Tuesday, November 23, 2004

The ACC is Here!

Well, last night was my first glimpse of the ACC, as I caught most of the second half of the Duke-Davidson game, and all of the North Carolina-BYU game, both on ESPN. It was comforting to again have access to the best basketball conference in the land. My reactions:

1) I didn’t get to see as much of Duke as I wanted to, since I was working late, but I guess I saw their best stretch of the game, since they went on a tremendous run at the beginning of the second half, and must have coasted in from there. I wouldn’t know, because I was making dinner at the time, and wasn’t real keyed into the game.

2) I like the new Duke road uniforms. They’re a nice, modern blue uniform, and as somewhat of a traditionalist, I’m surprisingly pleased with the updated look.

3) I see a lot of people picking Sheldon Williams for All-American honors. Honestly, I just don’t see it. I will admit to noticing early last year that he was the one Duke sophomore (now junior) that had taken a real leap in ability from his freshman year, but I don’t know that I’d be ready to make him an All-American. I guess that talk kind of follows you, though, when you’re arguably the best player on the Duke roster.

4) Watching North Carolina last night, I’m confused as to how they managed to lose their opening game. I recognize that Raymond Felton was suspended for the first game, but with the starting five that the Heels have, I’m not sure how they drop a game to anyone outside of the top-25. They sure didn’t look like they’d be doing that again, getting up by 40 points on BYU last night. They may have lost a game, but I plan on seeing these guys hovering around the #1 ranking for awhile.

5) The thing that impressed me most about Carolina last night was their passing. Every guy on the court can move the ball around quickly, and they each know where the other is supposed to be. It’s almost unbelievable to see this early in the season. Then again, usually the passing is done to set up a guy on the blocks, so you always know where the last guy’s going to be. And if that last guy is Sean May, you can take that last pass to the bank. And that, my friends, is my second heaping of praise upon Sean May this year.

6) Okay, I’ve officially been converted in my opinion of the Carolina guards. While I’ve always thought Rashad McCants to be better, last night I think I became a Raymond Felton convert. He gets the ball out quick, and knows what to do with it once he gets up court. McCants may be, as Jay Bilas opined, the best offensive player in college basketball, but for total court awareness, I’ll take Felton.

7) So I finally broke down last night and ordered the Time Warner Digital Sports package. For an extra $5 per month, I get like 6 more sports channels. While I don’t really need to watch the NASCAR channel, I will now be afforded the opportunity to watch lots of overlooked non-conference games. At the end of the day, though, I suppose the real reason for the order was that I wanted to get College Sports Television because of its tendency to show high school All-Star games. It’s never too early to get started on next season, you know...

Well, it could be a lean night for hoops–there are three state teams playing, and no one’s on television. I’d go to the UWM game live, but I’ve already seen their opponent, Parkside, and I don’t see this being a pretty game. Plus, if you had as many dishes to do as I do, you’d stay home, too.


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