The last couple of years haven't been the best for the ACC in the tournament. In 2006, the ACC only got four teams in, although they went a respectable 6-4. The last two years brought seven and four teams, respectively, and both years only North Carolina made it past the first weekend. The ACC needs a good postseason, but I don't think this is going to be that year. To wit:
- Maryland has the worst efficiency margin of any remotely major conference team. Put them up against a California team that, although not great, has rarely lost to a team beneath them (except Oregon State, twice.) and no one really gives the Terps much of a chance to get out of the first round.
- Boston College draws the Pac-10 tournament champion in the first round, and shares a pod with the strongest Big Ten School. That coupled with a low RPI that has some people arguing they're horribly overseeded spells trouble for the Eagles. They also have the second worst efficiency margin among major conference teams.
- Clemson enters the tournament having lost four of their last five games, including an embarrassment of an ACC Tournament performance. They draw a Michigan team no one can make heads or tails of, but even if they win that game they must get past an Oklahoma team playing on a near-home court.
- Florida State is taking a team of tournament neophytes to a first round game in Boise, Idaho. There they meet Wisconsin, a team with a much better efficiency margin and the bruisers to play with the Seminoles' bigs. The only bright side is that the Badger's slow tempo plays to FSU's strengths.
- Wake Forest is another team with no players with NCAA tournament experience and a poor ACC tournament performance. To make it out of their pod they'll have to stop a Utah team that beat LSU by 30 points.
- Duke is getting buzz for being "back" after an ACC Tournament crown and the Eliot Williams / Greg Paulus substitution. The Greensboro crowd shoud get them to the Sweet Sixteen, although Rick Barnes is a little familiar with Duke basketball. If they make it to Boston they'll almst certainly have a gauntlet of Big East teams in Villanova and Pittsburgh waiting for them, and there's just no way they'll make it out of there.
- North Carolina is North Carolina. If Ty Lawson is back by Saturday, they'll be fine.