The Confidential

The ACC Sports Blog

ACC Basketball Confidential Roundtable: January 15, 2015

As we have done with football, the Confidential plans to get some or all of the Confidential contributors together weekly during the basketball season to provide a summary of their school, the ACC, and other topics of note.

1.  How did your school look this past week–any surprises or disappointments?  Are you looking forward to anything regarding your school?

Brian (FSU): Not really surprised by how my Noles looked on the court. Syracuse handled FSU at home… as expected. Syracuse is a solid team if not outright very good, and FSU is just not that good. No surprises from FSU. I guess I am disappointed in the loss, but if you believe you must have high expectations to be disappointed by a loss, then I am not even disappointed. I still wonder if FSU can get to 16 wins this year… right now they sit at 9 total. I bet they get to maybe 15… probably 14. 

Harrison (NC State): The Virginia loss was somewhat expected. There was a little hope in the 1st half as State jumped out to an early lead, but it vanished in the 2nd half as the Cavaliers took control of the game. That loss made the Duke win even sweeter.  In case you somehow missed it, NC State was able to take down Duke this week. There’s not much to say other than it was a near perfect effort from the Wolfpack. I would not have picked Duke to be the win between UVA, Duke, and UNC. Tonight, they have the chance to do the impossible and finish 2-1 in that stretch. The team is hot and I think fans are optimistic.

Len K (Louisville): The Cards are still struggling with their offense but are showing signs of improvement. PG Chris Jones is finally scoring and passing the ball turning in his best performances of this season the last few games. They are still looking for a consistent answer at the 5 position. Duke comes to town this Saturday so I am looking forward to seeing if they continue to show improvement on the offensive end. Wayne Blackshear has a tendency to disappear in big games, will he show up this weekend?

 Anthony (Syracuse): Nothing was more disappointing than the injury to Chris McCullough.  Count me in the group that thinks that this could be a very good thing for him–he needs more work.  Maybe he will enter the draft, but showing up every night and being hit or miss probably was not helping his cause.  Very proud of the team holding serve and beating the teams it is supposed to beat.  The ACC is tough top to bottom.  No bad wins.
2.  What surprised you or disappointed you with the ACC?
Brian (FSU):  Duke getting handled by two un-ranked teams. Yes one is a rival. Yes they are both good teams. But to be beat by double digits in back to back games… that is hardly the sign of an elite team.  I think the top of the ACC is suddenly wide open.
Harrison (NC State): I’ll steer clear of NC State’s win and talk about UNC and Louisville. In what was a very entertaining game, UNC defeated the Cardinals with some late game heroics. I’m still not really sure what to think of the Tar Heels as they have had some of bigger ups and downs in the conference. Meanwhile, Louisville is still one of the best teams in the country with its only other loss coming at Kentucky. Both teams look dangerous coming down the stretch.
Len K (Louisville): The ACC has seen its fair share of upsets this season, will they continue? Notre Dame, NC State, Syracuse & Miami are all playing great ball right now & any one of them can break into the top four of the ACC. The bottom half of the conference is looking strong as well. Manning is making an immediate impact at Wake Forest. Its going to be a fun season.
Anthony (Syracuse): How about how good the bottom of the ACC is?  There are no pushovers.  Each team may be good enough for some post-season tourney.  It cannot happen, as they will beat up on each other.  But that has been a surprising development.
3.  Anything noteworthy outside of the ACC?
Brian (FSU): Kentucky had yet another close call against A&M.  I think Kentucky will drop a game, it is just a matter of when.  Of course as I say this statement Kentucky is utterly destroying Missouri by almost 50 points. If Kentucky loses in the regular season it will be either this Saturday, January 24th, Feb 7th, Feb 10th, Feb 28th, or March 3rd.

 If I had to lay money down it will be on Feb 10th against LSU on the road. The reason is on the 7th they will be at UF, who I think will fight Kentucky, but I see the Wildcats pulling it out. Then only 3 days later Kentucky goes to LSU.  In terms of offense, rebounds, passing the ball, and efficiency LSU is actually very similar to Kentucky.  In fact, LSU has a better field goal %. I think if a tired Kentucky team goes to LSU, they might get upset. 

Harrison (NC State): Former ACC member Maryland continues to be look impressive as they have taken an early lead in the B1G. I know that many people, myself included, didn’t see Maryland as a top 15 team especially after their sub-par finish in the ACC last year.  The Big 12 is surprisingly competitive this year in basketball with 7 teams in this week’s top 25. We all knew about Kansas and the other usuals, but teams like Oklahoma State and West Virginia have seemingly come out of nowhere.

Len K (Louisville): I’m going to step away from basketball here this week. First I want to congratulate Cards volleyball player Katie George for being crowned Miss Kentucky recently. Secondly lets talk about the first football playoffs. Ohio St winning the championship proves that there is parity in college football. The difference between the power 5 compasses isn’t that great. It also shows that the B1G is stil a solid Football Conference. You can also make a strong argument now of how the BCS system was flawed with #4 winning the title.
Anthony (Syracuse): Rutgers beating Wisconsin. 

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