA run.

    I’d like to see them have to face Chattanooga. The Mocs would easily be one of the better 16 seeds ever if that is indeed the seeding they draw.

  14. ktoh 03/10/2009 at 12:49 PM #

    It looks like all 3 need to win to get considered,they have all three of them as 2 seeds in the NIT. They are gonna continue falling in love with the big 10 and pac 10 it is a joke.

  15. wufpup76 03/10/2009 at 12:55 PM #

    You can remove one more team from the potential bubble field:

    Cincinnati just lost by 10 to Depaul in the Big East first round. Depaul was 0-18 in league play.

  16. packbackr04 03/10/2009 at 1:22 PM #

    sorry for the off topic post, and please delete b/c i know your authors will post when we get some quiet time but….

    TOB is finally getting a new field, and thank god they wont be putting artificial on one of the nations leading turf grass schools. it would have been embarassing if we couldnt even have real grass

  17. wufpup76 03/10/2009 at 8:42 PM #

    Pretty good ending coming up in the Summit championship … The 1 seed North Dakota St. leads the 3 seed Oakland by 2 w/ just over a minute left

  18. wufpup76 03/10/2009 at 10:04 PM #

    Huge bubble trouble for Maryland, Miami and VT and the rest of the bubble field as Cleveland St. just upset Butler in the championship game of the Horizon league tournament.

    Butler is a lock, and Cleveland St. adds a second team from that league that would otherwise only send Butler.

  19. packbackr04 03/11/2009 at 7:56 AM #

    NDSU is a scary opening round opponent. they have beat a couple decent teams this yr

  20. wufpup76 03/11/2009 at 10:42 PM #

    Texas A&M’s chances just took a huge hit as they blew a 22 point lead to a pretty terrible Texas Tech team in the first round of the Big 12 tourny …

    This could bump the Aggies and potentially be really helpful to one of the ACC schools

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