It's not even Thanksgiving, but some ACC teams are already playing their way onto the NCAA tournament bubble. Florida State, Miami and Virginia only can hope that the losses they have suffered in the last week won't hurt come March.
The Seminoles (1-1), who started the year No. 25 in country and were picked fourth in the ACC preseason poll, dropped a home game to South Alabama (1-0). Jim Larranaga's Miami Hurricanes (1-1), picked fifth in the ACC, set themselves up for disaster with a loss at Florida Gulf Coast. Even if they were picked third in the Atlantic Sun Conference, the Eagles (1-1) are NCAA eligible for only their second season.
Virginia (1-2) might be forgiven for a tough season-opening defeat to George Mason (1-1) at Patriot Center. But a home loss to Delaware (2-1) cost the Cavaliers a trip to Madison Square Garden for the preseason NIT semifinals. Wasn't it the CAA that was supposed to be irrelevant?
Instead of playing games that could have helped their RPI, Virginia's defeat will sting in the win-loss column and on their resume when the Selection Committee meets.
- Craig Stouffer