Owing to the school's final exam schedule, Boston College will take this week off from ACC play. They'll take on Hartford in a couple of games over the weekend, but they won't play any midweek games and won't take on any teams from within their league.
That's especially bad news for a team that's lost six in a row and is now entrenched in 12th place. Two weeks ago, BC was in seventh place on the inside of the ACC postseason bubble. Now, they don't even have to lose in order to be eliminated, heading into this weekend on the brink and in need of some major assistance.
A limited conference schedule last week allowed victorious teams to pick up major ground. Virginia Tech, by virtue of their sweep of the Eagles, wound up in eighth place at weekend's end after starting on Friday in a tie for 11th. Thanks to a sweep of Pitt, Miami all but clinched their division, assuring themselves of the second seed in the tournament. And Clemson was able to win once, but their two losses to Louisville kept them right in the middle of the race.
With all the other teams idle, the teams losing lost a ton of ground. Without those games in hand, Boston College now faces an uphill struggle in order to make the ACC Tournament. They sit over two games back with three games left on their schedule, meaning they can be eliminated as early as this weekend. Georgia Tech, Wake Forest, and Virginia Tech are all tied for the final three slots, with Virginia one game back in 11th place. BC holds the tiebreaker over the Yellow Jackets but loses head-to-head situations with the Deacs and Hokies. They didn't play Virginia.
Sitting 2.5 games back, if Georgia Tech wins two and Wake and VT each win one over the next couple of weeks, the Birds are done. That would put the Yellow Jackets 3.5 games up on the Eagles with three games left to play, and it would put Wake Forest and Virginia Tech three games up apiece. Since BC doesn't own those tiebreaker scenarios, they would be eliminated.
On top of it all, that doesn't set anything up for next weekend, where BC hosts Notre Dame. The fifth place Fighting Irish come to Chestnut Hill after this weekend, and in order for the Eagles to make the tournament, they would need to sweep a win and hope for sweep losses out of the other schools. Needless to say, while mathematically possible, that makes making the ACC Tournament more and more an improbability.
So let's scoreboard watch this weekend. Wake Forest plays NC State at home, Georgia Tech hosting last place Pittsburgh. BC will at least have a chance to make the tournament next week because the Hokies are off this weekend, but they'll be relying on Pittsburgh to pick up a three-game sweep. Remember that none of this takes into account Virginia, who still sit a full game and a half in front of the Eagles. The Cavaliers play Duke before wrapping up with UNC.
Let's look at the standings and see where everyone resides in the penultimate weekend of ACC games. As you can see, the bunched table is now much more spread out, and it looks like we'll have a couple of teams jockeying for the final spot or two tops come next weekend:
|Place||Team||Record||GB (Division)||GB (Conference)|
|7)||North Carolina State||11-12||9.5||9.5|