Despite a lot of talk during the season that the Atlantic Coast Conference men’s basketball teams were weak this year, it’s late March and four conference teams are still in action, thank you very much.

Anyone who’s watched low seeds knock off highly ranked seeds in the tournament with alacrity this year knows how perilous each game can be, so it’s impressive that 25 percent of the remaining teams in action are ACC teams.

The University of Virginia made it into the NCAA Tournament play-in game by the skin of its teeth and lost the game that would have put it into the field of 64.

However, no ACC team selected lost in either the first or second round of the tournament, and now Duke, the University of North Carolina, North Carolina State and Clemson are all ready to take on opponents in the next round of play.

Number 6 seed Clemson is set to take on number 2 seed Arizona on Thursday, March 28 at 7:10 p.m. and number 1 seed North Carolina will take on number 4 seed Alabama at around 9:30 p.m.  Both of those games are on CBS.

On Friday, 11 seed NC State will go up against number 2 seed Marquette at 7:10 p.m., and number 4 Duke will have its hands full with the number 1 seeded Houston. Those games are on CBS as well.

Of the remaining ACC teams, NC State’s run has been the most miraculous and magical.  Had they not won the ACC Tournament by winning five games in five straight days and obtained an automatic bid, the team wouldn’t have been selected for the NCAA Tournament.

Since entering and winning two more games, State has played – and won – seven games in a 12-day period.  It is too early to say this, but right now the 2024 NC State team is bringing back vibes of Jim Valvano’s 1983 cardiac pack with its “survive and advance” philosophy that carried it all the way to the national championship.

If Carolina and Clemson both win, they will play each other in the following game, and, if Duke and State both win, they will go up against each other in the following game.

If Duke and Carolina continue to win out, they would face each other in the national championship game, giving Duke a chance to right the wrong that occurred two years ago when UNC ruined Duke Coach Mike Krzyzewski’s storybook ending to his career by beating Duke in the semi-finals.