, Newburyport, MA


March 20, 2013

ACC coaches not pleased with just 4 tourney teams


But the Hurricanes ended up with a No. 2 (East Region) just like that Mark Price-led Yellow Jackets team.

Mike Bobinski, who chaired the selection committee, said Gonzaga edged out Miami for a No. 1 seed. But while senior Reggie Johnson said after the UNC win that Miami deserved a No. 1, coach Jim Larranaga and other players said they weren’t worried about it.

“It doesn’t matter to us,” senior guard Durand Scott said. “I want them to give what we deserve — nothing less and nothing more.”

Duke (27-5) looked set to earn a No. 1 after Ryan Kelly returned from a two-month absence due to a foot injury. The Blue Devils were 18-0 with Kelly and 9-4 without him before the ACC tournament but fell flat in a quarterfinal exit to Maryland. The Blue Devils ended up as a No. 2 to top NCAA overall seed Louisville in the Midwest.

The Tar Heels (24-10) won eight of 10 after switching to a four-guard lineup to reach the ACC final. But they ended up as the No. 8 in the South Region with a trip to Kansas City, Mo., where Williams coached Kansas during several Big 12 tournaments.

If they can beat Villanova on Friday, the Tar Heels could face the top-seeded Jayhawks in the third round.

As for N.C. State (24-10), the preseason ACC favorite earned the No. 5 seed in the ACC tournament and reached the semifinals to return to the NCAAs for the second straight year. The Wolfpack earned the No. 8 in the East and could have a third-round matchup with top-seeded Indiana.

Virginia (21-11) had wins against Duke and North Carolina, but losses to Old Dominion, Delaware and Boston College undermined that good work. Maryland (22-12) beat Duke twice yet lost four of six entering the ACC tournament.

“The perception of our league just wasn’t great,” Terrapins coach Mark Turgeon said. “Our league was much better than last year. ... (The ACC) had some bad losses early and it just stuck with us. And teams like us and Virginia just didn’t get it done on the road. If we just would have won on the road a little bit more I think both of us would have gotten in. But we didn’t.”

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