ACC Stock Watch: January 17

Posted by Mick McDonald on January 17th, 2017

Each week during the ACC season, RTC will review the last seven days to discuss the teams, players and anything else trending across the league.

STOCK UP

  • Notre Dame. As expertly diagrammed by our Brad Jenkins last week, winning on the road in the ACC is quite the chore. So when a team can win a pair of games over likely NCAA Tournament teams away from home in the same week — as Notre Dame did with victories over Miami and Virginia Tech — it will result in a “Stock Up” spot on our list for the second consecutive week. Irish point guard Matt Farrell has made so many big plays down the stretch for his team that, according to David Peel, head coach Mike Brey referred to Farrell as “his Aaron Rodgers.” Now that’s some high praise, indeed.

Donovan Mitchell is becoming the leader of a very talented Louisville team. (Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

  • Donovan Mitchell, Louisville. When you think about the great Rick Pitino teams, you think about terrific guards — players like Peyton Siva and Russ Smith from Louisville’s 2013 National Championship team or Tony Delk and Wayne Turner from Kentucky’s 1996 National Championship squad. Pitino’s best teams have always had outstanding athletes in the backcourt leading the way. Sophomore Donovan Mitchell is the next name on that list. In the Cardinals’ last five games, Mitchell is averaging 19.0 points, 4.6 rebounds, 3.6 assists and 2.2 steals per game. His ascension to stardom will become even more important in the short term as news broke last night that starting point guard Quentin Snider will miss 2-3 weeks with a hip injury. If Mitchell can continue to play at a very high level, Pitino could be headed back to another Final Four.
  • North Carolina. The Tar Heels’ home win over Florida State on Saturday was an important step for Roy Williams’ team if it wants to win the ACC this season. After also beating Syracuse during Big Monday last night, North Carolina has now won five straight games after an ACC-opening hiccup at Georgia Tech. The key to the streak has been Williams’ offense, as the Tar Heels, riding stellar three-point shooting to the tune of 40.5 percent, have scored at least 85 points in each of those five games. When they miss, extra opportunities abound, with North Carolina also averaging nearly 17 offensive rebounds per game during the stretch. A combination of an offense that is clicking, domination of the offensive glass and a favorable schedule over the next few weeks could give the Tar Heels an early advantage in the ACC title race.

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ACC Stock Watch: January 10

Posted by Mick McDonald on January 10th, 2017

Each week during the ACC season, RTC will review the last seven days to discuss the teams, players and anything else trending across the league.

STOCK UP

Syracuse. Has Jim Boeheim righted the ship in upstate New York? After an incredibly disappointing 8-6 start to the season, the Orange notched consecutive easy wins over Miami and Pittsburgh at the Carrier Dome last week. In both victories, Boeheim used the same five players — John Gillon, Andrew White, Tyus Battle, Tyler Roberson and Tyler Lydon — for all but 17 minutes of game action, and White and Battle in particular played all 80 minutes. It appears that Boeheim’s shortened rotation has been effective, especially on the defensive end. In two losses to St. John’s and Boston College, the Orange allowed 93 and 96 points, respectively; last week they held Miami to 55 and a high-scoring Pittsburgh squad to just 66 points.

Has Jim Boeheim found the answer to what was ailing the Orange? (Nick Lisi/AP)

Joel Berry II, North Carolina. The North Carolina point guard was in our Stock Down section last week after he struggled in the Tar Heels’ surprising loss to Georgia Tech. He earned his way on to the Stock Up list this week after a tremendous performance in a win at Clemson. After shooting a miserable 3-of-13 in Atlanta, Berry responded with an impressive 12-of-19 performance at Clemson, including seven three-pointers and great leadership down the stretch. He followed that up with 19 points, five rebounds and five assists in Sunday’s blowout win over NC State. If North Carolina expects to get back to the National Championship game, it will need Berry to play like he did this week to get there.

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ACC Stock Watch: January 3

Posted by Mick McDonald on January 3rd, 2017

Each week of the ACC season, RTC will review the last seven days and discuss the teams, players and anything else that is trending up and down across the league.

STOCK UP

Clemson. For the Tigers, anything less than a trip back to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2011 will be a major disappointment. Sporting a pair of respectable losses (Xavier and Oklahoma on a neutral court) and a handful of good-not-great wins (at South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Nebraska), the last week of 2016 looked like a critical point in the season for Brad Brownell’s club. Fast forward a week to wins over a very talented UNC-Wilmington team and a much-improved Wake Forest squad and Clemson now sits at 11-2 with a big home game to come against North Carolina tonight. The Tigers are undoubtedly feeling good about the direction of the program and it doesn’t hurt that the football team had a nice weekend too.

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Josh Okogie helped lead Georgia Tech to a surprising win over North Carolina in their ACC opener (Adam Hagy/USA Today Sports)

Georgia Tech. We wrote last week that the Yellow Jackets should already be pleasantly surprised with the list of accomplishments Josh Pastner’s team has checked off this season. We would guess that adding a huge home win over North Carolina to open the conference season might instantly jump to the top of that list. Pastner’s feisty bunch frustrated the Tar Heels all New Year’s Eve afternoon in Atlanta, slowing the pace and retreating into a suffocating zone defense to keep them from easy transition baskets. Josh Okogie was terrific, scoring 26 points that included a sterline 11-of-13 performance from the free throw line. The Yellow Jackets are not likely to be an NCAA Tournament threat this season, but in one home game they proved that anyone thinking a trip to Atlanta would be an easy “W” this year has another thing coming. Right, Jon Rothstein?

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Big 12 Stock Watch Reactions

Posted by Taylor Erickson on January 8th, 2014

College hoops fans everywhere, rejoice. With the conclusion of the BCS National Championship Game, the scene in college athletics now focuses squarely on our beloved game of college basketball. In customary fashion, Sports Illustrated’s Seth Davis released his annual stock report Monday, providing you his Jim Cramer-esque take on 63 teams across the country, and whether you should buy, sell, or hold firm on each as conference play begins. If you’re unfamiliar with the format of his article, Davis explains the thought process behind his decision on each, essentially explaining that if a team has over-performed in the non-conference season, he’s more likely to sell that team high, and if a team has under-performed in the non-conference, he’s likely to buy low. Here’s our take on a few teams in the Big 12 on Davis’ stock watch.

[Ed. Note: This was written after Tuesday night’s games, but it includes the rankings/records from the time Davis’ original article was written]:

DeAndre Kane has been sensational for the Cyclones this season.

DeAndre Kane has been sensational for the Cyclones this season.

Baylor (12-1, No. 7):  Seth Davis Says – SELL

Now I’ll be the first to admit that having a chance to watch Baylor play in Ames before writing this article could certainly influence my opinion, but history in league play would suggest that the Bears as the #7 team in the nation would be the perfect time to sell high on Scott Drew’s team. Neutral-site, non-conference wins over Colorado and Kentucky were nice, but if Tuesday night was any indication, playing consistently good defense could be a problem for the Bears.

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SEC Stock Watch Reactions

Posted by Greg Mitchell on January 7th, 2014

SI.com‘s Seth Davis is buying up the SEC. In his “Hoop Thoughts Stock Watch” piece published on Monday, he was overall pretty bullish on the SEC: “buying” four teams, “holding” on another, and “selling” two more. But there’s a qualifier. Davis likes several SEC teams’ chances because they play in a weakened basketball league and will have ample opportunities to pad their records. Let’s join the comment section denizens and react to a few of Davis’ decisions that we disagree with. 

Cuonzo Martin may indeed have his first tournament team at Tennessee, but he needs to find a point guard (msn.foxsports.com).

Cuonzo Martin may indeed have his first NCAA Tournament team at Tennessee, but he needs to find a point guard (Credit: FoxSports).

  • TennesseeDavis = BuyRTC = Sell. This is a close call, but a single dominant win against an up-and-down Virginia team isn’t enough to push the Vols into the buy category. You can’t help but glare at the talent the Vols can put on the floor, and Tennessee is one of the best offensive rebounding teams in the country. Cuonzo Martin might very well have his first NCAA Tournament team, and one that has the horses to make a run to the second weekend. But the point guard position still isn’t ironed out, as Antonio Barton would be best served playing off the ball where his three-point shooting can be utilized in creating space for Jarnell Stokes. The answer might be freshman Darius Thompson, but he’s turned it over too much and played only 13 minutes against Virginia. Read the rest of this entry »
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