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ACC basketball rankings: Florida State remains on top, Syracuse rises again, Mike Brey is apoplectic and North Carolina wins a game

North Carolina won a conference game!

Syracuse v Notre Dame Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images

Ladies and gentlemen, girls and boys, we welcome you back to another edition of the proud, preeminent TNIAAM ACC basketball rankings.

It’s officially Monday, so you know what that means: a long work-week awaits and depression sets in the time has come once again to rank ACC basketball teams.

Yet again it was an interesting week of basketball in the ACC as Virginia Tech lost to Boston College, Virginia almost lost to Wake Forest, Mike Brey went apoplectic in his presser at Florida State, North Carolina actually won a game and TV Teddy just can’t stop looking at himself at the replay monitor.

Syracuse forward Elijah Hughes became the leading scorer in the ACC as Jordan Nwora put up 20 points in the last two games. Buddy Boeheim should be in consideration for the ACC Most Improved Player award and Jim Boehiem just might’ve emerged as a candidate for ACC Coach of the Year. He just might be in a three horse race with Leonard Hamilton and Mike Young for the award. But is there even a fourth NCAA Tournament team from this conference?

Anyway, let’s dive into the conference hierarchy. As always, these rankings are backed by an undisclosed methodology not known to anyone, including myself.

NCAA Basketball: Notre Dame at Florida State
Wyatt Wilkes dials long-distance. Gen Z’ers won’t get it
Melina Myers-USA TODAY Sports

1. Florida State (17-2, 7-1)

Last week: Win over Notre Dame

Florida State only played one game last week and won, so the Seminoles retain its... seminal position in the ACC.

The Tuck was rocking as the ‘Noles took down Notre Dame at home. Sophomore forward Wyatt Wilkes was out there shooting like he was Deividas Dulkys.

Balsa Koprivica was back in action too and when you think about how Leonard Hamilton has two 7-footers at his disposal (off the bench!) with he and Dominik Olejniczak you begin to understand just how unfair it is, especially when a guy like John Mooney is limited to only five rebounds. The Seminoles just out-athlete you at every other position.

Florida State will have to do a better closing out wins down the stretch, but Mike Brey thinks FSU can win the whole thing. Shoutout to Hamsterdam.

2. Louisville (17-3, 8-1)

Last week: Win over Georgia Tech, win over Clemson

Louisville actually sits atop the conference standings, but a head-to-head loss to Florida State keeps the Cardinals in the No. 2 spot. Darius Perry scored a season-high 19 points against Clemson.

It seems like Louisville has someone new step up every night. Don’t look now but Louisville has won six straight.

3. Duke (16-3, 6-2)

Last week: Win against Miami

Duke only played one game last week, an 89-59 drubbing of Miami at home. Matthew Hurt stepped up with 22 points, 6 rebounds and 3 blocks against The U, while Joey Baker knocked down three 3s.

Dicky V lost his mind on Cassius Stanley’s dunk after an out-of-bounds lob, causing an incontrollable babble of, “OH! OH! UP UP AND AWAY! YOU TALK ABOUT AN ATHLETE!? YOU TALK ABOUT A HIGH RISA!? HE’S THE ELEVATOR MAN!”

I just made you do the Dicky V voice on your head. Anyway, here’s the highlight.

Stanley is just different at the rim.

4. NC State (14-6, 5-4)

Last week: Win over Virginia, loss at Georgia Tech

I had a really hard time putting NC State in the No. 4 spot after losing to Georgia Tech, but the 14-6 record and No. 50 NET ranking keep it above the others, for now.

Ted Valentine shows Syracuse fans how many times he went to the monitor on Saturday
Photo by Rich Barnes/Getty Images

5. Syracuse (13-7, 6-3)

Last week: Win at Notre Dame, win over Pittsburgh

Syracuse has risen above the middle of the ACC pack as it took care of business against two middling ACC foes (and due to Virginia Tech’s loss to Boston College).

Jim Boeheim is back to being a genius head coach that does his best work with lesser talent. After the next Syracuse loss, however, the barbarians will be at the gate suggesting the game has passed him by and he can’t coach anymore.

The Orange are still outside of the NCAA Tournament bubble for now, but Syracuse fans are already gearing up for what they think could be a surprise Final Four run.

6. Virginia Tech (14-6, 5-4)

Last week: Win over North Carolina, loss to Boston College

It took double-overtime for Virginia Tech to take down North Carolina at home, but Tyrece Radford became a legend by hitting the game-winner in the second overtime period in front of a raucous Cassell Coliseum.

But later in the week Virginia Tech lost to Boston College.

You can’t lose to Boston College.


We interrupt these rankings to bring you ACC basketball trivia, brought to you in part by Leonard Hamilton’s fountain of youth and a “sold out” Cassell Coliseum.


Virginia Tech beat North Carolina in double OT. What is VT’s all-time record in double OT games?

This poll is closed

  • 22%
    (59 votes)
  • 24%
    (65 votes)
  • 6%
    (17 votes)
  • 5%
    (14 votes)
  • 40%
    (107 votes)
262 votes total Vote Now

The answer to the ACC basketball trivia question will be released from my twitter account at 12 p.m. ET. Follow me there @JamesSzuba.

You guys can’t cheat and find the answer at the bottom of the page now... you b*stards.

Now back to your regularly scheduled jokes & garbage.


7. Virginia (13-6, 5-4)

Last week: Loss to NC State, win at Wake Forest

Virginia lost to NC State. Then it almost lost to Wake Forest.

Virginia could very well become the first No. 1 seed to lose a No. 16 seed, win the title the following year, and miss the NCAA Tournament altogether the year after that.

Per CBS Sports, If Virginia and Texas Tech both fail to make the NCAA Tournament this year, it will just be the third time in the last 60 years that a pair of teams competing for the National Championship both failed to make the field the following year.

H/T: Matt Norlander.

8. Pittsburgh (13-7, 4-5)

Last week: Win over Boston College, loss at Syracuse

Pittsburgh actually made 3s against Boston College. Then it chucked up a bunch of bricks and lost at Syracuse.

Justin Champagnie is pretty good though.

9. Clemson (10-9, 4-5)

Last week: Win over Wake, loss at Louisville

A win over Duke keeps Clemson above Notre Dame. The Tigers beat Wake and lost to Louisville last week. Nothing to write home about here, but man, those purple jerseys sure are ugly.

NCAA Basketball: Notre Dame at Florida State
An apoplectic Mike Brey challenges John Gaffney to a squatting contest after the Notre Dame bench gets T’d
Melina Myers-USA TODAY Sports

10. Notre Dame (11-8, 2-6)

Last week: Loss to Syracuse, loss at Florida State

Joe Girard told TJ Gibbs to hold that ball at the end of the game last Wednesday, but he might as well have told him to hold that L because that’s all the Irish seem to be interested in doing lately.

Notre Dame had a chance to win at the buzzer at Florida State, but an errant array of shots on the last possession allowed the Seminoles to continue its win streak. Mike Brey thinks Notre Dame isn’t treated as a full member of the ACC, citing John Gaffney’s T on the Irish bench.

Not the best acting from Brey here, but funny nonetheless. It was probably worth the $20,000 fine.

11. Georgia Tech (9-11, 4-6)

Last week: Loss at Louisville, win over NC State

Georgia Tech is a different team with Jose Alvarado back. Still a pretty big hole to climb out of for the Yellow Jackets, however.

12. Miami (10-9, 2-7)

Last week: Loss at Duke, loss at UNC

Miami took a pair of beatings on Tobacco Road last week. At Duke is one thing, but becoming the first team in the new year to lose to UNC is another. Not even Chris Lykes would’ve made a difference in the outcome at Carolina.

By the way, are we sure Rodney Miller is 23 years old? That hairline suggests he’s at least 20 years older and should be playing in a YMCA men’s league.

NCAA Basketball: Miami-Florida at Duke
Rodney Miller, 43 years old, posts up against Vernon Carey
John McCreary-USA TODAY Sports

13. Boston College (10-10, 4-5)

Last week: Loss against Pitt, win against Virginia Tech

Boston College beat Virginia Tech. Even a blind squirrel finds a nut every now and again.

14. North Carolina (9-10, 2-6)

Last week: Loss at Virginia Tech, win over Miami

Prior to last Saturday, North Carolina had not won a game in the new year. Its lone ACC win came against Notre Dame in the season-opener.

But that changed when Brandon Robinson went off against Miami, in turn allowing Roy Williams to pass Dean Smith on the all-time wins list at 880.

Oh, and Cole Anthony sent out this tweet.

North Carolina fans all look forward to Anthony’s return and eventually winning the ACC Tournament in Greensboro and securing an automatic NCAA Tournament bid.

15. Wake Forest (9-10, 2-7)

Last week: Loss to Clemson, loss to Virginia

Wake Forest actually took Virginia to overtime at home. Trailing by three, Andrien White was fouled on a 3-point attempt in game’s final moments. He made three clutch free throws to send it into extra time.

That was the extent of Wake Forest’s clutch factor, as Danny Manning’s team failed to get a shot attempt off in the game’s final possession.

Back to the basement you go, Demon Deacs.