Here is the wrap of the first quarterfinal session:
#1 Duke 80 #8 Miami 76
AAAAAAAHHHHHHH!!!! (sigh) OK, I'm better now. Duke did not play great, but they played good enough to win. J.J. Redick had 25, shot 5-11 from three point range so it is now safe to assume that Redick is now "emotionally rested." Miami had their chances and proved why they were the #8 seed. Next up for Duke...
#12 Wake Forest 82 #4 NC State 71
Make no mistake, things were pretty bad in Wolfpack country. They lost to UNC by 24, failed to execute and beat Boston College, and laid a giant egg against Wake Forest last week. So they were in a full fledged slide but the games they lost, even at Wake Forest on Senior Day were conceivable losses. That also means that when you get into the conference tournament and get a rematch with the aforementoned 12 seeded Demon Deacons, you should proceed to blow them out and move on. NC State was the conference leader in field goal percentage defense, while Wake was ninth in the conference in offensive field goal percentage. Wake hit 53% of their shots from the floor, well above the NC State average. Wake also outrebounded the Pack 40-21. Those two stats speak of poor defense and poor hustle. NC State's major problem is they show very little effort and intensity. That is the only explanation for getting outrebounded and giving up open shots. Is that a coaching problem? It is the feeling among many Pack fans that Herb Sendek does not possess the intensity to spurn his players to play at the level necessary to win a title in this conference. I am beginning to think they may be right and that Sendek has done a great job of building the program's foundation but that is as much as he can do. Perhaps now is the time for NC State to bring in a coach who can bring it to his team so they can bring it on the court. NC State is still NCAA bound but if they lay down and drop the 1st round game for a fifth loss in a row, there may be rumblings in Raleigh,