For the first time in a long time the Power Rankings have a new leader at the top. We’re almost to the halfway point of the ACC slate and it seems like there might be a fourth team joining the top three in the “usually pretty good” category.
To the Rankings
1. Florida State Seminoles (16-2, 6-1). Last week: 2
The Noles took overtime to beat the Hurricanes last weekend and had a bye week this week but where there is carnage around you and you have a 9 game winning streak going, you ascend to the top. Notre Dame in Tallahassee this weekend shouldn’t be difficult but the road games against UVa and VT next week could cement FSU at the top.
2. Louisville Cardinals (16-3, 7-1). Last week: 3
After winning at Cameron last weekend, the Cardinals struggled to put GT away until the final minutes on Wednesday. A fairly easy slate of Clemson and BC over the next week before traveling to Raleigh to play the Wolfpack next weekend.
3. Duke Blue Devils (16-3, 6-2). Last week: 1
Coach K and the boys dropped two straight last week to Clemson and Louisville before curb stomping Miami on Tuesday. They probably aren’t the best team in the ACC this year, but they’ll still end up with no worse than a three seed come tournament time.
4. NC State Wolfpack (14-5, 5-3). Last week: 4
Outside of beating Maimi by 17, none of NC State’s wins have been truly dominant. A 6 point win over Clemson last weekend and a 2 point road win over UVa are the last two, but ACC wins are all that matter. Keatts is putting together a nice tournament resume for the Wolfpack winning the games they are supposed to win.
5. Syracuse Orange (12-7, 5-3). Last week: 10
That overtime win over the Hoos a few weeks ago seemingly springboarded the Orange and they’ve now won four straight including a road win in Blacksburg last weekend. Pitt and Clemson over the next week should be two more wins for Boeheim before they play Duke in the Carrier Dome next weekend.
6. Virginia Tech Hokies (14-5, 5-3). Last week: 5
I hope none of you subjected yourself to watching the two overtimes VT had with UNC on Wednesday night. I did. It was not pretty basketball but credit to VT to making a hard bucket when it mattered most and outlasting the 5ish basketball players UNC has on its roster right now.
7. Virginia Cavaliers (12-6, 4-4). Last week: 7
Losers of four of the last five games and had leads at the 5 minute mark in all of those games. This will likely go down as one of the most frustrating seasons in UVa basketball in recent memory.
8. Clemson Tigers (10-8, 4-4). Last week: 6
UVa : Three Pointers :: Clemson : Free Throws
The Tigers are currently shooting 65% from the line and about gave away their game against Wake Forest on Tuesday when they went 7-18 (38%!). Last weekend’s game against NC State the Tigers were 9-23 (39%). Yeesh.
9. Pittsburgh Panthers (13-6, 4-4). Last week: 12
Winners of two straight against UNC and BC, the Panthers are rewarded with back to back road games at Syracuse and Duke over a four game stretch. The Panthers should be pretty big underdogs in both and will need to rebound over the coming weeks if they have an NIT in their future.
10. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (8-11, 3-6). Last week: 11
The Jackets have been competitive against ND, UVa, and Louisville over their last three and lost all of them with the UVa 5 point loss being the worst. Sometimes the ball doesn’t bounce your way.
11. Notre Dame Fighting Irish (11-7, 2-5). Last week: 8
We’ve generally come to expect more from a Mike Brey Notre Dame team, but this year they just can’t win the close ones. Five of their seven losses have come by a combined thirteen points and four of those five were single possession losses.
12. Boston College Eagles (9-10, 3-5). Last week: 13
Since beating UVa a few weeks ago BC has now lost to Georgia Tech by 19, Syracuse by 16, Wake Forest by 18, and a close Pitt loss by 2. The UVa way in a nutshell.
13. Miami-Florida Hurricanes (10-8, 2-6). Last week: 9
This is Jim Larranaga’s ninth season in Coral Gables and is on track to be his fifth year missing the NCAA tournament in those nine. He’s now been a head coach for 23 years and is 70 years old. He can’t be long for the job at Miami.
14. Wake Forest Demon Deacons (9-9, 2-6). Last week: 15
Unlike the next team, Wake has won a game in 2020. It will be interesting to see if Wake’s new head coach next year can begin a turnaround. Above all else I want to know what Danny Manning has on Brandon Childress because if he could have graduated, he should have gone somewhere else in his senior season.
15. North Carolina Tar Heels (8-10, 1-6). Last week: 14
The year was 2019. North Carolina was not winless and had a .500 record in the ACC. My how times have changed. Luckily for them, four of their signees for next year were announced as McDonald’s All-Americans yesterday! Good for you Glen Coco!