Each week The Chronicle will take a look at the ACC Men's Basketball standings and update you on who is in position to win the Atlantic Coast Conference regular season crown. Here is the ACC standings as of today:
1. Miami (15-3, 6-0); 2. North Carolina State (16-4, 5-2); 3. Duke (17-2, 4-2); 4. Virginia (14-5, 4-2); 5. North Carolina (13-6, 3-3); 6. Florida State (11-8, 3-3); 7. Maryland (15-5, 3-4); 8. Clemson (11-8, 3-4); 9. Wake Forest (10-9, 3-4); 10. Virginia Tech (11-8, 2-4); 11. Georgia Tech (11-7, 1-5); 12. Boston College (9-10, 1-5).
How good is Miami?
Miami is a confusing team this season. The Hurricanes managed to lose to both Florida Gulf Coast and Indiana State—at home—yet has knocked off a number of ranked teams, including then-No. 1 Duke last week. The arrow for Miami seems to be pointing straight up. Senior center Reggie Johnson is back on the court. Point guard Shane Larkin has at least five assists in each of his last four games. Kenny Kadji and Durand Scott can fill up a box score with points. The Hurricanes have a tough test on their hands when they go to Raleigh Saturday to face No. 19 N.C. State, but if they win there, it will prove Miami is here to stay at the top of the ACC.
Is Virginia a threat?
The Cavaliers haven't faced a ranked team yet this season, making it harder to figure out whether they are legitimate contenders in the ACC. However, Virginia does have an interesting body of work to look at. The Cavaliers knocked off Wisconsin early this season, and has also defeated usual ACC top-dogs North Carolina and Florida State. Losses to Clemson and Wake Forest however makes many reconsider whether Virginia is a legitimate tournament team, let alone a threat to the ACC crown. The Cavaliers will pit their strong defense against N.C. State tonight, which will go a long way in determining whether Virginia bears watching moving forward.
Stick a fork in Florida State?
Where is the Florida State team that finished 12-4 in the ACC and earned a No. 3 seed in the NCAA tournament just a year ago. Bernard James is now starting for the Dallas Mavericks and Luke Louks and Deividas Dulkys are gone, but Michael Snaer was expected to keep the Seminoles relevant in the college basketball world. Instead, Snaer's points per game, field goal percentage, and three-point percentage are all down from a year ago and Florida State has already lost three ACC games. Ian Miller, who was scoring in double figures last season is averaging just 6.0 points per game this season. If the Seminoles want to be relevant down the stretch, they need to find a way to resuscitate what was a feared program just a year ago.
Upset Special: Virginia over No. 19 N.C. State
N.C. State just doesn't look like the same team that defeated then-No. 1 Duke two weeks ago. Since knocking off the Blue Devils, the Wolfpack lost to Maryland and Wake Forest on the road, barely edged out a win over Clemson, and disappeared in the second half against North Carolina. Virginia on the other hand, hasn't lost at home since playing Delaware in November and has rebounded from back-to-back losses with three straight wins. Home court advantage gives the Cavaliers the victory when the two teams meet tonight.
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