Monday, January 28, 2008

ACC Basketball Standings

In case you weren't aware #3 Duke defeated Maryland at Comcast Center last night 93-84. Demarcus Nelson lead Duke in scoring (27), rebounding (7), and assists (4). To add on he also had 4 steals, many of them completely changed the momentum of the game. This game played out almost as expected as the Terps got 46 points and 20 boards form Gist and Osby but in the end Duke's perimeter players were too good. To go along with Nelson's 27 Gerald Henderson Jr. went off for 23 and freshman point guard Nolan Smith added 14 points to go along with 6 boards.....

This week we are focusing on the ACC Standings. The ACC season has gotten started and already there has been upsets and a buzzer beater.

Wayne Ellington goes for 36 and the game winning three at Little John against Clemson.

Along with Duke/Maryland game I got a chance to watch another ACC game last night (to quote a friend 'ACC Sunday night hoops is one of the greatest ideas ever.') and it lived up to expectations in terms of entertainment. Behind senior point guard Matt Causey Georgia Tech overcame a 10 point half time deficit to beat Virginia on the road last night in overtime. Causey scored 12 in overtime along and hit a three pointer from what seemed like several feet past the nba three. I got a chance to see the game and came away very impressed with both point guards from Tech. Georgia Tech's starting point guard Maurice Miller had a nice showing as well scoring 11 points in a variety of ways before leaving the game for good with an ankle injury. Virginia's Calvin Baker scored 16 for the Cavs but BMOC (big man on campus) freshman Gani Lawal was huge inside for Tech. He scored 15 tough points and grabbed 6 boards as well. He's a beast right now and next year he'll be even better.

With this said, there is plenty of season left. Most teams in the conference have only played 5 conference games and as result have about 11 games left. I expect the standings will be shaken up more than a few times as some teams go on win streaks and some teams bottom out. As of 1/28/08, this is what the standings look like.

ACC Standings (in conference, overall):

1. Duke: 5-0, 17-1
2. North Carolina: 4-1, 19-1
3. Boston College: 3-2, 12-6
4. Clemson: 3-3, 15-5
5. Virginia Tech: 3-3, 12-8
6. Georgia Tech: 3-3, 10-9
7. Miami: 2-3, 15-4
8. North Carolina State: 2-3, 13-6
9. Wake Forest: 2-3, 12-6
10. Maryland: 2-3, 12-8
11. Florida State: 2-4, 13-8
12. Virginia: 1-4, 11-7

(Name, Class, School, Average)

1. Tyler Hansbrough, Jr, UNC - 22.0 ppg (points per game)
2. Tyrese Rice, Jr, BC - 20.0 ppg
3. Sean Singletary, Sr, UVA - 18.1 ppg
4. Wayne Ellington, So, UNC - 16.8 ppg
5. Greivis Vasquez, So, Maryland - 16.5 ppg

(Name, Class, School, Average)

1. Tyler Hansbrough, Jr, UNC - 10.1 rpg
2. James Johnson, Fr, Wake Forest - 8.3 rpg
3. Trevor Booker, So, Clemson - 8.2 rpg
4. Jeff Allen, Fr, Virginia Tech - 8.1 rpg
5. J.J. Hickson, Fr, NC State - 8.0 rpg

(Name, Class, School, Average)

1. Tyrelle Blair, Jr, BC - 4.3 bpg
2. James Gist, Sr, Maryland - 2.5 bpg
3. Trevor Booker, So, Clemson - 2.1 bpg
4. Bambale Osby, Sr, Maryland - 2.1 bpg
5. J.J. Hickson, Fr, NC State - 1.7 bpg

(Name, Class, School, Average)

1. Sean Singletary, Sr, UVA - 6.7 apg
2. Greivis Vasquez, So, Maryland - 6.3 apg
3. Tywon Lawson, So, UNC - 5.8 apg
4. Eric Hayes, So, Maryland - 5.4 apg
5. Tyrese Rice, Jr, BC - 5.1 apg

(Name, Class, School, Average)

1. Tony Douglas, Jr, FSU - 2.7 spg
2. Jeff Teague, Fr, Wake Forest - 2.4 spg
3. James Mays, Sr, Clemson - 2.3 spg
4. Jeff Allen, Fr, Virginia Tech - 2.1 spg
5. Cliff Hammonds, Sr, Clemson - 2.1 spg

.......ACC Ballers Dunk of the Week
(keep in mind that these dunks didn't necessarily take place this week).

L.D. Williams gettin' big on Georgia Tech.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

ACC game of the week (1/20- 1/27) - #3 Duke vs. Maryland (1/27)

Pretty wild week in the ACC as UNC goes down to the once strugglin' Terps of College Park. I was on the way back from a women's college basketball game and didn't get a chance to see Murlin's big win until Sunday morning when I caught a replay. Best part about Maryland is that they have two battle tested guards in Vasquez and Hayes. I especially like the fact that Greivis Vasquez impacts the game in several different ways. He is the only player in the conference that leads his team in scoring (16.6 ppg) and assists (6.3 apg) while also being the team's third leading rebounder (5.4rpg)....

Now that that's out of the way I'd like to congratulate Deron Washington of Virginia Tech for being recognized as the Best Dunker in the conference.

Ya know, it's hard to argue with this.

Now back to the matter at hand. Duke versus Murlin. Crazy Terps fans will come up with ways to make fun of Paulus and Scheyer. Maryland will go on a really scoring drought. Duke will get a few calls they don't deserve. Osby and/or Gist will be in foul trouble. With about one or two minutes one of the teams will be up a 2 or 3 and the other team will try and execute a designed play or two to win the game. That's how it's always been and after Murlin's win at UNC there is no reason to think they won't play Duke tough at home.


Duke has a lot of guards. John Scheyer is giving Coach K 11.4 ppg and 40% three point shooting off the bench. Scheyer would start for every other team in the conference with the exception of UNC (he might start there as well). The two reasons why he doesn't start gives you an idea of just how talented this Blue Devil team is. Sophomore Gerald Henderson Jr. and senior DeMarcus Nelson have combined to average 27.4 points and 12.8 rebounds per. Nelson is shooting an ridiculous 51.6% from the field. Unheard of for a guard. This quality depth at guard just might be what does Maryland in. While Maryland sophomores Greivis Vasques and Eric Hayes have helped their 7 freshman teammates along as best they can, they aren't going to be able to prepare their your teammates for the pressure Duke will apply. The best the Terps can hope for is that Hayes and Vasquez stay out of foul trouble so that Gary doesn't have to go with one of two backup freshman guards he has on the roster.

Yes, for Duke the point guard situation is a bit iffy as the much maligned Greg Paulus is still manning the position. Unfortunately for the Terps Coach K has been grooming McDonald's All-American freshman Nolan Smith to play that spot. Smith has been called upon to D up on the opponents best handler and to this point has done a pretty good job. With this said, Hayes can help negate a bit of the backcourt advantage that Duke possesses if he can put enough defensive pressure on Paulus. When Paulus struggles to bring the ball up court Duke's offense isn't nearly as crisp. If this happens it'll be interesting to see how fast Duke turns to Smith. All things considered Duke still has the advantage here.


Advantage Maryland. All you need to know is that Gary Williams has seven frontcourt players at his disposal and the blue devils have about 2 legit post players. Granted, the best front court player on either team is freshman Kyle Singler and he plays for Duke, but i doubt he will be enough to against Maryland's starting front line of Landon Milbourne, Bambale Osby, and big time James Gist. Gist, Osby, and Milbourne have all played well at different times in the season but not until Saturday in Chapel Hill did they each play well in the same game. Against UNC the Terps' frontcourt trio combined for 48 points, 19 rebounds (13 of those were Gist's), and 3 blocked shots. I'm thinking that the momentum from Saturday will carry over to this coming Sunday's big game.

While Maryland has a favorable matchup down low, Duke is still Duke. They have two formidable low post players in Brian Zoubek and Lance Thomas. The only issue for them is depth. If either of these players gets into foul trouble or simply too fatigued to go Duke will have very little to turn to. Singler can cover most power forwards in a pinch but Gist and Osby are way too physically mature for him.

As this novel post might indicate this game should be fantastic. There will be emotional outburts from fans, players, and coaches at each whistle. The Comcast Center should be loud and filled with an absurd amount of Terps fans (You get an idea of how many people are there when the camera guy pans over to the student section). I know some times I have to convince others that certain games will be good but Duke/Maryland speaks for itself. I'm going with Maryland to win by 3 or 4 due to bad free throw shooting by Duke down the stretch. Enjoy it.

....and new to ACC Ballers is the ACC Dunk of the Week:

This week we have Virginia freshman Mike Scott throwing one down against Virginia Tech.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Who is the best dunker in the ACC?

Before I get to the crux of this post I wanted to acknowledge that the people have spoken and they believe Sean Singletary will be the 2007-2008 ACC Men's basketball player of the year. I believe that a lot of Virginia fans check out this blog. Regardless, I hope they're right. Singletary is definitely my favorite ACC player to watch and if you haven't figured out already I'm a Cavalier fan, through and through.

Each week I try to write something that will offer some foresight as to how the league championship will be decided. Might give you stats, might offer opinions on certain players, and maybe I'll give you my analysis on certain games. Not this week. This week we focus on something we've neglected for far too long. The question has subconsciously been on my mind all week as I've scoured youtube for dunks....While I haven't found anyone who can do this like UCLA's Russell Westbrook,

I found some plays that will definitely make you turn your head. My job: To show you as many dunks as I can this week. Your job: Watch as many dunks as you can and vote who you think is the best ACC dunker.

1. Courtney Fells, Jr, NC State - This might be my favorite one. One of those "I gotta get to the rim quickly and you're in my way" dunks.

2. Deron Washington, Sr, Virginia Tech - Not a game, not a game, not a game. We talkin' about practice.

3. Danny Green, Jr, UNC

4. Gerald Henderson, So, Duke

5. Courtney Fells, Jr, NC State

6. James Gist, Sr, Maryland

7. Deron Washington, Sr, Virginia Tech - Again.

8. Isaiah Swann, Sr, FSU

9. Wayne Ellington, So, UNC

10. Courtney Fells, Jr, NC State

11. Demarcus Nelson, Sr, Duke

12. James Gist, Sr, Maryland

13. Deron Washington, Sr, Virginia Tech (there's plenty of his dunks on youtube).

14. James Mays, Sr, Clemson

15. Gerald Henderson, So, Duke - If you're not in the mood for an over exaggerated Duke moment I suggest you turn the volume down for this. The Duke announcers are at 'their best.'

16. Dwayne Collins, So, Miami

17. Wayne Ellington, So, UNC - It didn't count but this was pretty sick.

18. Tyler Hansbrough, Jr, UNC - The guy he dunked on is 7'8 Kenny George of North Carolina Asheville.

In case you were wondering about what's actually going on in the league aside from dunks there are a host of games for you to check out. Virginia goes to #7 Duke tonight, Maryland goes to #1 UNC on Saturday, and #19 Clemson travels to #7 Duke on Saturday as well. This is an important week for teams like Georgia Tech, Florida State, and Maryland as each has gotten of to a rocky start and need a strong conference season to even be considered for the NCAA tournament.....Ok. Now that we've gotten that out of the we can get back to our first topic. Remember that these are only the first set of dunks for the week. I'll continue to put up more and more dunks all week. Don't forget to vote!

Sunday, January 6, 2008

2007-2008 ACC Statistical Leaders

Just in case you need a reason to get pumped up about the true beginning of the ACC season.....Watch Mr. Gist crank that highlight reel dunk on UCLA's Alfred Aboya.

This week we'll be looking at the numbers. While the only numbers that really matter in college basketball are wins and losses, individual statistics give you an idea of who and what teams rely upon to succeed. Keep in mind that these numbers have come largely against out of conference competition as many teams have yet to begin their ACC seasons.

(Name, Class, School, Average)

1. Tyler Hansbrough, Jr, UNC - 22.4 ppg (points per game)
2. Tyrese Rice, Jr, BC - 19.8 ppg
3. Sean Singletary, Sr, UVA - 17.8 ppg
4. Greivis Vasquez, So, Maryland - 16.9 ppg
5. J.J. Hickson, Fr, NC State - 16.8 ppg

(Name, Class, School, Average)

1. Tyler Hansbrough, Jr, UNC - 9.6 rpg
2. Trevor Booker, So, Clemson - 9.2 rpg
3. James Johnson, Fr, Wake Forest - 8.7 rpg
4. Jeff Allen, Fr, Virginia Techh - 8.0 rpg
5. Anthony King, Sr, Miami - 7.9 rpg

(Name, Class, School, Average)

1. Tyrelle Blair, Jr, BC - 4.2 bpg (wow)
2. James Gist, Sr, Maryland - 2.4 bpg
3. Bambale Osby, Sr, Maryland - 2.2 bpg
4. Trevor Booker, So, Clemson - 2.2 bpg
5. J.J. Hickson, Fr, NC State - 1.8 bpg

(Name, Class, School, Average)

1. Sean Singletary, Sr, UVA - 6.8 apg
2. Greivis Vasquez, So, Maryland - 6.1 apg
3. Tywon Lawson, So, UNC - 5.5 apg
4. Eric Hayes, So, Maryland - 5.4 apg
5. Tyrese Rice, Jr, BC - 5.2 apg

(Name, Class, School, Average)

1. Tony Douglas, Jr, FSU - 2.6 spg
2. Jeff Teague, Fr, Wake Forest - 2.5 spg
3. James Mays, Sr, Clemson - 2.4 spg
4. Cliff Hammonds, Sr, Clemson - 2.2 spg
5. Tywon Lawson, Fr, UNC - 2.1 spg

Team Field Goal %

1. North Carolina - 50.3%
2. Duke - 49.8%
3. Georgia Tech - 47.4%
4. Florida State - 47.3%
5. Clemson - 47.1%

Team Three Point Shooting %

1. Miami - 43.2%
2. Duke - 42.3%
3. Clemson - 40.7%
4. Virginia - 40.5%
5. North Carolina - 37.7%

Team Free Throw Shooting %

1. Florida State - 78.5%
2. North Carolina - 73.7%
3. Georgia Tech - 71.4%
4. Maryland - 70.8%
5. Virginia - 70.8% (played one less game and attempted less free throws than Maryland)

Just a quick glance at these statistics explains why teams like North Carolina, Miami, Clemson, and Florida State have gotten off to such great starts. This season, much like almost every other season, the team statistics are a better indication of how good a team is than anything else. For example, Maryland is off to below par 9-6 start yet are well represented amongst the individual leaders in the conference. On the flip side, 8th ranked Duke is 10-1 and has no players in the top 5 of any of the individual statistical categories listed. What the Blue Devils do have going for em' is that they are ranked 2nd in both team 3 point and team field goal shooting percentage. In conclusion, if your team makes a high percentage of their shots they'll probably win basketball games. I also know that if you score more runs than the other teams in baseball you will win as well. It's a shame that everyone isn't born with this ability to deduce.