Virginia is enjoying its' most successful seaon in five years and is in great shape for a potential at large NCAA Tournament bid. The Cavaliers currently sit at 21-7, 8-6 in the ACC. Most bracketology reports have Virginia safely in the NCAA tournament at this point. A win over FSU or Maryland would give Virginia its' first winning record in the ACC since 2007. Virginia is currently in for fourth place in the ACC tournament. If they want to do any damage in the ACC tournament and beyond, that's exactly where they will need to remain.
Miami holds an identical 8-6 ACC record, but Virginia's victory of the Canes back on January 7th gives UVA the tiebreaker. NC State and Clemson are nipping at Virgina and Miami's heels, both holding a 7-7 acc record. Virginia won the only meeting with NC State and split with Clemson. Virginia is in good shape right now, but the margin for error is razor thin.
The Cavaliers must avoid playing on Thursday in the ACC tournament for a variety of reasons.
1. Fatigue will be a major concern for Virginia. The Cavaliers have been playing with just eight players since center Assane Sene went down with an injury in mid January. Joe Harris has been playing with a cast on his non shooting hand for the better of February, and will have to wear it for the rest of the season. Freshman guard Malcolm Brogdon has also been dealing with a foot injury that has limited his minutes. It would be very difficult task for this team to have to win on Thursday and then turn around and play again on Friday.
2. RPI: Virginia only had to play bottom feeders, Boston College, Wake Forest, and Georgia Tech one time each this year, which helped their RPI. Having to play one of these teams again would hurt the Cavs RPI. A loss would be catastrophic .
3. Seeding: Virginia would be well served to stay infront of Miami in the ACC standings. Miami has two marquee ACC wins, Duke and Flordia State. To date, Virginia is 0-4 against the top three in the ACC. If Miami finishes in the top 4, it would be one more thing on their resume' that Virginia would not have.
The 'Hoos can really help their chances by defeating Florida State tomorrow night. It also would not hurt if NC State knocked off Miami tonight.