EIGHT SCHOOLS STILL OVER .500 AS ACC WBB SCHEDULE FINISHES WEEK 5 OF CONFERENCE PLAY
|(Battles fought and battles ahead for the ACC WBB squads)|
Over half of the schools participating in the Atlantic Conference women's basketball race are still over .500 as 12 of the 15 schools have played at least five conference games. Only Duke (4-0, 14-1), Notre Dame (3-1, 12-2) and UNC (1-3, 10-5) haven't reached that mark yet, and, in Duke's case, being a game back of most of the rest of the league has them ahead of the rest with the only perfect conference mark.
Most of the schools you'd normally figure to be are near the top of the standings. FSU and Louisville are 4-1 and tied for second, while Notre Dame is a 1/2 game back at 3-1.
Four schools are involved in the logjam at 3-2 (NC State, Syracuse, Boston College and Miami. Only Boston College really surprises there, and they have surprised...by winning their last two...against NC State and Florida State.
Virginia Tech is at 3-3 in conference and 13-3 overall. They are UofL's next opponent and will welcome the Cards into Blacksburg. It may be too early to sound the "abandon ship" alarm for the Hokies just yet in the ACC...but one would think a 3-4 mark would be pretty formidable mark to overcome.
Below .500 are Virginia and Clemson at 2-3 and I don't know of many who saw either as a major contender for the league champions title. Wake Forest is 2-4 in league play and 2-2 in their last four conference games. UNC is 1-3 and that's a major surprise to a lot of the league members. Pitt and Georgia Tech are at the bottom of the league at 0-5...you kind of expected Pitt to be down there, but not Georgia Tech.
Out of the 15 schools, only one is below .500 in their overall standings and that is Pitt.
The Thursday slate features some interesting contests
--NC State will try and hand FSU their second conference loss, but they'll have to travel to Tallahassee to do it. FSU is 8-0 this season at home, so this will be no easy task for Ms. Wuf and her Pack.
-- Louisville heads to Blacksburg. Jared will have much more on this one in his Thursday write up. VT is 8-1 at home and the Cards will have their work cut out for them
-- League leading Duke has Clemson visiting Cameron Indoor Stadium. The Tigers are on a two-game losing streak (to Syracuse and FSU) and it's tough to see it ending in Durham
-- UNC heads north to Charlottesville to wrangle with the Cavaliers. VA has dropped their last two (to NC State and Virginia Tech) but UNC comes in with just one conference win. You make the call on this one...
-- Notre Dame brings in Wake Forest and one can't help but think this one might be the biggest blowout on Thursday night. The Irish are strong this season and Wake fell to Clemson by one and Duke by 10.
-- Syracuse heads to Boston College and the Eagles may still be flying high after beating FSU Sunday. Another one that could be a very close one, once again -- I'll let you make the call.
So, it's still a very wide open ACC WBB race ahead and teams can get hot, players (unfortunately) get injured and upset will happen. Make no mistake about it, the Cards will have some VERY tough battles the rest of the way.
Jared will prep you for Cards vs Hokies in the Thursday Cardinal Couple column and we'll have full coverage of the outcome from Daryl in the Friday column. .Walz has scheduled a presser today at 12:30 to discuss the VT game, but it looks like I'll have to miss attending it, due to medical issues. .