ACC basketball capsules: Tuesday outlook

Tuesday, Feb. 21

Clemson (13-13, 5-7) at Georgia Tech (9-17, 2-10)
When:  7 p.m.
Where: Atlanta, Philips Arena (18,200)
Fast break: Big game for Clemson if the Tigers are to entertain thoughts of playing in the NIT, which would do them some good. Defend and hit some 3s and that should be enough to earn a victory. Tech has an opportunity to win a game against a team that sometimes struggles scoring points.
Forecast: Clemson, 58-54.

North Carolina (23-4, 10-2) at N.C. State (18-9, 7-50
When:  8 p.m.
Where: Raleigh, RBC Center (19,700)
Fast break: This might be one of the more wild atmospheres ever for a UNC at State game. State officials are raising the bar by honoring the 1989 team (a 23-year anniversary, that’s a first) for its Wolfpack spirit, etc, something that was decided Sunday. Too bad the focus along Tobacco Road isn’t on State’s recent struggles and how crucial this game is to its NCAA chances. Too much discussion still regards Tom Gugliotta and Chris Corchinani – former Wolfpack greats – being kicked out of the arena last Saturday by referee Karl Hess. As far as hoops goes, the Pack could be wound really tight after blowing a 20-point lead at Duke and getting rolled at home by FSU. UNC presents much more difficult matchups and is playing very well. State has a chance if it gets off to a good start and gets its fanatical crowd behind it. Otherwise, Mark Gottfried’s team could wilt quickly if the Tar Heels start out hot, which hasn’t been the norm for them.
Forecast: UNC, 77-67.

Miami (16-9, 7-5) at Maryland (15-11, 5-7)
When:  8 p.m.
Where: College Park, MD, Comcast Center (17,900)
Fast break: ENORMOUS game for the Hurricanes. If they can grab a road win against a team that can easily beat them, it would keep, Jim Larranaga’s club afloat as an NCAA at-large team. Miami must use its guard play to get good looks, and then take advantage of the matchup problems Kenny Kadji can create. Maryland can’t let Reggie Johnson own the paint and Terrell Stoglin must play smart hoops.
Forecast: Miami, 68-66.

Virginia (20-6, 7-5) at Virginia Tech (15-12, 4-8)
When:  9 p.m.
Where: Blacksburg, VA, Cassell Coliseum (9,847)
Fast break: Every game from here on out will probably be a challenge for the Wahoos because of their injury situation. The Hokies beat them in Charlottesville last month, so UVa needs to return the favor. Virginia isn’t getting much respect from the bracket gurus, even though they have some nice non-ACC wins, so they need to pile up some more wins and can’t afford slip-ups against teams below them, such as Tech.
Forecast: Virginia, 54-50.

Andrew Jones’ record: 184-46