The road to Durham is officially at a close. After an incredibly tense and wild weekend, eight of the 10 playoff spots shifted in some capacity, with shocking conclusions and drama of the highest degree.
In winning two out of three games from Florida State, Miami clinched the ACC's regular season championship. By defeating the Seminoles, however, the Hurricanes opened the door for Virginia, after sweeping Virginia Tech, to finish in third position. The shocking slide locked the defending national champions into a more favorable draw in Pool B with Atlantic Division champion Louisville.
Two weeks ago, Clemson was in ninth place with North Carolina in 10th while Duke and Boston College sat outside the ACC bubble. Then all of a sudden, Duke went on a tear, winning two out of three against FSU and sweeping an abbreviated two-game series against Pittsburgh. That pushed the Blue Devils into seventh place.
At the same time, Wake Forest was in seventh place two weeks ago. After struggling to the finish line, losing to both Boston College and Louisville, the Demon Deacons snuck into the playoffs thanks to the sagging North Carolina Tar Heels, who wound up finishing in 11th.
Two weeks ago, Notre Dame was in eighth. They missed the playoffs altogether.
Since the beginning of May, the only team that didn't wind up moving a position was Miami, who won the regular season championship, and Virginia tech, who were five games back of 13th place. Everyone else moved in some capacity.
So now the ACC Tournament field is set. Pool A will feature the top-seeded Miami Hurricanes with fourth-seeded Florida State, fifth-seeded NC State, and the winner of the Boston College-Georgia Tech game. Pool B features second-seeded Louisville with a suddenly-surging Virginia team, sixth-seeded Clemson, and the winner of the Duke-Wake Forest game.
There are already some underlying storylines. First of all, that Duke-Wake game is going to be fantastic. The tournament is being played in Durham at the home of the Durham Bulls, a minor league affiliate for the Tampa Bay Rays. The Bulls share their home stadium with, you guessed it, Duke, and the Blue Devils are playing against a Tobacco Road school located an hour away.
Meanwhile, Boston College earned a bid to play in an incredibly favorabel draw. The Eagles will play Georgia Tech, who they just took two out of three games from (and, in some minds, should've swept), and they could potentially advance into a pool with teams like NC State, who they defeated earlier in the year, and Florida State, who they only played once thanks to the freak April snowstorms in Boston.
Miami proves to be the only unknown, but then again, the Eagles have to make it to pool play before they guarantee themselves games against Pool A opponents.
Broadcast and television schedule has been released, and further details will be provided when possible.