The pick: Miami.

N.C. State vs. No. 4 Virginia: As most wearing orange and blue know all too well, the Cavaliers haven’t reached the semifinals since 1995. They defeated the Wolfpack 58-55 in the teams’ only regular-season meeting, but All-ACC guard Lorenzo Brown rolled his ankle with State leading 12-7 and did not return.

The pick: N.C. State.

Maryland vs. No. 2 Duke: With Alex Len dominating Mason Plumlee, the Terps defeated the Blue Devils 83-81 last month, avenging a 20-point loss at Cameron in January. Lightning in a bottle.

The pick: Duke.

Florida State vs. No. 3 North Carolina: The Tar Heels had won six straight before Saturday’s home loss to Duke, including a 21-point dusting of the Seminoles. Carolina also prevailed in Tallahassee, and a third conquest of FSU would set up a semifinal against Duke.

The pick: North Carolina.


N.C. State vs. Miami: Reggie Johnson’s last-second tip-in lifted the Hurricanes over the Wolfpack 79-78 last month, State’s only home defeat this season. A game of similar quality would be most welcome.

The pick: Miami.

North Carolina vs. Duke: The Blue Devils have won their five most recent tournament encounters with the Tar Heels, last losing in the 1998 final. They also swept the regular-season series.

The pick: Duke.


Miami vs. Duke: Their two regular-season meetings were, shall we say, memorable. The Hurricanes’ 90-63 victory in January marked the worst loss for a No. 1 team since 1968, when UCLA caved to Houston by 32 points. Two Saturdays ago, playing for the first time since injuring his right foot in early January, Ryan Kelly scored a career-high 36 points as Duke countered with a 79-76 victory.

The pick: Duke.

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