For 29� minutes Georgia Tech stayed even with Duke, which began the week as the nation's No. 1 team, but the Yellow Jackets then let the Blue Devils slip away to a 55-42 ACC victory. Clemson wasn't so careless. The Tigers, with Bobby Conrad converting eight free throws in overtime, handed Duke its first loss of the season, 87-82. That left Clemson 3-0 and on top in the ACC. Meanwhile Duke went plummeting to sixth in the league standings by losing 82-67 at home to North Carolina. The Tar Heels went into their four-corner offense with less than eight minutes to go, and Al Wood, who had 20 points, promptly broke a 56-all deadlock by slipping behind a Blue Devil defender for a basket. Wood earlier snapped a 58-58 tie against Wake Forest with a fourpoint play, scoring on a scoop shot despite being intentionally fouled and adding a pair of free throws to propel the Tar Heels to a 72-68 win.
Clemson's hopes of solidifying its ACC lead on Saturday were dashed 86-83 at Wake Forest as the Deacons earned their first league triumph by overcoming a 55-46 deficit with 15:13 remaining. That gave Virginia a chance to take over first place in the conference. But the Cavaliers were upset 64-56 at North Carolina State. Virginia Center Ralph Sampson was held to 11 points by the swarming Wolfpack, and State's Sidney Lowe, a freshman guard, directed a disciplined offense that was paced by Hawkeye Whitney's 21 points. Two days earlier against Maryland, Whitney had 16 points and triggered a 10-0 spurt that pulled the Wolfpack from five points back with 5:12 left and gave them a 67-62 verdict. As a result, North Carolina State, which was expected to have a down season, ended up on top of the ACC—the Amazingly Cockeyed Conference?—with a 3-0 record. Since dropping its season opener, the Wolfpack has won 11 games in a row.
St. John's Coach Lou Carnesecca, suffering from a sore back, was soothed by a heating pad and two wins—44-42 at Princeton and 97-64 over Seton Hall. While adjusting the heating pad under his shirt during a practice, Carnesecca was embarrassed when his trousers, which he thought were being held up by a trainer, fell to half-mast in front of a group of fans. Also embarrassed was Seton Hall Coach Bill Raftery. With his team trailing the Redmen 48-19 at halftime, Raftery sent a note to Carnesecca: "I surrender."
Syracuse, one of only two major-college unbeatens, got 22 points from Center Roosevelt Bouie in a 72-69 win at West Virginia. Then, after the Orangemen beat Baltimore 94-64, Bouie had 17 points and Guard Eddie Moss came up with seven steals in a 64-54 defeat of Rhode Island.
1. ST. JOHN'S (11-1)
2. SYRACUSE (14-0)
3. DUKE (12-2)