Countdown to tipoff: Clemson hosts Yellow Jackets to close regular season

Countdown to tipoff: Clemson hosts Yellow Jackets to close regular season

Basketball

Countdown to tipoff: Clemson hosts Yellow Jackets to close regular season

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Clemson closes the regular season tonight when it hosts Georgia Tech at 7 p.m., at Littlejohn Coliseum in in Clemson.

The Tigers will celebrate Senior Night as well as they honor graduate transfers Tevin Mack, Curran Scott and Paul Grinde, who will all be playing their final regular season game at Littlejohn.

This is the second time in the last in the last nine days Clemson and Georgia Tech have met on the hardwood. The Yellow Jackets beat the Tigers on Feb. 25 in Atlanta, 68-59. It was the first of the Yellow Jackets’ three straight wins coming into tonight. They have won five of their last six games overall.

This will be the final game of the season for Georgia Tech due to NCAA probation. Georgia Tech dropped the appeal of its postseason ban by the NCAA last week and it will not play in next week’s ACC Tournament.

With Georgia Tech (16-14, 10-9 ACC) banned from postseason play, the Tigers can finish no worse than No. 8 in the ACC standings regardless of tonight’s outcome, which means Clemson will have a first-day bye in the ACC Tournament at the Greensboro Coliseum in Greensboro, N.C. However, Clemson can improve its seeding with a win and a little bit of help along the way.

The Tigers (15-14, 9-10 ACC) can finish anywhere from No. 5 to the No. 8 seed in next week’s tournament should they beat Georgia Tech tonight and get some help this weekend. A loss tonight, and Clemson will be locked in as the No. 8 seed.

SETTING THE SCENE BETWEEN THE TIGERS AND YELLOW JACKETS

Georgia Tech at Clemson

When: Tonight, 7 p.m.

Where: Littlejohn Coliseum, Clemson

TV: ESPN 2

  • The Clemson Tigers will look to move back to the .500 mark in league play with its 10th win of the ACC season.
  • It’s senior night. The Tigers will honor graduate players Tevin Mack, Curran Scott and Paul Grinde.
  • The contest will be televised on ESPN 2 with Anish Shroff and Malcolm Huckab calling the action, while Don Munson and Tim Bourret will call the action on the radio waves. The game also be heard on Sirius 84, XM 84, Internet 84.

CLEMSON/GEORGIA TECH SERIES HISTORY:

  • OVERALL: Clemson leads series, 73-64
  • HOME: Clemson leads series, 46-16
  • ROAD: Clemson trails series, 26-44
  • NEUTRAL: Clemson trails series, 1-4
  • LAST MEETING: Feb. 25, 2020 (L, 68-59)
  • STREAK: Lost 1

CLEMSON BASKETBALL HEADLINES

  • The Tigers have won six of their last seven games at home and are 11-5 this year at Littlejohn Coliseum. In their last home game, they beat No. 6 Florida State, 70-69.
  • Clemson is in a three-way tie for seventh place in the ACC standings, having won four of its last six games, with the two losses on the road at Georgia Tech on Feb. 25 and Virginia Tech on Wednesday night. The Tigers are 6-3 at home in the ACC this season, having beaten Duke, Syracuse, Louisville and Florida State at Littlejohn.
  • In their meeting on Feb. 25, Jose Alvarado and Michael Devoe combined to score 33 of Georgia Tech’s 68 points and the Yellow Jackets pulled away for their fifth straight home win, a 68-59 triumph over Clemson at McCamish Pavilion in Atlanta. Alvarado overcame an injury, that forced him to momentarily leave the court midway through the first half, to score 19 points on 8-of-14 shooting. Devoe scored 14 points to go along with six rebounds and a career-high eight assists. Moses Wright also reached double figures for the Yellow Jackets with 10 points.
  • Clemson junior Aamir Simms scored 23 points in a losing effort against Georgia Tech the last time the two teams met.
  • Clemson drew six charges in the victory over Florida State on Feb. 29. It was the most charges taken by a Clemson team since Jan. 7, 1987 when the Tigers took seven in a win over NC State and tied for the third-most charges taken in a game since Sports Information Office started keeping the stat in 1978-79.

ABOUT GEORGIA TECH

  • Tech has three starters averaging in double figures this season, but starting guards Michael Devoe and Jose Alvarado, Tech’s two leading scorers, have accounted for 40.1 percent of the Yellow Jackets’ points in ACC games, and 41.7 percent of the scoring in games in which they have both played.
  • Moses Wright has scored 10 or more in all but seven games this season and has doubled his scoring and rebounding averages over his sophomore season. He ranks 16th in the ACC in scoring, 14th in rebounding and third in field goal percentage. Until his 33 points at Syracuse, Wright had scored 20 or more in a game only once this season (22 at North Carolina on Jan. 4).
  • Jose Alvarado has averaged 15.2 points (45.9 FG pct., 34.9 3-pt pct.), 4.1 assists and 2.4 steals in 21 games since his return from an ankle injury on Dec. 22. He has scored 20 or more points seven times.
  • After ranking near the bottom of the ACC in shooting over the first three years under Josh Pastner, Georgia Tech now ranks No. 2 in the ACC in field goal percentage (46.3) against the conference, No. 6 in three-point percentage (33.8) and No. 9 in scoring (70.11). Tech has finished the season averaging 70 or more points against the ACC only once (2015-16) in the last nine years.
  • Tech is 4-5 on the road this season in the ACC, having defeated NC State, North Carolina, Boston College and Wake Forest. It is the first time since the 2007-08 season (4-4 record) that the Yellow Jackets have won four ACC road games. The last time Tech won five conference road games was 1995-96 (5-3), when the Jackets finished 13-3 overall and won the ACC regular season title. It is the only time Tech has won as many as five ACC road games.

POSSIBLE STARTING LINEUP

Clemson

  • G 0 Clyde Trapp 6-4 194 Jr.
  • G 2 Al-Amir Dawes 6-2 180 Fr.
  • G 15 John Newman III 6-5 197 So.
  • F 13 Tevin Mack 6-6 227 Gr.
  • F 25 Aamir Simms 6-8.5 240 Jr.

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