College Basketball Betting: ACC Tournament Preview
by Robert Ferringo - 03/12/2009
For the first time since 2001 and for only the second time in the last 20 years the ACC Tournament will grace Atlanta. This year's version will be held from March 12-15 at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta. This should be one of the most competitive, most aesthetically pleasing, and most important conference tournaments of the weekend and no less than eight teams come to Hotlanta with hopes of securing an NCAA Tournament bid.
Here is Doc's Sports 2009 ACC Tournament Preview:
No. 1 North Carolina - There isn't much that I can tell you about the Tar Heels that you don't already know. They are the top dog in the ACC and right now are the No. 1 team in the country. Ty Lawson is a little banged up and I doubt that Roy Williams will risk his long-term health (long term being, like, until April) in their opening game. Without Lawson, the machine slows down but doesn't break down.
No. 2 Wake Forest - The Demon Deacons are dangerous for all the wrong reasons in this tournament. They have the talent to run roughshod over either Duke or North Carolina or they have the inexperience to get bounced by either Maryland or North Carolina State. Despite a really great year the Deacons are still pretty undervalued. They are a stellar 11-6 ATS in their last 17 games and have covered four straight. I think they are looking forward to a breakout tournament, just like Clemson last year.
No. 3 Duke - Soft, softer, softest. Winning in March is all about guard play. But you at least have to have something on the interior. The Blue Devils don't. They have two of the most talented perimeter players in the conference in Gerald Henderson and Jon Scheyer. But they are starting some random freshman point guard, they use a center and four guard set a lot of the time, and they aren't in the Top 100 in either field goal shooting or field goal defense. They have covered four of five. But betting on the Blue Devils is never a good long-term investment.
No. 4 Florida State - I love this team. Can't say it enough. The Seminoles are excellent and really are a team to be reckoned with this March. They are the best defensive team in the conference, they are 17-7-1 ATS on the season, they have a legit go-to scorer in Toney Douglas, and they are an experienced bunch with a chip on its shoulder.
No. 5 Clemson - The Tigers made the ACC Finals last year only to come up short against the Tar Heels. They should take care of business against Georgia Tech in the opening round - although both of their regular season matchups were closer than the scores indicate - and then get a rematch with the Seminoles. These teams played a very physical grinder at FSU a couple weeks ago and the 'Noles earned the season sweep.
No. 5 Clemson vs. No. 12 Georgia Tech
Clemson's full-court pressure defense is kind of the worst-case scenario for the Yellowjackets, who have had awful point guard play. Clemson covered both meetings and won by 14 and 12 points. But they were up only three points at home in the first meeting and were actually down 15 points when they met at Tech. Georgia has somewhat of a home edge playing here in Atlanta. But I'm not sure if that can offset the talent disparity.
No. 7 Maryland vs. No. 10 N. C. State
Really interesting game here. The Terps beat the Wolfpack on their home court just 10 days ago on the strength of 33 points from Greivis Vasquez and 48 percent shooting from deep. Maryland is in must-win territory and they are a fringe NCAA bubble team. Yet, they aren't even favored by a bucket in this game. State has some experience and they are always a feisty bunch.
No. 6 Boston College vs. No. 11 Virginia
The Cavs had covered all four of their previous meetings with the Eagles prior to a 10-point home loss to B.C. last month. Virginia is clearly the dregs of the conference and they are just 3-12 SU in their last 15 games. Further, 12 of their last 13 losses have come by more than five points, so this club has been getting bombed. This is Tyrese Rice's last go-round in the ACC Tournament and I think that the Eagles want to lock up their NCAA Tournament bid with one more win. The Eagles are 20-8 ATS in neutral site games and Virginia is just 1-6-1 ATS on a neutral court.