Turner Walston

Weekend Watch: June 28-30

Here's a quick whip-around the news in Carolina athletics.

The Los Angeles Clippers made Reggie Bullock the 25th pick in last night's NBA Draft.

New Clippers coach Doc Rivers said the team needs more shooting, and that's why they chose Bullock

The Kinston Free Press was there at the Woodmen Community Center when Bullock got the news.

Could Rasheed Wallace be an assistant coach in Detroit?

After spending some time in AAA Tacoma, Dustin Ackley is back with the Mariners - this time in the outfield.

Cody Stubbs signed with the Kansas City Royals, but before reporting to Idaho Falls, he spent some time in Cherokee.

Also signing this week was Hobbs Johnson, who will report to Montana for the Milwaukee Brewers.

If you didn't get enough baseball this spring, you can catch Skye Bolt, Carlos Rodon and Trea Turner all on the USA Baseball Collegiate National Team this summer. Tar Heel Trent Thornton also had a tryout with the team.




Weekend Watch: June 21-23

Well, it's the weekend. The NBA Finals are done, and that means you can focus on Omaha and the Diamond Heels.

Jeffrey Hobbs Johnson was outstanding for the Tar Heels last night, tossing 8.1 innings of five-hit, shutout baseball to lead Carolina past N.C. State and on to face UCLA. Here is Aaron Fitt's take from Baseball America, and Perfect Game's Kendall Rogers on Johnson. Former Diamond Heel Teddy Mitrosilis, now an editor at ESPN, lauds Johnson while giving the N.C. State perspective.

To advance to the CWS championship series, Carolina will now need to beat UCLA twice, beginning tonight at 8/7 central on ESPN. Should Carolina win tonight, the two teams will tangle again on Saturday at 8 p.m. Carolina has yet to announce a starting pitcher for tonight's game, but UCLA will go with Grant Watson. It will be the eighth straight game the Tar Heels will have faced a left-handed starter.

On the other side of the bracket, Oregon State and Mississippi State play at 3/2 central. Like the Tar Heels, Oregon State will need to win two straight to make it to Monday night.

Matt Harvey will fight you.

Dustin Ackley has raised his batting average to .400 in AAA Tacoma.

Sent down to AAA earlier this week, Adam Warren is back in New York.

Kyle Seager had four hits last night, but the Angels stunned the Mariners.

Weekend Watch: June 14-16

The Diamond Heels are on the ground in Omaha and ready to compete in their sixth College World Series in the last eight years. Before I take to the air myself, I wanted to share some links with you ahead of the weekend.

Here's what you should know: Carolina takes on North Carolina State at 3 p.m. ET on Sunday on ESPN2. Here's your tournament bracket. The Tar Heels' next game will come Tuesday, either at 3 p.m. or 8 p.m., depending on what happens Sunday. Of course, all games will be broadcast on the Tar Heel Sports Network as well. Listen live on GoHeels.com or Chapelboro.com.

The Tar Heels are 2-1 against the Wolfpack in 2013, after having split the meetings in Raleigh and with Carolina taking a 2-1 decision in 18 innings in the ACC Tournament. N.C. State will send sophomore left-hander Carlos Rodon to the bump while Carolina counters with junior southpaw Kent Emanuel. Those two have never matched up against one another.

If you're going to Omaha, don't miss this Fan Guide from our own Jenn DiMeo. Here's the official CWS fan guide as well. Also, download the official app.

Parks Jordan drew a walk that forced in the game-winning run on Tuesday. Bobby Hundley breaks it down.

Spencer Herlong has a nice photo essay on the last N.C. State and Carolina battle, the 18-inning thriller at DBAP.

Carolina's women's athletics program won the 2012-13 Capital One Cup.

Roy Williams Carolina Basketball Camp is in session, and that means the annual player-alumni camp games are taking place. Our Adam Lucas breaks down this week's game.

Danny Green exploded for 27 points in the Spurs' Game 3 NBA Finals win over the Heat. He opened his postgame press conference in style. With the series now knotted at two, game five is Sunday in San Antonio at 8 p.m. on ABC.

With two weeks to go, Reggie Bullock is making a late push in NBA Draft projections.






Weekend Watch: June 7-9

Baseball is set to begin play with NCAA Super Regionals this weekend against South Carolina. Game One is scheduled for 1 p.m. Friday, but Tropical Storm Andrea may have other plans. An announcement will be made by 11 a.m. about the game's scheduled first pitch. Game One will now begin no earlier than 3 p.m.

Adam Lucas has a great story about the last time the Tar Heels and Gamecocks met in Supers, in 2007. That was the final series in the old Bosh.

After Monday's unbelievable thriller, Bobby Hundley compiled a list of the Diamond Heels' best Regional wins.

The Miami Marlins drafted Colin Moran sixth overall in the first round of the Major League Baseball First Year Player Draft. Here's a take from Miami, which indicates Moran may be in single-A Greensboro later this season. The Draft continues today with rounds 3-10 and Saturday with rounds 11-40, streaming live on MLB.com. Kent Emanuel should come off the board today.

There are a handful of Tar Heels competing at the NCAA Track & Field championships.

Tar Heels in the Pros

Speaking of the MLB Draft, Jon Heyman has a story on how the Mets got Matt Harvey. Harvey's next start is set for tonight against Miami.

Here's a great viral ad starring Danny Green. Speaking of Danny, his Spurs took Game One of the NBA Finals in Miami.

Bobby Frasor shared this yesterday: Great Carolina basketball players as puppies?



Built for June

Over the past seven years, Mike Fox’s Tar Heels have been to the College World Series five times. This year’s team, off to the best start in school and ACC history, has designs on a sixth trip. It won’t be easy, but these Diamond Heels appear to have the pieces in place to make a run.

Seven years ago in Tuscaloosa, Chad Flack sent Carolina to the College World Series with one swing of the bat. The walk-off, two-run blast propelled the Tar Heels past Alabama and on to Omaha. A video clip of that home run is played at every home game; after all, it was the moment that Carolina baseball had arrived as a national power.

But Flack himself says the Omaha trips were coming one way or another. “I think that home run got us over the hump, but people don’t realize that was in game two,” he says. “We still had game three we could have won. We probably would have had the odds against us at Alabama, but we set ourselves up that year, and I think it was believing we could make it more than anything.”

Flack recalls that during his recruitment, Fox and then-assistant Chad Holbrook (now the head coach at South Carolina) preached that the pieces were being put into place to make Carolina a nationally recognized program. “They said, ‘We haven’t been there yet, but we’re this close. We’ve got the pieces. We have Daniel Bard. We have Andrew Miller. We really need position players like you, Josh Horton and Reid Fronk to come in, and we want them to be North Carolina guys to help take North Carolina to the next level.’”

Mike Fox’s first Omaha teams got huge contributions from homegrown players, like Flack (Forest City), Bard (Charlotte), Tim Federowicz (Apex) and Robert Woodard (Charlotte), and later Dustin Ackley (Walnut Cove), Alex White (Greenville), Kyle Seager (Kannapolis) and Adam Warren (New Bern). Carolina was playing in Omaha, year after year, and players around the country took notice.

“I think once Coach Fox got this program on TV and seeing that ‘NC,’ I think there’s something about it that’s special,” says Colin Bates, who came to Chapel Hill from Naperville, Illinois.  “They brought in so much talent just from North Carolina, but once they started adding guys like (Matt) Harvey and other players from around the country, it’s really taken off.”

The consistent success on the field has allowed Carolina to recruit nationally while maintaining the standards posted in the locker room. “The character, the commitment, the confidence and the competitiveness,” assistant coach and recruiting coordinator Scott Jackson says. “Those are the four things that are going to pretty much determine how well you do here.” Jackson says it started before his time in Chapel Hill, with players like Flack, Horton and Fronk. “Coach (Fox) talks about it all the time. Once we had it in our locker room in 2006, we had to do everything we could do as a coaching staff to never let that go away.”

“Coach doesn’t go out necessarily and get the number one, number two players in the country,” Greg Holt says, “because he likes to get guys who fit the Carolina way, who are strong in their faith, strong in their family and their academics, and who are going to put the work in, day after day, and try to be the best players that they can be.”

During Bates’s recruiting process, Tar Heel associate head coach Scott Forbes sat next to Bates’s father Brian to watch Colin pitch. “The first thing he asked my dad was, ‘What kind of grades does he make?’ It wasn’t ‘Is this a typical outing?’ or ‘How does he usually pitch?’ It was, ‘Is he going to be a student or a liability?’”

The remarkable thing about Carolina’s run of recent success is that Fox has been able to both maintain those standards of off-the-field character and academic performance while fielding the nation’s winningest program since 2006. On the diamond, it’s been the pitching that has set the tone. “Your team is only going to be as good as your pitchers, and that’s something that Coach Forbes and I talk about,” Jackson says. “If you can’t run eight to ten guys out there, with them all being very similar in ability, it’s going to be tough for you to sustain any type of postseason success.”

During the spring of 2009, Jackson’s first in Chapel Hill, he was in awe of the Tar Heel hurlers. For a scrimmage at the USA Baseball National Training Center in Cary, Alex White and Matt Harvey faced off, and later Bates and Brian Moran worked in relief. Jackson coached third base. “I don’t think I was able to give a sign,” he remembers. “It was combined 34 or 36 strikeouts, and that’s when it hit me, ‘This is how you get to Omaha,’ and I’m thinking what it’s like for another team to have to face that level of pitching.”

In recruiting, college baseball coaches sell college baseball itself to high school seniors who are eligible to be drafted by Major League teams. That 2009 team featured Harvey, who had been drafted in the third round in 2007 and White, who was picked in the 14th round in 2006. After three years at Carolina, both were first-round picks.

Jackson says that 2008 Carolina signees Tim Melville and Quinton Miller could have helped a young Tar Heel team in 2010. Harvey and Bates were the most experienced arms on that team, which was eliminated in the regional round of the NCAA Tournament. “We learned a lot from that season, and we said we wanted to have depth,” Forbes says. “You can’t be afraid of having unhappy kids on the bench. If you have that depth, other kids are being pushed.”

In 2011, senior Patrick Johnson won 13 games as the Friday night starter, and freshman Kent Emanuel was outstanding. They and sophomore closer Michael Morin set the tone on the mound and helped carry Carolina back to the College World Series.

Two years later, Emanuel is perhaps the most reliable Friday night starter in the country, and Carolina returned intact the rest of the weekend rotation with sophomore Benton Moss and junior Hobbs Johnson. Out of the bullpen, sophomores Trevor Kelley and Chris McCue set up nicely for freshman closer Trent Thornton.

At the plate, Brian Moran’s little brother Colin, once the final member of the 2010 recruiting class, has blossomed into an All-American. Freshman phenom Skye Bolt was hitting .392 before a broken foot interrupted his season, and junior college transfer Cody Stubbs has become a more disciplined hitter as well.

The program’s ability to recruit nationally has brought cornerstone players to Chapel Hill, but all that could go for naught if not for the chemistry in the locker room. The coaching staff has relied on the players to lead each other. “We’ve had guys manage themselves and check their attitude at the door,” Fox says. “And if not, we’ve had some upperclassmen who have been able to confront other guys, and sometimes they can be more honest with each other and just tell them, right now you’re not good enough to play, or that’s not your role. You’ve got to accept it.”

Senior Chris Munnelly began his career as a weekend starter and has since pitched in just about every role. He can talk to a struggling pitcher because he’s been in their shoes. Chaz Frank wasn’t on the team trip to California two years ago. When another player left the team, Frank was flown in. “He walked into Fullerton with his street clothes on,” Jackson says. “He hasn’t come out of the lineup since.”

Even a player like Tom Zengel, a junior who saw heavy action as a freshman and has seen just an occasional pinch-hit opportunity in 2013, can lead by example. “He gets it,” Fox says. “He’s a good student, and he wants to graduate from the University of North Carolina. He sees the big picture. A lot of kids get locked into today, and ‘Why am I not playing?’ and ‘I want an at-bat,’ but it’s just not like that. He really is happy when we win. That kid’s just as important to our team as anybody else.”

The 2013 Tar Heels began the season as the consensus top team in the country and maintained that through the first two-thirds of the year. The goal is to finish June in that spot. “From what I can tell, this year’s team is one of, if not the most talented team UNC has had,” Flack says. “That’s including the years that I played.”

These Diamond Heels appear to have the pitching, the talent and the chemistry to make another run toward a championship. “It’s been the goal since day one,” Colin Moran says. “We’re still working on it.”

Weekend Watch: May 31 - June 2

Welcome to the weekend.

On Sunday, Carolina women's lacrosse came home with the first NCAA championship in program history. It took a thrilling sudden-death overtime match, but the payoff was well worth it. Don't miss the terrific work done by UNC New Media on this series of videos.

How was your week, Carolina baseball? The Tar Heels took the ACC Tournament title last Sunday in thrilling fashion. After an eight-inning, 10-0 defeat of Miami on Thursday, the Tar Heels beat Clemson 12-7 in 14 innings, then N.C. State 2-1 in the longest game in ACC championship history, 18 innings. Finally, the Heels got a terrific surprise start from freshman pitcher Taylore Cherry and Trevor Kelley earned the save in a 4-1 win over Virginia Tech Sunday. Shameless plug: Chris McCue's changeup got the Tar Heels out of a bases-loaded jam against N.C. State in the 13th. I wrote about it for GoHeels.com. Adam Lucas wrote about the weekend of fantastic Tar Heel pitching.

The NCAA Baseball Tournament begins today. The top-seeded Tar Heels host Canisius, Florida Atlantic and Towson at the Chapel Hill Regional.

Friday: Florida Atlantic takes on Towson at 1 p.m., with the Tar Heels and Canisius following at 6 p.m. (ESPN3)

Saturday: 1 p.m. Losers of Friday games; 6 p.m. Winners of Friday games

Sunday: 1 p.m. Winner of Saturday 1 p.m. vs. Loser of Saturday 6 p.m.; 6 p.m. Winner of Sunday 1 p.m. vs. Winner of Saturday 6 p.m.

Monday 6 p.m. (if necessary): same teams as Sunday 6 p.m.

Here's a printable tournament bracket.

For the Canisius perspective, read a feature on pitcher Garrett Cortright from The Buffalo News.

Towson's tournament run is incredible when you consider that in March it was announced that the program would be dropped.

Florida Atlantic is hot, having won 11 games in a row.

SI.com's Jeff Bradley says the Tar Heels are the ACC's best hope.

Tar Heels in the Pros

Mike Axisa has a terrific feature on Matt Harvey's slider (check out the cool GIF).

Tyler Hansbrough received a technical foul for being pushed to the ground by Chris Andersen.

Weekend Watch: May 24-26

It's Memorial Day Weekend, but before you bust out the grill or head to the pool, make sure you're all caught up on what's happening in Tar Heel athletics.

Women's Lacrosse is in the Final Four in Philadelphia. They'll face off with Northwestern Friday at 5 p.m. The winner will play the Syracuse/Maryland winner Sunday at 8 for a national championship. Watch on ESPN3.

NCAA.com has a nice story on Kara Cannizzaro, whose brother Sean is a sophomore on the University of Denver men's lacrosse team.

Carolina's Paige Hanson was the recipient of the Elite 89 award, given to the student-athlete with the highest cumulative GPA among the teams at the Final Four.

Tar Heel Zoe Skinner won the Yeardley Reynolds Love Unsung Hero Award for her volunteer work both in Chapel Hill and in Vietnam.

Carolina Track & Field student-athletes continue competition in the NCAA East Preliminary this weekend in Greensboro. Catch live results of today's events here.

After run-ruling Miami 10-0 in eight innings Thursday, Baseball continues ACC Tournament play Friday and Saturday at Durham Bulls Athletic Park. The Tar Heels play Clemson Friday at 7 (tickets) and N.C. State Saturday at 7. Good seats for the Clemson game are still available. As I type this, lawn seating is still available for Saturday evening. Sunday's championship game is at 1 p.m. If you can't make it out this weekend, watch on Fox Sports South locally or ESPN3.

Carolina is 1-0 in Division A after knocking off Miami. If N.C. State beats the Hurricanes today at 11, Saturday night's game will determine who advances to Sunday, regardless of what happens between the Tigers and Tar Heels tonight. That's because a two-team tiebreaker goes to the head-to-head winner. If the Wolfpack lose today, they would need Clemson to beat Miami Saturday (N.C. State beat Clemson on Wednesday). A three-way tiebreak would go to the Tar Heels, who have the best record percentage-wise in conference play.

Over in Division B, Virginia Tech is 2-0 but still needs to beat Georgia Tech today at 3 to punch its ticket to the championship. Virginia is pulling for the Yellow Jackets, because if Georgia Tech wins and the the Cavaliers get past Florida State Saturday, they'd advance to Sunday based on the tiebreak rules.

Tar Heels in the Pros

Could Matt Harvey start the All-Star game at Citi Field?

Speaking of Harvey, did you see the reference to him on this week's Law & Order: SVU?

Former Harvey rotation mate Adam Warren continues to make a good impression in that other New York stadium.

ACC Baseball Tournament Preview

DURHAM -- This week's ACC Baseball Tournament is shaping up to be one of the best in recent memory. All eight teams appear to have punched their tickets to the NCAA Tournament, so the next five days promise to deliver some great action on the diamond. Check out Boydsworld.com's current RPI standings, and you'll see all eight ACC tournament qualifiers in the top 22 nationally. The team that emerges victorious on Sunday afternoon will have run through the ACC Baseball gauntlet.

As the #1 seed, Carolina got to choose their day off. With the Florida State game on Monday, Mike Fox and his staff elected to begin play on Thursday. That sets up their weekend rotation nicely. Kent Emanuel will throw on Thursday, Benton Moss on Friday and Hobbs Johnson on Sunday, just as they did last week for the series against Virginia. Let's take a look at the Tar Heels' matchups this week.

Thursday 3 p.m.

#1 North Carolina vs. #8 Miami

North Carolina sends the 2013 ACC Pitcher of the Year, junior left-hander Kent Emanuel (9-3, 2.28) to the bump, while Miami likely counters with sophomore LHP Andrew Suarez. Emanuel took the loss in a 4-1 Miami victory back on March 15th (Carolina's first loss of the year). He gave up just two hits through four before the Hurricanes struck for three runs in the 5th. Suarez was brilliant against the Tar Heels in the rubber match on Sunday. He allowed a single hit through 6.2 while punching out seven. Hurricane reliever A.J. Salcines was saddled with the loss as he gave up a three-run Skye Bolt home run in the 8th.

Carolina vs. Miami in 2013: 2-1, .300 batting average, .204 batting average against.

Friday 7 p.m.

#1 North Carolina vs. #5 Clemson

Carolina will stick to the script and go with sophomore RHP Benton Moss (8-1, 3.21). Moss got off to a brilliant start in 2 2/3 innings against the Tigers back on March 31, striking out six of the first seven batters he saw. Rain forced the game to be delayed until the next day, when Trent Thornton went the rest of the way for Carolina.

Clemson has not announced a starter, but look at a pair of freshmen, Matthew Crownover (7-2, 2.05), a lefty who has worked his way into the weekend rotation, or right-hander Clate Schmidt (3-3, 4.89). Schmidt started opposite Moss back on March 31 and was not sharp, giving up five hits and two runs in two innings. Crownover started the series finale for the Tigers, working 4 2/3 and giving up three runs on seven hits.

Carolina vs. Clemson in 2013: 2-1, .360 batting average, .229 batting average against.

Saturday 7 p.m.

#1 North Carolina vs. #4 N.C. State

Hobbs Johnson (4-0, 2.18) finally gets his shot at the Wolfpack while Elliott Avent's bunch goes with Carlos Rodon (8-2, 3.86). Johnson's game three start was rained out in Raleigh, while Rodon earned the win in game two for the Wolfpack. He was sharp against the Tar Heels, scattering seven hits across 6 2/3 innings, and the two runs charged to Rodon were due to a home run surrendered by reliever Grant Sasser. But Rodon has been hot and cold in 2013. Last weekend against Duke, he threw 128 pitches and struck out 15(!) in nine complete, but did allow six runs (four earned) in a 10-inning Wolfpack win.

Hobbs Johnson got off to a slow start in 2013, but appears to have gotten back on track. In his start after missing the N.C. State game, he threw five innings of two-hit baseball against the Citadel. He got off to a strong start last weekend against Virginia, allowing just two hits (three runs) in 7 1/3 innings.

Carolina vs. N.C. State in 2013: 1-1, .338 batting average, .290 batting average against.


This is a hard tournament to call, as all eight teams are playing good baseball. Carolina has beaten all three of these teams but has lost to all three of these teams in 2013. Emanuel has taken losses in his last two starts, so he'll look to rebound and make a good impression with fewer than two weeks until the MLB First-Year Player Draft. Moss was brilliant against the Tigers and will want to make up for lost time. Johnson was amped for that Monday start at N.C. State, and when it didn't happen, he threw fire two days later against the Citadel. Carolina took two tough weekend series losses over the last two weeks, but bounced back to knock off Florida State in a non-conference classic on Monday. Skye Bolt has returned to the Carolina lineup and with a 2-4 night against the Seminoles, appears to be getting his groove back. The Tar Heels could have used the switch-hitting Bolt against Rodon in Raleigh, but he'll get his shot on Saturday.

It's going to be a great tournament in Durham, even if it's not all that important. A team that is desperate to jump up a line in the NCAA Tournament, say from on the bubble to an at-large bid, or to grab a regional spot, could go all out this weekend. But you can easily burn out your pitching ahead of the NCAA Tournament, so the coaching staffs are going to be careful. Should the Tar Heels make Sunday's championship game, I wouldn't fret about throwing Chris Munnelly or Reilly Hovis, as they are almost definitely as good or better than any other team's fourth starter.

Again, it's going to be fun, so enjoy the games at DBAP this weekend.

Weekend Watch: May 17-19

Carolina spring sports teams continue their championship pursuits this weekend.

Men's Golf is tied for fourth in the Tempe Regional round of the NCAA Tournament. Play continues through Saturday.

Women's Tennis takes on Nebraska tonight at 8 in the third round of the NCAA Tournament in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois. The winner takes on UCLA/Michigan winner Sunday at 5, with the national semifinals and finals following Monday and Tuesday.

Softball beat Wisconsin in extras Thursday night in their NCAA Regional. The Tar Heels play host Oregon at 2 today.

Baseball dropped the first game of a series with Virginia on Thursday. They'll need to win one of two to capture the Coastal Division crown and the #1 seed for next week's ACC Tournament. The Tar Heels and Cavaliers play at 7 Friday and 2 Saturday. Both games are sold out, but you can watch on ESPN3.

Carolina women's lacrosse plays Virginia Saturday at 1 with a trip to next weekend's Final Four on the line. Catch the game at Fetzer Field or watch on GoHeelsTV.

Sunday at 1, it's Carolina men's lacrosse against Denver in Indianapolis on ESPNU. The winner advances to the Final Four. The Pioneers eliminated the Tar Heels last season.

NBA Playoffs

Danny Green's Spurs eliminated Harrison Barnes and the Warriors last night. It'll be San Antonio and Memphis (and Ed Davis) in the Western Conference Finals. That series begins Sunday at 3:30 on ABC.

Raymond Felton and the Knicks are trying to hang in the series with Tyler Hansbrough and the Pacers. Game Six is Saturday at 8 on ESPN.

Major League Baseball

Red-hot Matt Harvey and the New York Mets take on the Chicago Cubs Friday at 2:20 p.m. on WGN America.



ACC Baseball: One Week to Go

The final weekend of the regular season is a huge one in ACC baseball. The division title races are not yet decided, and neither is the seeding for the ACC Tournament next week at DBAP. Let's take a look at the series rounding out conference play on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

North Carolina (20-5) vs. Virginia (20-7)

Carolina needs to win one more game to sew up the Coastal Division title and the top seed at the ACC Tournament. That's what you need to know heading into this huge weekend matchup with Virginia. The Tar Heels would still be ahead of the Cavaliers on conference win percentage even if Virginia is able to take two of three in Chapel Hill this weekend.

Consequently, Virginia needs a sweep to finish at 23-7 and ahead of the Tar Heels. Because the winners of the two ACC divisions will be the #1 and #2 seeds at the Tournament, one of Carolina and Virginia will be #1, and the other #3.

Florida State (18-9) vs. Clemson (17-10)

A series win for the Seminoles gets them the Atlantic Division title. However, if Clemson gets the sweep, it's the Tigers who'll get the nod and the second seed. Things get interesting, here, however, if Clemson only wins two. With a sweep at Duke, N.C. State would leap up and grab the Atlantic title IF Clemson wins two from FSU.

N.C. State (16-10) at Duke (9-18)

As noted above, the Wolfpack will have a shot at the Atlantic Division title, but they need to sweep AND have Clemson to go 2-1 at Florida State. In that case, State would finish at 19-10 and Florida State at 19-11. This could shuffle Florida State all the way down to the #5 seed. Duke could get in with a sweep AND a Georgia Tech sweep of Miami, as the Blue Devils took two of three from the Hurricanes this season.

Georgia Tech (14-13) at Miami (12-15)

The Yellow Jackets would currently be the sixth seed. IF Tech goes 3-0 in Coral Gables AND N.C. State is swept at Duke, the Jackets would have the 5. Miami needs at least one win to feel safe at 8. A series win by the Hurricanes bumps Miami to 6 or 7, depending on . . .

Virginia Tech (13-14) vs. Wake Forest (9-18)

The Hokies are in at 7 and could go as high as 6 with a sweep. Wake Forest needs a sweep AND a Georgia Tech sweep of Miami to sneak in.

Maryland (9-18) vs. Boston College (3-23)

These teams are out of luck, particularly Maryland. Even if they somehow got to 12 wins, they'd lose a tiebreaker to Miami. Even if Duke sweeps N.C. State and it's a three-team tie, Miami gets the nod by virtue of their one win over Carolina. We could even have a four-way tie if Wake Forest sweeps Virginia Tech, Maryland and Duke sweep and Miami is swept. In that case, Wake Forest wins the tiebreak with the best win percentage against tied teams.

So, here's how they stack up now, and based on my calculations, here's the highest and lowest they can go:

Current SeedTeamHighestLowest
#1 North Carolina #1 #3
#2  Florida State  #2  #4
#3 Virginia  #1  #3
#4 Clemson  #2  #5
#5 N.C. State  #2  #6
#6 Georgia Tech  #5  #7
#7 Virginia Tech  #7  #8
#8 Miami  #6  OUT
#9 Wake Forest  #8  OUT
#10 Maryland  OUT  OUT
#11 Duke  #8  OUT
#12 Boston College  OUT  OUT


Now, what do I think is going to happen, you ask? I think Carolina is very likely to get at least one win against Virginia and the top seed. Florida State wins their series over Clemson 2-1, so they take the #2. The third seed goes to Virginia. N.C. State wins two out of three over Duke, but it's not enough if Clemson takes one from FSU. So, you have #4 Clemson and #5 N.C. State. Miami wins two of three at home against mercurial Georgia Tech, and Virginia Tech takes two of three from Wake Forest. That has #6 Georgia Tech, #7 Virginia Tech, and #8 Miami.

What would that mean for Carolina? Round-robin play against #4 Clemson, #5 N.C. State and #8 Miami. Three teams that each took a win from the Tar Heels in 2013. What the heck, let's go ahead and slot when those games would be played? The ACC Tournament runs Wednesday through Sunday. The #1 seed gets to pick their day off, and I imagine Mike Fox would take Thursday, as the week would then set up normally, like one midweek game and a weekend series (counting Sunday). Also, we know the ACC wants fans in seats and TV eyes for prime time matchups. So here we go:


11 a.m. #3 Virginia vs. #6 Georgia Tech

3 p.m.  #2 Florida State vs. #7 Virginia Tech

7 p.m. #1 North Carolina vs. #8 Miami


11 a.m. #2 Florida State vs. #6 Georgia Tech

3 p.m. #3 Virginia vs. #7 Virginia Tech

7 p.m. #4 Clemson vs. #5 N.C. State


11 a.m. #6 Georgia Tech vs. #7 Virginia Tech

3 p.m. #5 N.C. State vs. #8 Miami

7 p.m. #1 North Carolina vs. #4 Clemson


11 a.m. #2 Florida State vs. #3 Virginia

3 p.m.  #4 Clemson vs. #8 Miami

7 p.m. #1 North Carolina vs. #5 N.C. State


1 p.m. Championship game

Just for fun, of course.