ACC record in 2024 NCAA Tournament (Updated after first Sweet 16 games)

The ACC is off to a strong start in the 2024 NCAA Tournament.

Kyle Filipowski, Duke
Kyle Filipowski, Duke / Elsa/GettyImages

The ACC received five NCAA Tournament bids. Included were the obvious heavy-hitters (No. 1 seed North Carolina, No. 4 seed Duke), a couple impressive regular season teams (No. 6 seed Clemson, No. 10 seed Virginia), and the bid-stealing ACC champs, No. 11 seed NC State.

Few conferences can match the ACC's pedigree on the basketball front. Duke and UNC are all-time great programs with decades of history and acclaim. NC State is, well, in the same state. Virginia has been a March regular under Tony Bennett, while Clemson continues to raise its profile outside the football sphere.

Both UNC and Duke lost to the Wolfpack in the course of the ACC Tournament, but North Carolina was the best team in the conference by a healthy margin this season. Duke was the only real point of comparison. NC State struggled for a solid portion of the campaign in a post-Terq Smith world, but a well-timed heater landed Kevin Keatts' squad in the big dance.

ACC record in March Madness

After first Sweet 16 games: 9-2

The Thursday night Sweet 16 games offered the first big hiccups for the ACC in March Madness. Clemson, however, did their part as the No. 6 seed picked off another high seed in the region with a thrilling victory over No. 2 Arizona in the West. That pushes Brad Brownell's Tigers into the Elite Eight. But they won't face North Carolina as the Tar Heels got into a heavyweight offensive fight with No. 4 seed Alabama and came up two points short. That makes UNC the first No. 1 seed to be eliminated in the 2024 NCAA Tournament.

After Second Round: 8-1

All four ACC teams that advanced to the Round of 32 (North Carolina, Duke, Clemson, and NC State) picked up big wins in the Second Round to advance to the Sweet 16. UNC picked up an emphatic win over Michigan State, Duke completely blew out Cinderella candidate James Madison, Clemson notched a surprise upset with a win over Baylor, and NC State's historic run continued with another win, this one in OT, over Jack Gohlke and Oakland.

After First Round: 4-1

We can hardly be shocked at how well the ACC has done through the first round. If anything, we can be (mildly) shocked about how the only losing team met its demise. Virgina, banished to the First Four as a No. 10 seed, was thwacked by Colorado State, 67-42. The Cavaliers went almost 10 minutes in the first half without a single made basket.

NIL and the changing landscape of recruiting have not been kind to Virginia. The Cavs were always a bit volatile in March, but we're used to Tony Bennett building regular-season powerhouses predicated on elite defense. When Virginia lacks the personnel to create advantages on offense and make shots, however, it doesn't matter how good the defense is.

Beyond Virginia's embarrassing bow out, the ACC has been on a roll.

Clemson was a popular upset pick, with No. 11 seed New Mexico having mowed through the Mountain West Tournament. Well... those folks look foolish, and please don't check my bracket. The Tigers rolled, 77-56, behind an excellent performance from Chase Hunter (21 points, 8-of-16 FG). New Mexico won the rebounding battle and even earned more free throws, but Clemson's defense held the Lobos to 29.7 percent shooting (13.0 percent from 3-point range).

NC State also took a sledgehammer to Texas Tech, torching the No. 6 seed 80-67 behind Ben Middlebrooks' heater off the bench (23 points, 6-of-8 FG). DJ Burns Jr. and Mohamed Diarra continue to pummel opposing frontcourts.

North Carolina's win over No. 16 seed Wagner wasn't much to write home about. The final score was 90-52, with the Tar Heels never feeling much heat. RJ Davis led the way with 22 points on 13 shots.

Duke beat No. 13 seed Vermont, 61-47. It was a bumpy game for the Blue Devils, who are working through a mild funk. But, as the second half progressed, Duke took control of the game and suffocated the inept Catamounts offense. Kyle Filipowski only scored three points, but impacted the game with his physicality and playmaking at the five spot. Jared McCain and Mark Mitchell led Duke in scoring with 15 points a piece.

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