Saturday, March 10, 2012

A great semifinal Saturday at the ACC tournament -- 10 thoughts

Ten thoughts on two fantastic games in Atlanta that ended with Florida State and UNC winning by a combined five points:

1 -- After watching the replay numerous times, I think Kendall Marshall charged on the winning basket against N.C. State in UNC's 69-67 win. That one should have been waved off, as Marshall lowered his shoulder and made contact on the drive.

2 -- I don't think N.C. State's Richard Howell was clearly fouled, however, on the last play of the game. That was the correct no-call. It looked more like a scrum and Howell never had total possession of the ball.

3 -- Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski said after his team lost 62-59 that Florida State's Michael Snaer was the best competitor in the ACC.

4 -- If I'm Roy Williams, I don't play John Henson against Florida State unless Henson is absolutely 100 percent without pain in that aching left wrist. Ultimately, I think the Tar Heels have a No.1 NCAA seed either way, and FSU is so physical the chance of re-injury is not out of the question.

5 -- How good is Duke anyway? That's the subject of my Sunday column. The Blue Devils need Ryan Kelly back and need to make some more shots -- they were 10-for-46 from three-point range in Atlanta.

6 -- If Seth Curry's 40-footer at the buzzer had gone in to tie that game and send it into overtime, he would have joined Christian Laettner, Austin Rivers, Jeff Capel and a couple of others on the short list of greatest Duke buzzer-beaters of all time.

7 -- How far off the radar has Duke's Andre Dawkins fallen? He played 17 minutes Saturday and had no points and no assists.

8 -- Florida State's 33-point win over UNC in the teams' only previous meeting will loom large Sunday, although everyone will say it doesn't matter. It does matter in that it has to give the Seminoles major confidence.

9 -- The Wolfpack would have had to call a timeout to get C.J. Leslie out of the game between his fourth and fifth fouls (which came 32 seconds apart -- the final one with 8:03 left). So while I blame the coaching staff for not keeping up with Leslie's fouls well enough and/or not communicating that to head coach Mark Gottfried, that was also Leslie's fault for committing a silly foul on an overly aggressive defensive play right after he had picked up his fourth one.

10 -- UNC and Duke both deserve to play in Greensboro next week for their first two games in the NCAA tournament. UNC as a No.1 seed and Duke as a No.2. I think N.C. State is in the tourney as well now and will get a seed around No.11 or so.

21 comments:

Anonymous said...

Marshall didn't lower his shoulder--he turned sideways in order to be able to create more space. Apparently you would rather listen to the whines of the Wolfpack conspiracy throrists than watch a replay.

And Curry's shot would have been waived off--fortunately, one of the officials saw the 4 steps he took before launching it.

Do your homework before postying, please.

Anonymous said...

The ACC and it's Referees are a complete JOKE! "...refs are supposed to exude a sense of impartiality." But we often forget that the ACC is "lead" by John Swofford, who happen to graduate from UNC AND worked for UNC. Many wonder why the ACC's OVERALL quality has tumbled over the years. Why don't someone do something about this?...Here's more on the ACC refs:
http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/ncaab-the-dagger-college-basketball-blog/officials-acc-tournament-honor-ref-ejected-n-c-190637077.html

Anonymous said...

Hey Anonymous 8:30 PM, your are blind if you think Marshall was moving sideways. Please let me know before you get on the highway so I can pull over - I don't want to be on the highway the same time as you are.

Also, what is "posting?"

Anonymous said...

go to statefansnation.com and just read

Anonymous said...

Marshall admitted he was certain he could get away with a foul after the game. Look up his quote! Refs have let UNC and Duke get away with anything AND the players know it. These are the results you get.

Slow and non-physical games. People criticizing ACC refereeing. Less basketball game attendance except for UNC. Fans from other conferences saying the ACC is crap now. ACC being less competitive outside of the ACC outside of UNC and Duke. Players (UNC and Duke) knowing that the can push the envelope in many various ways. Foul, walk, travel, or whatever.

Welcome to the conference of haves and have nots! Welcome to the "soft" ACC!

Sandy said...

Anon. 8:30 pm, Scott is exactly right about Marshall's foul. He lowered his shoulder, drove it intentionally into Alex Johnson and floored him, to clear his way to the basket; only his shoulder went sideways! Scott is honest: for all of Howell's angry protest, that last moment no-call was correct.

I also agree with Scott on pt. 4 (on Henson). As for Duke, a classic example of "you live by the three (in some games), you die by the three (in others)".

Back to the Wolfpack: they definitely earned their NCAA invite.

Anonymous said...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XCUUGdn-irY&feature=youtu.be

Just watch the video.

Anonymous said...

By the definition of a block/charge, the Marshall no-call was closer to a block than a charge, but I think a no-call was appropriate. As for the Curry heave, am I the only one who saw him grab the ball and take off running without a single dribble? If you get a chance, watch it again. He just started running and then threw up the shot. There is no way it could have counted...although he walked pretty bad in the UNC game before making a 3 near the end of the game and they didn't call that one.

Anonymous said...

The little UNCheat moniker is pretty tired . Come up with something more creative to describe the stellar basketball program hat has een run without a hint of impropriety since Frank McGuire left around 1962. As to the officiating, the most absurd thing was to double the amount of time on the clock from .6 to 1.2. The game is 40 minutes. In the course of that 40 minutes, the clock stops and starts what maybe 100 times. If we added up every second or millisecond either way it probably ends up equal. In this case, there was clearly .6 of a second on the clock by the time the official signaled timeout and the clock was stopped. So, it makes it pretty annoying for someone to argue that Howell was fouled as the players fought over the loose ball. Anyway, congrats to State for a hard fought game. It will be good for the conference for them to have a legitimate team, which they will have under Gott.

Anonymous said...

State fans will complain about the calls, but when will you be honest and question why the coaching staff left their most productive player in the game with 4 fouls with over 8 minutes to go...then you turn the ball over on two straight trips down the court. Bone headed plays...

Medlin said...

The view of the replay from the basket angle clearly showed the State player "humping" Marshall. He thrusted his mid section into Marshall as much as Marshall lowered a shoulder. Great no-call. And if the refs give Duke and NC all the calls how can it matter with them winning by double digits many times?

Anonymous said...

The ACC refs showed their UNC & Duke bias for the whole nation to witness today. Leslie's 4th foul and Marshall's last basket were identical plays, but both calls went UNC's way. The UNC player who stole the last pass landed out of bounds (no call) and Howell was fouled hard across the chest and arms (no foul). ACC Ref who called everything against NCST down the stretch tells Gottfried to "shut his Fing A** up. Can you imagine a Ref telling that to K or Roy? Then the last plays of Duke game - Rivers obvious push off (no call), Plumlee across end line while defending inbounds pass (no call), and Seth's 3 steps on shot (no call). If something isn't done, expect MD & GT to B1G, FSU & Clem or VT to SEC, and UVA, NCST to Big12 or Big East.

Anonymous said...

anonymous....you are an idiot...no way teams leave the conference. Please just go away and quit your whining.

Anonymous said...

If you think that Marshall's drive was not a charge, then OBVIOUSLY the charge whistled on Leslie for his 4th foul was wrong too. There's no other way to justify it except being a complete UNC homer. If Leslie's move was a charge (it wasn't) then Marshall's drive was DEFINITELY a charge (it was.)

Both calls were blown. Leslie's 3rd and 5th foul were legit, but his fourth was garbage, as was the no call on Marshall.

I agree that there should not have been a call at the end, the State player never had possession of the ball. State also had a dreadful turnover right after a TO in the last minute. Still, Marshall clearly lowered his shoulder and the defender was more set than the defender was against Leslie, who did not lower his shoulder.

Absolutely no way you can be unbiased and agree with the refs in both of those situations.

I wonder how much of today had to do with the memory of 'Karl Hess.' NCSU deserves better.

Anonymous said...

The NCSU fans were howling just as loud about how Justin Watts' foot "had" to be on the end line as they were about the Marshall no-call. But then someone posted a series of photographs taken in rapid succession by a News and Observer photographer clearly showing (a) Watts' feet weren't even close to the line and (b) a referee was about 3 feet away looking directly at Watts' feet. Without those photos, Scott Fowler would have had 11 points in his column, the 11th being that the refs blew the call on whether Watts was on the end line. And with Marshall's foul, two referees were looking directly at the play and both made the same no call. The day when the Observer publishes a Sports Section without an error is the day that Scott Fowler can second-guess a play were two officials were looking directly at the play and made the same call. Grow-up Fowler and stop this nonsense about how the referees are biased in favor of the better team. Is the Pulitzer Prize panel biased in favor of the New York Times or does the New Times have better writers than the Charlotte Observer?

Anonymous said...

It was pretty obvious on the broadcast that Watts wasn't out of bounds. There was another play where an NCSU player 'saved' the ball under his own basket and it bounced out of bounds first before going right to a Heel for a lay-in. It would have been UNC's ball either way but if the call had been correct at least NCSU would have been able to set their D.

I'm guessing the NCSU fans crying about Watts don't have HDTV ;) Either way, there were plenty of other 'questionable' calls that went against State to not have to cry about a legit good play by Watts.

Anonymous said...

Buncha Crybabies!!!! You Lose, We Win get over it. Go Heels! Woooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo, Ric Flair

Anonymous said...

Winners never whine and whiners never win. If State wants to get back to the top of the ACC they need to focus on basketball. People have been complaining about refs since the 1950's. I remember people calling dick Paparo "duke" Paparo. It time to shut up. There can be a foul called on every possession in bball. I don't want big east games played in 40s and 50s. I don't want thug ball. Coaches who teach that or bring it into the league need to quit whining. Why would an nba talent stay in college ball when you have mugga ball going on all over the confernce with a chance to get hurt. Teams with less talent resort to "aggressive" play like state this year and then whine when they get called for it. Go get more talented players and quit whining.

Anonymous said...

Instead of complaining about officials, how bout Scott Wood makes more than 1 shot or hits a 3. In their losses, he's been awful. Fix that before complaining. Sidenote: Curry walked on the 3. It's the 5 millionth time either Curry or Rivers has walked and it hasn't been called.

Anonymous said...

Lets not forget how much the networks stand to lose if Carolina v Duke is not the championship game. If the game is close they'll get the calls. Don't fool yourself into thinking otherwise.

Anonymous said...

All you had to do to see how far the ACC has fallen was watch the Syr.-UConn Quarterfinal game in the BE. Tough, physical play with only real fouls called, not the ticky-tack, wussy variety as in the ACC. Crowd totally engaged, standing and shouting for the last 10-12 min. And the BE is only the 3rd best conf. this year. H. Barnes, called the best Freshman last year is waaaaaaay too soft for NBA-should stay another year.
Despite his size, strength and quickness he is afraid to drive and prefers launching rainbow 3's from 25 ft., like yesterday.