ACC Tournament 2013: Predicting How the Rest of the Tournament Will Play Out

Josh BenjaminCorrespondent IMarch 16, 2013

Feb 2, 2013; Chapel Hill, NC, USA; North Carolina Tar Heels head coach Roy Williams reacts with guard/forward Reggie Bullock (35) and forward James Michael McAdoo (43) in the second half. The Tar Heels defeated the Hokies 72-60 at the Dean E. Smith Center. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

The Miami Hurricanes have earned a spot in the ACC tournament championship game, but just who they'll face remains to be seen—what with Maryland and UNC's semifinal matchup currently underway.

This conference tournament is just anyone's for the taking. The remaining teams each have what is necessary to run the table in the championship game and earn a spot in the NCAA tournament, though the 'Canes and the Tar Heels should already have trips booked there.

The fact is that the remainder of the tournament could go in so many different directions, but playing psychic is a hobby of mine that becomes more fun when sports are involved. That said, let's have a look at a prediction of how the rest of the ACC tournament will go down.


Semifinals: Maryland vs. North Carolina

Maryland definitely has momentum on its side following a shocking defeat of the Duke Blue Devils on Friday night. However, they face a different type of giant in North Carolina.

While Duke is a team whose attack relies heavily on shooting threes and spacing the floor, the Tar Heels are more about driving the lane and mixing up the attack. From James McAdoo to P.J. Hairston, this team has a great deal of players that can immediately shoulder the load and carry the team to victory.

The same cannot be said for Maryland, who rode a 30-point performance from sophomore and regular season leading scorer Dez Wells to an upset victory over Duke. If he's off his game against UNC, then the Terps could be out of the race from the get-go.

Whether or not Wells is able to be as electrifying as he was against Duke, this game is the Tar Heels' for the taking. They have the more balanced team and an incredibly experienced coach in Roy Williams.

By combining lockdown defense with clutch scoring, UNC will win this game and head to the championship game against Miami.


Championship Game: Miami vs. North Carolina

History is not on North Carolina's side in the event that they make the championship game. They lost to Miami twice this season, on Jan. 10 and Feb. 9, by a combined margin of 35 points.

Though the Tar Heels rank higher than the Hurricanes in scoring, rebounding and assists, it should also be noted that Miami handily defeated Duke on Jan. 23. Granted, Duke got a revenge win on March 2, but the fact that Miami was able to handily defeat them while Duke swept the season series against UNC makes for interesting odds.

In this situation, it will be the Tar Heels' turn for revenge. Thanks to their balanced attack and Miami's over-reliance on guard Shane Larkin, North Carolina will win the ACC tournament and enter the Big Dance with a great deal of momentum at their backs.