ACC Quarterfinal Friday: An in-depth look at each matchup

Day one was a doozy, here's a look ahead to Friday's quarterfinal round.

#1 Duke vs.


#9 Virginia, 12:00 p.m.


Regular season results – Duke 67-49 at Virginia on Feb. 28

Team records – Duke 26-5 (13-3) Virginia 15-5 (6-11)

Projected starters –

Duke

G- Jon Scheyer (18.9 ppg, 40% 3pt, 89% FT)

G- Nolan Smith (17.6 ppg, 3.0 apg)

F- Kyle Singler (17.2 ppg, 6.8 rpg)

F- Lance Thomas (5.0 ppg, 5.0 rpg)

C- Brian Zoubek (5.4 ppg, 7.3 rpg)

Virginia (ACC Tournament stats)

G- Mustapha Farrakhan (10 points, 4 assists)

G- Sammy Zeglinski (21 points, 5-10 3pt)

G- Jeff Jones (14 points, 3-5 3pt)

F- Mike Scott (11 points, 13 rebounds)

C- Jerome Meyinsse (12 points, 4 rebounds)

Team statistical comparison –

DUKE

STAT

UVA

79.1

Points per game

66.0

38.9%

Three-point percentage

35.2%

39.2

Rebounds per game

34.0

27.1%

Opponents 3-point %

35.6

Overview –

This one really shouldn’t be very close. The number that jumps off the page with Duke is three-point shooting both offensively and defensively. Not only do the Blue Devils shoot 39 percent from behind the arc, but also they are the number one team in the country in three-point percentage on defense. Duke averages 23.4 points per game from threes, while its opponents average only 10.1.

Virginia already exceeded expectations by snapping a nine-game losing streak sans its leading scorer in round one. Sammy Zeglinski erupted against Boston College, shooting 50 percent from beyond the arc. Virginia is not a very strong outside shooting team typically, but would need a similar performance on Friday to even hang close.

Plain and simple, Duke has too much size for Virginia to handle. The Devils constantly throw large bodies out on the floor, and Virginia is not deep enough to hang around. Expect Nolan Smith and Kyle Singler to have huge games. It would not be surprising to see one or both creep towards the 30-point mark in this game.

Virginia’s best chance in this game is to force those two Devils into foul trouble, and shoot an even higher percentage from three-point range than it did Thursday.

Prediction – Duke 84, Virginia 69


#4 Virginia Tech vs.


#12 Miami, 2:30 p.m.


Regular season results –VT 81-66 at home on Jan. 13, Mia 82-75 at home on Jan. 31

Team records – VT 23-7 (10-6) Miami 19-12 (4-12)

Projected starters –

Virginia Tech

G- Malcolm Delaney (20.9 ppg, 4.2 apg, 3.1 t.o per game)

G- Dorenzo Hudson (14.4 ppg, 3.5 rpg)

F- Terrell Bell (6.0 ppg, 6.2 rpg)

F- Jeff Allen (12.1 ppg, 7.3 rpg, 2.2 spg)

C- Victor Davila (5.3 ppg, 4.3 rpg)

Miami (First round stats)

G-Durand Scott (6 points, 4 assists)

G-Malcolm Grant (9 points, 5 assists)

G- James Dews (15 points, 4 rebounds)

F- DeQuan Jones (14 points, 4 rebounds)

F- Reggie Johnson (22 points, 4 rebounds)

Team statistical comparison –

VA TECH

STAT

MIAMI

73.0

Points per game

72.1

72.5%

Free throw percentage

66.8%

42.6%

Field goal percentage

46.2%

13.8

Points off three-pointers

22.5

Overview –

There may never be as dominating of a victory by the last-place team in a conference tournament ever again like Miami’s 83-62 beatdown of Wake on Thursday. The Hurricanes exploited the Deacons’ weak outside shooting by playing a 2-3 zone much of the game.

Virginia Tech is in the same boat as Wake. The Hokies are one of the weakest three-point shooting teams in the country. In the first matchup between Tech and Miami, the Hokies torched the Hurricanes’ zone, shooting over 60 percent from the field in the first half.

If Seth Greenberg’s club is making outside shots, they are very tough to beat. Malcolm Delaney, Dorenzo Hudson, Terrell Bell and Jeff Allen are all capable of knocking down outside shots, but none do so on a very consistent basis.

Hudson is expected to play despite a foot injury that held him out of the Hokies’ season finale at Georgia Tech.

The X-factor in this game will be Malcolm Delaney, and how effective his jump shot will be. Against a zone, he is less likely to reach the foul line as often as he does (more than seven times per game). This game will be very close, but the Hokies know that a one-and-done in Greensboro just might keep them out of the big dance.

Prediction – Virginia Tech 72, Miami 69


#2 Maryland vs.


#7 Georgia Tech, 7:00 p.m.


Regular season results – Maryland 76-74 at home on Feb. 20

Team records – Maryland 23-7 (13-3) Georgia Tech 20-11 (8-9)

Projected starters –

Maryland

G- Greives Vasquez (19.6 ppg, 6.3 apg, 4.6 rpg)

G- Eric Hayes (11.0 ppg, 45.2% 3pt.)

F- Landon Milbourne (12.4 ppg, 4.9 rpg)

F- Sean Mosley (10.8 ppg, 5.3 rpg)

C- Jordan Williams (9.3 ppg, 8.3 rpg)

Georgia Tech (ACC Tourney stats)

G- Iman Shumpert (9 points, 4 rebounds, 4 assists)

G- De’Andre Bell (8 points, 5 rebounds)

G- Glen Rice, Jr. (8 points, 2-4 3pt.)

F- Derrick Favors (18 points, 9 rebounds)

F- Gani Lawal (12 points, 4 rebounds)

Team statistical comparison –

UMD

STAT

GA TECH

79.8

Points per game

74.7

72.1%

Free throw percentage

65.4%

11.8

Turnovers per game

16.2

71.0

Points allowed per game

71.7

Overview –

Maryland has one of the best teams nobody is talking about as we hit mid-March. Vasquez is the unquestionable leader and go-to guy for Gary Williams’ team, but the Terrapins are deceptively balanced. Eric Hayes is a dynamite outside shooter, and Jordan Williams has emerged as a viable threat in the low post.

Williams will have his hands full with Lawal and Favors, who carried the Jackets past North Carolina in round one. Milbourne and Mosley will have to match the physical play of Georgia Tech to allow Vasquez and Hayes to win the game for them.

The backcourt advantage leans heavily towards the Terrapins. Georgia Tech’s guards have been inconsistent all season. Glen Rice, Jr. is a 45-percent shooter from three-point range, and he will have to knock down shots to give Tech hope.

Favors was ultra-impressive against Carolina Thursday night, and there is no reason to think he won’t build on that as he makes his case as one of the country’s best players. If he comes through with a big game, Tech has a chance.

Prediction – Maryland 74, Georgia Tech 69


#3 Florida State vs.


#11 North Carolina State, 9:30 p.m.


Regular season results – NC St. 88-81 at FSU on Jan. 12

Team records – Florida State 22-8 (10-6) NC State 18-14 (6-11)

Projected starters –

Florida State

G- Michael Snaer (8.9 ppg, 1.3 apg, 2.4 t.o per game)

G- Deividas Dulkys (8.6 ppg, 40.1% 3pt)

G- Derwin Kitchen (8.3 ppg, 4.7 rpg)

F- Chris Singleton (10.4 ppg, 7.2 rpg)

C- Solomon Alabi (11.6 ppg, 6.1 rpg, 2.3 bpg)

NC State (ACC Tourney Stats)

G- Javier Gonzalez (2 points, 4 turnovers)

G- Julius Mays (4 points, 3 turnovers)

F- Dennis Horner (2 points, 4 rebounds)

F- C.J. Williams (8 points, 4-4 FT)

F- Tracy Smith (19 points, 8 rebounds)

Team statistical comparison –

FSU

STAT

NC STATE

69.0

Points per game

68.0

64.9%

Free throw percentage

68.7%

8.4

Steals per game

6.4

60.2

Points allowed per game

65.1

Overview –

In reality, the Wolfpack had no means winning their first-round game against Clemson. They defeated the Tigers 59-57 in a game where Clemson shot 10-of-18 from the foul line and 20-of-51 from the field. Many of the Tigers’ misses were open looks, as David Potter and Andre Young went a combined one-for-12 from the field.

Florida State doesn’t boast much better shooters than Clemson, which is a good sign for the ‘Pack. Sidney Lowe’s gang, which has a knack for winning games in the conference tournament year after year, relies heavily on big man Tracy Smith to lead the way. Smith was the only scorer in double figures for NC State Thursday night.

Florida State likes to play aggressive half-court man-to-man defense, and are one of the best in the country at doing so. The Wolfpack turned the ball over 19 times against Clemson, another anomalistic number considering the fact they won the game. As I’ve said before, State has the worst ball-handling club in the ACC, and it has to catch up to them at some point.

As you can see above, though, Florida State also struggles from the foul line. Freshman guard Michael Snaer was named to the conference’s all-rookie team this week despite an appalling 1:1.8 assist-to-turnover ratio.

Just as Miami was for Wake Forest, NC State is a tough matchup for the ‘Noles, who already lost to the Wolfpack at home in 2010. This could be one ugly game.

Prediction – Florida State 64, NC State 62

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