Moe talent, more depth, early lead, big win. And I second the Quentin Thomas praise. Moving on:
The Tech-State game: This is by far the biggest upset of the ACC season to date. So why can't I find any analysis explaining how it happened? From the internet, you'd think the game was won on 35 Courtney Fells' dunks. Just because N.C. State is ostensibly a basketball school and Virginia Tech a football one, doesn't make a 1-5 team toppling a 6-1 a foregone conclusion.
So how did State pull it off? From the box score, I'd say with strong interior defense - they reverted Coleman Collins to his non-conference ineffectiveness - coupled with a strong rebounding night, a rarity for the Wolfpack. Add to that an uncharacteristically poor shooting night from the Hokies, possibly spurrred on by Engin Atsur's return, and State has its second straight road win.
The Ref Conspiracy: Back to the Miami game, which apparently singlehandedly marked the great ACC Officials Conspiracy switching its allegiance to UNC. (Except, of course in Wolfpack land, where the refs just hate State.)
On the 28 seconds that got Frank Haith tossed, well, I'm less than convinced. The Hansbrough block was clean. I'm still not sure where in the arc the ball was when Brandan Wright got his hands on it, so I can't fault the officials for choosing one way over the other. As for whether Clemente was out of bounds, I can't tell from YouTube - and ESPN, if you want to show proof that he was, your replay camera angle has to include the floor - but the official was right there in the corner. If he blew the call, he did so completely and with total incompetence.
That being said, you can't control the officials. You can only control your behavior towards them, and as long as Williams doesn't start spending timeouts ignoring his team to lecture the guys in stripes in Krzyzewskiesque fashion, I can't fault him.
And exactly what was the announcer doing saying Haith had to stop the refs from "disrespecting" him? Is this a playground all of a sudden? Either the refs are making the right calls or their not. They aren't "respecting" or "disrespecting" the coaches or the players - they're doing a job, one that demands of them impartiality and judgement. If they're failing at that job, it's a failing of skill, not of disrespect. Too much of the culture of athletics is focused on "respect" to the extent of everything else, and it causes a lot of problems. The last thing ESPN needs to be doing is encouraging that mindset.
Oh, and for the statistically-minded among the conspiracy folks, I'll reprint the free-throws scored per possession stat and opponent's free throw opportunities from Monday. Both Duke and UNC are middle-of-the-pack this season in both.
Teams FTP OFTO Virginia (5-2) 0.403 0.437 Boston College (6-2) 0.390 0.263 Florida State (3-4) 0.337 0.280 Maryland (2-4) 0.322 0.426 North Carolina (5-1) 0.267 0.288 Virginia Tech (6-1) 0.265 0.396 Duke (5-2) 0.257 0.408 Georgia Tech (2-5) 0.256 0.466 Miami (2-5) 0.251 0.420 NC State (1-5) 0.223 0.285 Wake Forest (1-7) 0.192 0.457 Clemson (4-4) 0.119 0.348