Time is undefeated. We may be at the beginning of basketball season, but we only have two more weeks of the ACC regular season left to go. That and one week of picking the Championship games, and we’ll have the 2021 Tar Heel Blog picks champion.
Last weekend’s slate was chock full of games, but we didn’t have a lot of places where the staff disagreed. Only Pitt/UNC, Syracuse/Louisville, Miami/FSU, and BC/GT had any sort of conflict. It turns out two of those games had a huge impact on who’ll likely be playing in Charlotte on December 6th.
We don’t need to rehash what happened with Pittsburgh, but a couple of us figured that Miami had another clunker game in them, and with FSU starting to appear like they may have figured some things out under their second year coach, they seemed ripe to pull off an upset. Pitt now is in the driver’s seat for the Coastal, and this weekend’s match against Virginia is going to serve as the Coastal championship game. Pitt outright clinches with a win, UVA gets the tiebreaker and just has to beat a team in Virginia Tech that just fired their coach to guarantee their spot.
Wake, meanwhile, has some wiggle room now as they can stumble once against either Clemson or Boston College and head on to Charlotte themselves. That means that we could actually have the ACC Championship game all set before we even get to Thanksgiving, giving us time to look forward to what actually could be a really fun game, even if there will be way too much gold on the field.
Speaking of champions, let’s see how the pickers are doing so far:
Loyalty to the alma mater kept me from having a perfect week, but I’m rather proud of pegging Miami falling on their face against the Seminoles. It’s clear at this point that some folks are trying to zig while others zag, Joe taking a chance with Georgia Tech, for example, and Evan thinking Syracuse would manage to pull off a win against the Cards.
A new wrinkle with picking the games this week, though, is the news of major changes at two of the schools. Justin Fuente is out of Virginia Tech, and Manny Diaz is facing the fact that he’ll have a new athletic director. The fun part of this news is that Virginia Tech and Miami will be facing each other this weekend, which adds a level of intrigue one wouldn’t expect. The question: did it affect our picks? Let’s see:
Another week of the same. UNC, Louisville, and Notre Dame are all unanimous picks, and the only games that with two staffers disagreeing are Wake/Clemson and FSU/BC. It shows that things are tight now, as we have a leader in Max with two just one game behind. Look for the BC/FSU game to determine whether Max gets a commanding lead or falls back into a three way tie.
Enjoy the weekend’s games everyone!