More from Vitale — Bubble watch at a glance
March 3, 2005
I really enjoyed calling Wake Forest's 98-91 home win over Georgia Tech on Wednesday night. Here are a few thoughts from the game...
I don't believe that Georgia Tech (16-10, 7-8 ACC) can be left out of the NCAA Tournament. You can't tell me that coach Paul Hewitt's Yellow Jackets aren't good enough to be chosen as one of the 34 at-large teams (if Georgia Tech doesn't get hot and win the ACC tournament). This talented team is capable of making a big run.
If Georgia Tech is a No. 8 seed, the top seed in that bracket will be sweating, baby!
Remember, just last year Georgia Tech went all the way to the national championship game before losing to Connecticut.
Let me tell you, when the Yellow Jackets make it to the Big Dance this year, lots of higher seeds will be hoping they're in another part of the bracket. This club is dangerous now that senior guard B.J. Elder, who had missed time due to injury, is back in the lineup. With veteran leaders like Elder, junior guard Jarrett Jack and senior center Luke Schenscher — plus freshman guard Anthony Morrow providing a lift shooting outside — watch out.
If Georgia Tech is a No. 8 seed, the top seed in that bracket will be sweating, baby! The Yellow Jackets close the regular season Saturday at home versus Clemson (ESPN Full Court, 1:30 p.m. ET).
Wake closing in on No. 1 seed
As for Wake Forest (25-4, 12-3 ACC), defense is still a concern — and D is a common denominator in its four defeats. The Demon Deacons have allowed more than 90 points in each of their losses (and 100-plus twice).
Yes, the Demon Deacons rallied to beat Georgia Tech, completing a perfect home season at 16-0 (they finish the regular season Sunday at N.C. State). The win also provided a great farewell to the home fans for seniors Vytas Danelius, Taron Downey and Jamaal Levy.
Will it also be the last home game for sophomore star Chris Paul? Let me tell you, the point guard is having a great time playing at Wake Forest, and he understands the importance of enjoying college life. I spoke to him before the game, and he mentioned that USC quarterback Matt Leinart decided to return to college instead of being lured by the big bucks. Leinart understands that the NFL will be there for him next year.
I hope Paul puts the NBA on hold and comes back to Wake Forest next season. He is a great player, and he's great for college basketball.
With the win over Georgia Tech, Wake Forest moves one step closer to a No. 1 seed in the Big Dance. North Carolina and Illinois are locks, with Wake and Kentucky the most likely to join them on the top line of the bracket. There's still time for that to change, as conference tournaments will play a big role in determining the top seeds this season.
Dick Vitale coached the Pistons and the University of Detroit before broadcasting ESPN's first college basketball game in 1979. Send a question to Vitale for possible use on ESPNEWS.