The first day of the ACC Tournament brought no surprises, and now the conference’s top four teams will hope to avoid an upset.
Boston College cruised past Georgia Tech, while NC State routed Virginia Tech, Maryland had few problems with Wake Forest and Florida State overcame a slow start to take down Clemson.
With the exception of the Seminoles, each game was decided by a comfortable margin, and the team's that had a day off will be trying to make sure the surprised do not start.
Here is a look at the bracket, and my predictions for each game on Day 2 of the ACC Tournament.
No. 8 Boston College vs. No. 1 Miami
It would be a massive surprise if the Hurricanes did not reach the final in this competition.
The only team left in the competition that was able to beat Miami during the regular season is Duke, and the conference’s two top seeds will not meat until the ACC Championship.
Jim Larranaga’s team is not only talented, but also has experience and senior leadership from players like Kenny Kadji and Durand Scott. Miami will not get caught sleeping in this game and will cruise past Boston College.
Prediction: Miami 78, Boston College 64
No. 5 NC State vs. No. 4 Virginia
The seeding suggests that this will be the most competitive game of the day, and this will end up being true.
These teams will bring conflicting styles to the court as the Wolfpack will try to push the pace with their explosive offense, and the Cavaliers will be relying on their stout defense to win the game.
In the only meeting between the two this season, Virginia squeaked by with a 58-55 victory behind excellent defense and 22 points from Joe Harris. This time around, Harris will once again deliver a big performance and help his team to a close victory.
Prediction: Virginia 61, NC State 60
No. 7 Maryland vs. No. 2 Duke
Maryland’s biggest win of the season came against Duke, and in that game, the Terrapins out-rebounded the Blue Devils 38-11.
Alex Len and the Terps’ frontcourt ranks second in the nation in rebounds per game, and to have any chance against the Blue Devils, it will need to dominate on the glass again. However, Ryan Kelly is now back from his injury, and this is a huge boost for the Blue Devils’ frontcourt.
With Kelly back in the lineup, Duke will be better on the boards and will be able to stretch the Maryland defense. There will not be another upset in this matchup.
Prediction: Duke 83, Maryland 71
No. 6 Florida State vs. No. 3 North Carolina
The Tar Heels are not the same dominant force that they have been in other years, but there is still talent on this team.
James Michael McAdoo and P.J. Hairston are capable of huge scoring outputs, and they will be motivated to remove the “underachiever” label that has followed North Carolina this season.
The Seminoles looked vulnerable against Clemson, and the team will not be able to win another game in the tournament.
Prediction: North Carolina 72, Florida State 64
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