The Daily Nole

What to Watch For Wednesday: FSU Hoops Gears Up for ACC Tournament

Mike Olivella/FSU athletics

It’s a big week for Florida State athletics. FSU will be eyeing championships in more sports than just one.

The next seven days for the Seminoles features rivalry games, top-25 match-ups and more. As is our Wednesday tradition, here’s a look at what to watch for over the next week in FSU athletics:

1. FSU men’s hoops eyes ACC Tournament title
After winning the ACC regular season title for the first time in program history, Florida State basketball will look for its second ACC Tournament title this week in Greensboro. FSU won the ACC Championship in 2012 and reached the title game for the third time last season before falling to Duke. The fourth-ranked Seminoles finished the regular season with a record of 26-5 and set a program record for ACC wins by finishing 16-4 in conference.

Head coach Leonard Hamilton was named the ACC Coach of the Year for the third time. Devin Vassell and Trent Forrest were each second-team All-ACC selections. Top-seeded FSU will open its stay in Greensboro with a quarterfinal on Thursday against either No. 8 seed Clemson or No. 9 seed Miami. The Seminoles swept the Hurricanes this season, but split the two match-ups with Clemson. Thursday’s contest begins at 12:30 p.m. EST and airs on ESPN. Semifinal match-ups will take place on Friday. The ACC Championship will be held Saturday night.

2. FSU track and field heads to NCAA Indoor Championships
The Florida State men are coming off a third straight ACC indoor title as the Seminoles get set to wrap up the indoor season with the NCAA Championships on Friday and Saturday. The FSU men look like legitimate contenders. Athletes to watch include Trey Cunningham, Fabian Edoki, Isaac Grimes, Caleb Parker and Jhevaughn Matherson among others. Nine FSU athletes qualified for the NCAA Championships. On the women’s side, sprinter Ka’Tia Seymour will try to medal after winning the 60 and 200 meters at the ACC Championships.

3. FSU softball visits Florida, begins ACC play
The season is heating up for No. 12 Florida State softball. The Seminoles have an important week as they visit rival Florida on Wednesday night before opening ACC play on Friday at Duke. Wednesday’s contest will feature top-15 teams as FSU visits the No. 7 Gators. They teams split two meetings last season with each team winning on the road. Charla Echols leads Florida with a .410 average, seven home runs and 26 RBIs. From the circle, Natalie Lugo and Rylee Trlicek have combined to go 16-4 and both have sub-2 ERAs.

Florida is 21-4 and faces an FSU team off to a 17-6 start. Cassidy Davis leads FSU this season with five home runs and 22 RBIs. Kiersten Landers and Sydney Sherrill are both hitting better than .360 for the Seminoles. Pitcher Caylan Arnold is 5-2 with a 1.14 ERA. Wednesday’s contest begins at 6 p.m. EST and airs on SEC Network+. After that, FSU heads to Duke to face the Blue Devils for three games. Friday’s contest starts at 5 p.m. EST. Saturday and Sunday’s games will start at 1 p.m. All three stream on ACC Network Extra. On Tuesday, FSU visits Coastal Carolina.

4. FSU baseball hosts Georgia Tech
Florida State is coming off its first win over rival Florida in 12 tries and will head home to face Illinois State on Wednesday. After that, the 19th-ranked Seminoles will play their first ACC home series as Georgia Tech arrives at Dick Howser Stadium for three games. Like FSU, the Yellow Jackets are 11-5 overall, but went 2-1 in their first ACC series of the year.

Michael Guldberg is hitting a team-high .473 with 14 runs scored for Georgia Tech. Luke Bartnicki and Zach Maxwell are both off to strong starts on the mound. The same is true for FSU’s C.J. Van Eyk, who comes into the weekend with a 1.31 ERA. FSU outfielder Elijah Cabell leads the ACC with seven home runs and 28 RBIs. Friday and Saturday’s contests begin at 6 p.m. EST. Sunday’s series finale begins at 1 p.m. EST. All three stream on ACC Network Extra. Following the 3-game set, FSU opens a 2-game midweek series against UCF on Tuesday.

5. FSU women’s hoops learns NCAA Tournament destination
Florida State women’s basketball was unable to capture its first ACC title on Sunday against NC State, but the Seminoles will find out what lies ahead. At 24-8, the Seminoles will be tuned in Monday for the NCAA Selection Show. FSU is currently projected as a No. 5 seed by ESPN. The Seminoles would likely need to get a No. 4 seed or higher to host the first two rounds of the NCAA Tournament. The Selection Show starts at 7 p.m. EST on ESPN.

Mike Ferguson is the editor of The Daily Nole. Follow Mike on Twitter @MikeWFerguson. Like The Daily Nole on Facebook. To pitch an idea, author a post or to learn more about The Daily Nole, email Mike Ferguson at Mike@TheDailyNole.com.

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