As the halfway point of the 2023-24 ACC schedule approaches this week, the calendar is going to turn to February and a lot of talk for the NCAA Tournament is going to pick up. A lot of different bracketologies have different results for the ACC.
Saturday, Clemson was nipped, 72-71, at Cameron Indoor Stadium by Duke on a pair of late free throws. Following the game, CBS Sports College Basketball Insider Jon Rothstein posted on X that there is a real possibility that the ACC gets only two teams, Duke and North Carolina, selected to the 68-team field for the NCAA Tournament in March.
If that ends up being the case, then that would be something. Why would that be something? Consider the following, the ACC has won 15 of 23 games against the PAC 12, Big 12, and Big 10, which is projected to have more teams in the field than the ACC. Virginia has won three non-conference games against Power 5 conferences.
Clemson is the only other ACC team that has consistently been in most, if not all other bracketologies with Duke and North Carolina. Virginia is beginning to make a case, Wake Forest has been hanging around in different projections and if North Carolina State turns things around, they could make a push for a bid.
In the current Net Rankings following Saturday's games, North Carolina is No. 7, Duke is No. 18, Clemson is No. 28, Virginia Tech is No. 46, Wake Forest is No. 47 and Virginia is No. 48. That's six teams ranked in the precious NET Rankings and you can read into that any way you want. Insiders like Rothstein like to use it as a metric.
Is it likely the ACC will get only two teams? That remains to be seen, but if that ends up happening, then it would be a shame, however, the conference still has time to make a case for them to get more than Duke and North Carolina into the NCAA Tournament.