Many of you might already know that I work as a freelancer for Raycom Sports. I have been a Font Coordinator for over 5 years now for major college and professional sporting events. I have been involved with different phases of television sports since the late 80’s.
Never before have I experienced an ACC Season like this one….
In the last week I have worked four games, starting with the NCSU-DUKE Thursday a week ago. I then traveled to Virginia-Virginia Tech, which was an overtime game. On Super Bowl Sunday, I had the Wake-NCSU game-yet another one going down to the wire.
This week was the mother of all matchups…UNC & Duke. The last 9-mile battle that I worked was for CBS and happened to be Sean May’s last regular season game in a Tarheel Uniform. May went out in strong fashion with 26 points and 24 rebounds.
I figured we were destined for another close one…In fact going into the game 22 of the first 44 ACC games have been decided by three points or less, or in overtime. (I have had too many of the 22 games this year)
So what happened in this matchup???
Here are the 5 things:
1. UNC BENCH-Danny Green was the only non-starter to take a shot and he didn’t stop with one shot, another and another and another….you get the point-all but one went clank. Green finished the night 1-10 from the field for 3 points. Duke, which leads the ACC in Bench Scoring won that battle 22-3.
2. Halftime Adjustment-With the Devils holding a slight edge at the intermission, 42-39- I am sure they received a word or two from Coach K as he layed out a well orchestrated plan for the second half, which in my opinion proves that he will be Coach of the Year in the ACC. K should stand for King as in King of adjustments at the half.
Hansbrough & Thompson combined for 27 points and 13-18 shooting in the first half. Different story after the break-13 points on 4-9 shooting.
3. No Q-Time- Quentin Thomas tied individual season high turnovers-6 in his 35 minutes of play. For the night, the Devils, which lead the league in Forced Turnovers (19.2) had converted 20 UNC miscues into 14 points.
4. The 3-Ball-Behind the stroke of Greg Paulus the Blue Devils won this battle connecting on 13 of 29 3’s including 8 of 16 in the first half. The Heels only hit 3 of 17 on the night.
5. Lawson Loss-The obvious one for last. I honestly felt that Carolina was sandbagging and Lawson was going to come out with the best game of his two-year career. Prior to his injury, Lawson had hit the double-figure plateau 8 of the last 9 games. Didn’t happen tonight as he sat on the bench nursing a sore ankle.