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March 10, 2011
#9 MIAMI vs. #8 VIRGINIA
Hurricanes vs. Cavaliers: Miami claimed a 70-68 overtime victory over the visiting Cavs on Feb. 5. Miami overcame a seven-point deficit with 1:45 left in regulation to force OT. The Cavs shot 47 percent from the floor but went 9-for-22 from the foul line. ... The teams have met once in ACC Tournament play. The 11th-seeded Cavaliers upended the No. 6 Hurricanes in Miami's first appearance in the event, the first round of 2005.
On Miami: For Miami, this year's contest with Virginia was the seventh in a stretch of eight consecutive games decided by four or fewer points. That's the longest string of nail-biters in ACC history. It surpasses the mark of six by the 1981-82 Cavaliers, whose opponents were disproportionately included to play stall-ball because there was no shot clock and the Cavs had three-time national Player of the Year Ralph Sampson in the middle. ... Junior guard Malcolm Grant, an eventual third-team All-ACC player, shot better than the national average from the 3-point line in six of the Canes' final seven regular-season games. In that span, he went 20-for-40 from downtown. ... Miami, like five other ACC teams, has played in the Greensboro Coliseum this season. The Canes defeated UNC Greensboro on Feb. 15. ... Miami is 5-6 in the ACC Tournament, including upsets over No. 5 Wake Forest and No. 4 Virginia Tech while seeded 12th a year ago. The Canes are 3-2 in tourney games in Greensboro. ... Durand Scott had a big tournament, going 16-for-27 from the floor in games with Virginia Tech and Duke.
On Virginia: The Cavaliers have won four of their past five games. In those four victories , they went 37-for-80 (.463) in 3-point shooting. It's the hottest they've been as they enter the ACC Tournament in since 2001, when they also went 4-1 down the stretch. ... The Cavs' total of seven regular-season ACC wins is their best since 2007. ... UVa is 31-56 in the ACC Tournament and has one championship to its credit. The 1976 club won the title as the sixth seed out of seven, upending three nationally ranked teams along the way. ... The school's ticket manager for that tournament was none other than current ACC commissioner John D. Swofford. ... The Cavs, 13-22 in the tournament in Greensboro, have lost 16 of their past 20 games in the coliseum. ... Joe Harris' 41.6-percent 3-point shooting accuracy rate is the best by an ACC freshman since 1997-98, when Archie Miller of NC State shot 42.3 percent and Robert O'Kelley of Wake Forest checked in at 42.1. Ties: CEOs of both schools have ties to the Executive Branch of the U.S. government. Thomas Jefferson, the nation's third president, founded UVa in 1819. Donna Shalala, the current president of Miami, was President Clinton's secretary of education.
#12 WAKE FOREST VS. #5 BOSTON COLLEGE
Demon Deacons vs. Eagles: The teams are playing for the second time in less than a week. The homestanding Eagles shot 58 percent from the floor in an 84-68 win on Sunday. Led by Corey Raji's 21, BC's five seniors accounted for 63 points. ... The teams are meeting in the ACC Tournament for the third straight year. The Eagles claimed a 76-63 win in Atlanta in the first round of 2009 and the Cavaliers ended a nine-game losing streak with a 68-62 triumph in Greensboro in last year's first round.
Ties: TV. Herb Scannell, a 1979 BC grad, is the president of BBC Worldwide America, which is available on Dish Network, co-founded by Wake MBA graduate Charlie Ergen.
On Wake Forest: Senior guard Gary Clark is 49-for-89 from the 3-point line. His accuracy rate of 55.1 percent is the third-best on 50 or more attempts in a single season in ACC history. ... Clark has scored more points this season (334) than he amassed in his first three years combined (211). ... Travis McKie will tie Tim Duncan for the most starts by a Wake Forest freshman (32) if he gets the call, as expected, in Thursday's ACC Tournament first-round game. ... McKie was the second-leading vote-getter in voting for the ACC's All-Freshman team. He was named on 74 of 75 ballots.
On Boston College: Reggie Jackson became the fourth Eagle to earn first-team All-ACC honors in the past six years. In that span, only Duke (seven) has had more different players on the first team. ... The Eagles are in the top three in the league in overall and 3-point field-goal percentage. ... Jackson is shooting 49 percent from the floor, the third-best figure by an ACC guard this season. He averaged more than 19 points a game on 51-percent shooting over the Eagles' final seven regular-season games. ... Swing man Joe Trapani earned third-team All-ACC honors for the second straight year.
#10 NC STATE VS. #7 MARYLAND
Wolfpack vs. Terrapins: Maryland claimed the teams' only regular-season meeting, an 87-80 verdict in College Park on Feb. 20. Freshman guard Terrell Stoglin and sophomore center Jordan Williams each scored 26 points and senior forward Dino Gregory contributed a career-high 18 as the Terrapins ran their winning streak over NC State to eight games. Scott Wood went 5-for-7 from the 3-point line, including baskets on three straight possessions, as the Pack staged a first-half comeback. ... The Pack will seek its first victory over the Terps since a 62-58 decision in the RBC Center on Feb. 5, 2006. In the ongoing streak, Maryland's average victory margin has been 15.6 points. ... State has won 11 of the 18 meetings in the ACC Tournament, including the mythologized, 103-100 overtime game in Greensboro in the 1974 championship.
Ties: NC State athletics director Debbie Yow held the same job at Maryland from 1994 until the summer of 2010.
On NC State: One sophomore (Wood) and three freshmen (Lorenzo Brown, C.J. Leslie and Ryan Harrow) top the Wolfpack's minutes-played list. As a result, the Pack is among the least seasoned teams in the country. A metric on www.statsheet.com says 92 percent of the Division I populace has more experience than NC State. ... The Wolfpack seems especially dangerous as the underdog in the ACC Tournament. It has gone 13-12 when seeded lower than its opponent over the past 14 years. Seeding suggests, of course, that State should have been 0-12 when playing as the numerical underdog. Included in that 14-year stretch is a pair of runs to the final as an especially low seed. State made the title game in 1997 while seeded eighth of nine teams and did it again a decade later when 10th out of 12. ... NC State is 21-20 with two championships (1973, 1974) in this building. ... Leslie is an All-Freshman teamer after scoring in double figures in seven of his final nine regular-season appearances.
On Maryland: The Terrapins will try to halt the three-game losing streak they bring into the tournament. ... Sophomore center Jordan Williams has posted 23 double-doubles. That's the most by an ACC underclassman (freshman or sophomore); the most by any player in the league since Wake Forest senior Tim Duncan had a record 29 in 1997; and good for ninth place in league history. With one more, he'll move into a fifth-place tie. ... Stoglin is 30-for-33 (.909) from the foul line over his past six games and is averaging 19 points a game in that span. ... The Terps lead the ACC in field-goal percentage (.472) for the second straight year. If the lead stands, this will mark the first time that a program other than North Carolina has paced the ACC in field-goal percentage in consecutive years since Duke from 1991-93. The Terps are seeking consecutive titles in that category for the first time since 1980 and '81. ... Williams (11.6 rpg) is seeking to become the first Terrapin to lead the ACC in rebounding since Joe Smith in 1994 (10.7). His current average is the best by any ACC player since Duncan grabbed 14.7 a game in 1997.
#11 GEORGIA TECH VS. #6 VIRGINIA TECH
Jackets vs. Hokies: The teams split their regular-season meetings in 2010-11. The Yellow Jackets held the Hokies to 1-for-11 3-point shooting and forced 18 turnovers in a 72-57 win in Atlanta on Jan. 25. Brian Oliver, who had 28 points to lead Tech that night, hasn't played since Feb. 5 because of a broken left thumb, but he is expected to play this weekend. Iman Shumpert, who became a second-team All-ACC selection, delivered 22 for the Jackets. The Hokies claimed the rematch in Blacksburg 102-77 on Feb. 13, amassing their highest point total in a regulation-time ACC game. Malcolm Delaney, an eventual first-team All-ACC pick, scored 33 points and Jeff Allen, who made the second team, offered 25 points and 14 rebounds. The teams have met once in ACC Tournament play. Georgia Tech handed Virginia Tech, making its first appearance in the event, a 73-54 loss in Washington in 2005. ...
Ties: This is a meeting of teams with highly similar marketing slogans for the 2010-11 season. Georgia Tech's going with "I'm All In." Virginia Tech: "I'm In. All In."
On Georgia Tech: Coach Paul Hewitt's Jackets seek a repeat of 2010, when they emerged from the No. 7 seed to make the final. That included a quarterfinal victory over No. 2 Maryland, the co-champion in regular-season play, in which they shot 8-for-12 from the 3-point line. ... All of Tech's past six ACC Tournament games have been decided by five or fewer points; the Jackets are 4-2 in that span. ... All told, the Jackets are 24-28 in the event with championships in 1985, 1990 and 1993. They are 8-13 in Greensboro. ... The Jackets come in on a two-game winning streak, having defeated Wake Forest and Miami to end the regular season. Those games were preceded by highly competitive efforts against Virginia and NC State. ... Iman Shumpert is leading the Jackets in scoring (17.5), rebounds (6.1), assists (3.5) and steals (2.7). He is likely to become only the fourth player in ACC history to pace his team in all three of those departments in a season. ... Shumpert is tops in the league in steals. ... Freshman center Daniel Miller has blocked five or more shots in four games this season, including five on Maryland and Duke.
Virginia Tech: The Hokies are 3-6 in the ACC Tournament, having earned quarterfinal victories in 2007, 2008 and 2009. They are 0-2 in Greensboro in the tourney. This is their second visit to the coliseum this season; they defeated UNC Greensboro 92-70 on Nov. 21. ... The Hokies are 6-2 when shooting above the national average (.345) from the 3-point line in ACC play and 3-5 when below the standard. ... They have committed 13 or fewer turnovers in seven of their past eight games but are 4-4 in that span. ... Malcolm Delaney has scored in double figures in 26 of 29 games this season, including the past 10. ... Tech has been hurt by a injury that cost guard Dorenzo Hudson nearly all of the year, but center Jeff Allen has mitigated the impact by having a solid senior campaign. With better conditioning and better defensive decisions, Allen has played six more minutes a game this year than last, and he's second in the ACC in rebounding (10.0). Allen is one blocked shot away from becoming the first player in ACC history with 1,500 or more points, 1,000 or more rebounds, 200 or more steals and 150 or more blocks.