Notre Dame basketball is 5-0 in the ACC, and has officially claimed the top spot in the conference.
Following a 76-71 win over Virginia Tech, Notre Dame has finally secured the top spot in the ACC. With a pivotal matchup against Florida State up next, the Irish are in a position to take a two-game lead in the conference.
With games against Duke, North Carolina, Louisville, and FSU still left on their schedule, Notre Dame isn’t in the clear yet. But being undefeated in the conference with 13 games remaining in the regular season, the Irish’s ACC lead makes them the early favorite to reign as conference champions.
So far, Notre Dame has only claimed one top 25 victory on the season. However, their 1-2 start against ranked opponents is much better than it looks.
Their win over Louisville gave the Irish an early advantage and a much-needed ACC win. From that moment on, Notre Dame has seemed to be more confident than they were all season. Even during their 9-0 start to the year, the Irish weren’t as dominant as they are right now.
Their losses to Villanova and Purdue were two of the best games of the 2016-2017 season. Without two second half collapses, Notre Dame would be undefeated in the ACC and their overall record.
But the season is still young. The conference may be Notre Dame’s for the taking, but without the consistency of their stars, the Irish can fall at any moment.
With Bonzie Colson, Matt Farrell, and Steve Vasturia leading the way, though, Notre Dame’s future looks bright. As one of the best starting units in the NCAA, this team has everything it needs to win the most prominent conference in college basketball.
Next, the Irish will take on Florida State. At 4-1 in the ACC, the Seminoles will be Notre Dame’s toughest ACC opponent thus far. Ranked ninth in the country, FSU was just as hot as the Irish before their 96-83 loss to North Carolina.
As Notre Dame works their way into tougher conference matchups, they future is entirely in their hands. Beat a couple of ranked ACC teams, and this Irish squad can quickly work their way into the top 10. But if they’re unable to keep their winning streak going, Notre Dame can easily turn a hot start into a disastrous season.
Moving forward, the Irish will need to be near perfection every time they step on the court. With the ball in their court, though, Notre Dame has a bright future ahead.