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By Popular Demand–the ACC Survivor Pool is Back for 2016!

The Confidential’s Survivor Pool is back for 2016!  2015 went down to the wire… see results here.  For 2016, we are back, continuing the double-elimination format!  Sign up today!

We are limiting this to the first 100 entrants.  Last year’s entrants were given a heads up to join.  Now opening this up to all ACC fans. 

Winner gets $50.00 via PayPal.  See the official rules here:

Pool ID Number: 115035
Pool Entry Code: n*rbaa

With thousands of ACC fans, sign up today!

The Confidential’s 2016 Football Over-Under: Virginia Tech

Happy Independence Day!  Last year, the Confidential unveiled over-unders for each ACC school. For Virginia Tech, the over-under was set at 6.5 regular season wins. Ultimately, Frank Beamer’s last season resulted in 6 wins (under) and a bowl win, allowing him to go out on a great streak of 23 straight bowl appearances.  But now it is on to 2016 and a new coach. The Confidential sets the over-under for Va Tech at 7.5 regular season wins.

Here is the schedule for 2016, courtesy of a great college football website:

9/3 Sat vs. Liberty
9/10 Sat @ Tennessee
9/17 Sat vs. *Boston College
9/24 Sat vs. East Carolina
10/8 Sat @ *North Carolina
10/15 Sat @ *Syracuse
10/20 Thu vs. *Miami (Florida)
10/27 Thu @ *Pittsburgh
11/5 Sat @ *Duke
11/12 Sat vs. *Georgia Tech
11/19 Sat @ Notre Dame
11/26 Sat vs. *Virginia

Very likely wins: Liberty, Boston College, Syracuse, Virginia

Very likely losses: Notre Dame

Verdict: Like Miami, it is hard to know whether a new coach will take a step back or step forward.  Or neither.  Virginia Tech lost a legend, make no mistake.  In the end, every game is winnable, while upsets of the Hokies are certainly possible as well.  Tennessee will be a huge test, as the Volunteers should be a very good squad.  At the same time, East Carolina always plays the Hokies tough.  There are few guarantees.  The Confidential sets the over-under at 7.5 wins.

What do you think? Will BC go over or under 7.5 regular season wins?

NBA Draft Recap

The Confidential notes that the ACC was well-represented in last week’s NBA draft.  Indeed, the following ACC players were drafted:

  • Duke’s Brandon Ingram went #2 to the Lakers
  • Florida State’s Malik Beasley went #19 to the Nuggets
  • Syracuse’s Malachi Richardson went #22 to the Hornets
  • North Carolina’s Brice Johnson went #25 to the Clippers
  • Virginia’s Malcolm Brogdon went #36 to the Bucks
  • Louisville’s Chinanu Onuaku went #37 to the Rockets
  • Notre Dame’s Demetrius Jackson went #45 to the Celtics
  • Syracuse’s Michael Gbinije went #49 to the Pistons
  • North Carolina’s Marcus Paige went #55 to the Nets

Thus, 9 of the 60 draftees were ACC products.  Of course, with 15 foreign players drafted, 9 of 45 college players drafted were from the ACC.  This is a solid 20%.  With college basketball being so much deeper than college football, this is an outstanding percentage for any conference.


The Confidential’s 2016 Football Over-Under: Syracuse

Last year, the Confidential unveiled over-unders for each ACC school.  For Syracuse, the over-under was set at 5.5 regular season wins.  Ultimately, the Orange fell short of that, resulting in a coaching change.  This year, there is optimism with a new coaching staff and scheme–but concern regarding the defense and the ordinarily challenging OOC schedule.  The Confidential sets the over-under for Syracuse at 4.5 regular season wins.

Here is the schedule for 2016:

  • 9/2/16: Colgate
  • 9/9/16: Louisville
  • 9/17/16: South Florida
  • 9/24/16: @ UConn
  • 10/1/16: Notre Dame (neutral site)
  • 10/8/16: @ Wake Forest
  • 10/15/16: Virginia Tech
  • 10/22/16: @ Boston College
  • 11/5/16: @ Clemson
  • 11/12/16: NC State
  • 11/19/16: Florida State
  • 11/26/16: @ Pitt

Very likely wins: Colgate, UConn

Very likely losses: Notre Dame, Clemson, Florida State, Pitt

Verdict: Syracuse has struggled to beat Pitt on the road (since 2001) and is a long shot to beat Notre Dame, Clemson, or Florida State.  Still, it is not hard to believe that the team cannot find a few wins among USF, Wake Forest, Boston College, and North Carolina State.  Also, look for Dino Babers’ squad to pull at least one mild upset–perhaps Louisville or Virginia Tech.  A bowl game may be a year away though.  The Confidential sets the over-under at 4.5 wins.

What do you think?  Will Syracuse go over or under 4.5 regular season wins?

The Confidential’s 2016 Football Over-Under: Notre Dame

Last year, the Confidential unveiled over-unders for each ACC school.  For Notre Dame, the over-under was set at 9.5 regular season wins.  Ultimately, the Fighting Irish ended up with 10 regular season wins, with losses at Clemson and Stanford being the only regular season blemishes.  But now it is on to 2016.  The Confidential sets the over-under for Notre Dame at 10.5 regular season wins.

Here is the schedule for 2016:

  • 9/4/16: @ Texas
  • 9/10/16: Nevada
  • 9/17/16: Michigan State
  • 9/24/16: Duke
  • 10/1/16: Syracuse (neutral site)
  • 10/8/16: @ NC State
  • 10/15/16: Stanford
  • 10/29/16: Miami
  • 11/5/16: Army
  • 11/12/16: Navy
  • 11/19/16: Virginia Tech
  • 11/26/16: @ USC

Very likely wins: Nevada, Syracuse, @ NC State, Army, Navy

Very likely losses: Texas or USC

Verdict: Wow… pretty rare to see a football schedule with only three road games.  The neutral site game against Syracuse will likely be a de facto home game.  How can Notre Dame not have a great season?   Well, do not sleep on Michigan State, Duke, Miami, and Va Tech.  And Stanford is always a potential loss.  Meanwhile, one of Texas or USC–elite programs struggling recently–can pull off a home win over Notre Dame.  Still, this is a very favorable schedule.  The over/under, therefore, is set at 10.5 wins.

What do you think?  Will Notre Dame go over or under 10.5 regular season wins?

Syracuse’s Carrier Dome to Be Renovated, Fixed Translucent Roof

No real reason to re-invent the wheel here.  Check out the discussion on the Syracuse blog: TNIIAM.  Pretty exciting news for Syracuse sports.


GottfriedWith the news last week that NC State would lose 3 of their key players from this past season, the tactics of coach Mark Gottfried were once again called into question. It’s become a pattern now. Every year, the team finishes better than expected with one player leading the way, but it’s the exodus of talent that follows causes fans to pause. Why are so many players leaving, year after year? Let’s take a look at the roster turnover in the Gottfried era

.Screen Shot 2016-04-12 at 11.46.56 AM

Gottfried’s first season in Raleigh left nothing but high expectations for the next one. A young team that certainly overachieved lost very little headed to the next season. CJ Williams graduated, but the duo of Brown and Leslie looked promising to the next season. Raymond and Harris played very few minutes, so their transfers aren’t a huge deal, but Painter’s departure was curious. He quickly announced that he was transferring to be closer to his family, but that did little to stop the speculation that followed. It still seems like a legitimate reason, but skeptics will point to this being the beginning of a trend

Screen Shot 2016-04-12 at 11.47.24 AM

The second year is what many point to when they criticize Gottfried. For perhaps the only time in his career at NC State, he actually had all the pieces. He had a deep roster with plenty of talent, but yet suffered an early exit from the NCAA tournament. Losing an 8/9 game usually isn’t too disappointing, but the way this team ended the season left many wanting more. The disappointing season and disfunction among the team made the draft announcements from Brown and Leslie a little less surprising. The bigger surprise came from Rodney Purvis when he announced he was going to UConn. The freshman probably didn’t play as much as he would have liked, but you would assume with six players leaving he could expect more playing time in the future. Thaey’s transfer is a whole other issue, one that Sports Illustrated already covered. Still, each of the three early departures were out of the blue and leaving fans  confused.

Screen Shot 2016-04-12 at 11.47.47 AM

The cupboard looked pretty bare with Brown and Leslie gone, but T.J. Warren quickly changed fans’ perception of the team. Warren was no slouch his freshman year, but as he moved into his role as the Wolfpack’s star player, he showed his true potential. Of course, that got the NBA interested, and to Warren’s credit, he’s made a solid pro career to this point. The transfer to Tyler Lewis to Butler was also understandable, as the sophomore saw fewer and fewer minutes as Anthony “Cat” Barber blossomed into the star point guard he would become in years after. Overall this year was probably the least surprising of any. Sure the two departures were a bit sudden, but both seemed reasonable.

Screen Shot 2016-04-12 at 11.48.02 AM

Alabama transfer Trevor Lacey was the supposed to be the key addition and the shooter that NC State needed. He turned out to be all of that and more. Essentially, Lacey became TJ Warren part 2. His similar playing style gave him a similar role on the team. Barber and Anya found their roles, and other players like Lee, Turner, and the Martins contributed for a deep run in the NCAA tournament. Next year seemed promising, with most of the talent returning. Yet, Lacey quickly declared for the draft and soon after, Kyle Washington transferred to Cincinnati. Both were unexpected, and while the verdict is still out on Washington, Lacey hasn’t made  much of his pro career.

Screen Shot 2016-04-12 at 11.48.17 AM

A down recruiting year along with the late departures of Lacey and Washington left NC State with just 12 players on the roster. This will probably be considered the worst team of the Gottfried era, since they didn’t make any tournament and finished very low in the ACC. However, the one bright spot was Cat Barber. One year removed from being a supporting member, Barber took over the ACC as one of the conference’s top players. With little support, the team didn’t win many games. After the season ended, Barber announced he would enter the draft and while he hasn’t singed an agent, sources indicate that he’s likely gone. It’s a little puzzling, seeing as Barber would likely be a frontrunner for ACC Player of the Year, but he’s likely taking a cue from his former teammates (Warren and Lacey). Shortly after that announcement, news came that the Martin twins intended to transfer. This was the strange announcement. Most reports say that Cody was going to see less playing time due to incoming transfers, and wanted to find somewhere where both brothers could play. Still, you’d think they’d at least wait a year to see how their playing time is effected. The new transfers are anything but sure things, and it’s quite possible both brother could’ve seen lots of minutes. Abdul-Malik Abu is also reported to be exploring his draft options, but most feel that he will return.

Final Thoughts

So where does this leave us? Well, throughout Mark Gottfried’s tenure at NC State, we’ve seen a troubling trend of top talent leaving early. It’s sort of a “glass half empty/full” situation. On the bright side, Gottfried has been exceptional at replacing talent and bringing in new stars. The fact that there is a new star each year is impressive, and a testament to his recruiting ability. On the other hand, why are these players in such a hurry to get out? If any of the players had stayed just one more year, they’d be paired with another star to make an exceptional team. But maybe it’s a good thing, maybe Barber would have taken points away from Lacey. We’ll never know, but it’s clear that Gottfried can bring talent in, but can’t seem to hold on to it. Next year will be a very pivotal year. If the newcomers are as good as advertised and the team makes another tournament run, then we can revisit if this “strategy” is working. If these newcomers struggle, then you have to start questioning whether Gottfried is the right man for the job. What are your thoughts? Is this just another example of one-and-done’s hurting the college games? Why are so many NC State players leaving?

Final Confidential Bracket Contest Results!

Some folks hate North Carolina enough to be glad to see them lose last night, but other ACC fans would have preferred to see another notch in the conference belt.  Either way, congratulations to Villanova for winning it all.  As for the Confidential Bracket Contest, Lenville was able to hold off the competition and squeak to a 150-149 win.  As such, he wins the final prize!  Congrats!

Here is a link to the final standings.  Thanks to all that entered… please come back in the fall for fantasy college football!  And here is the final Top 10:


Correct Picks
Bonus Pts
Total Pts


The ACC in the Final Four

With North Carolina defending its #1 seed against Syracuse, who went from bubble to Houston, it is yet another season with the ACC being well-represented in the Final Four.  How often has the ACC had a representative?  Well, here is your answer (champions in bold, current members that were not in the ACC at the time in italics, former members that were in the ACC at that time in strikethrough):

2016: North Carolina, Syracuse

2015: Duke

2013: Syracuse, Louisville

2012: Louisville

2010: Duke

2009: North Carolina

2008: North Carolina

2005: North Carolina, Louisville

2004: Duke, Georgia Tech

2003: Syracuse

2002: Maryland

2001: Duke, Maryland

2000: North Carolina

1999: Duke

1998: North Carolina

1997: North Carolina

1996: Syracuse

1995: North Carolina

1994: Duke

1993: North Carolina

1992: Duke

1991: Duke, North Carolina

1990: Duke, Georgia Tech

1989: Duke

1988: Duke

1987: Syracuse

1986: Louisville, Duke

1984: Virginia

1983: North Carolina State

1982: North Carolina, Louisville

1981: North Carolina, Virginia

1980: Louisville

1978: Duke, Notre Dame

1977: North Carolina

1975: Syracuse, Louisville

1974: North Carolina State

1972: North Carolina, Florida State, Louisville

1969: North Carolina

1968: North Carolina

1967: North Carolina

1966: Duke

1964: Duke

1963: Duke

1962: Wake Forest

1959: Louisville

1957: North Carolina

ACC was formed in 1953

1950: North Carolina State

1946: North Carolina

1941: Pittsburgh

As you can see, the ACC and Final Four go together quite nicely.  Even limiting it to conference affiliation at the time of the Final Four, that is 33 ACC schools in 35 Final Fours from 1981 to 2016.  Pretty.  Darn.  Impressive.








15 Hours to Enter Free Confidential Bracket Contest! Prize!

In what is now an annual tradition, the Confidential will have another bracket contest in 2016.

We will give out a first prize of $25.00 via Pay Pal to the winner (prizes will increase if/when number of entrants increases).

If you think you know basketball, and as a fan of the ACC you SHOULD know basketball, let’s see how well you can do against other fans of ACC schools.  Go here:

Oh, and good luck.  You’ll need it.

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