Florida State began the week in Syracuse falling to the Orange who shot 70% on two-point shots throughout the game. The loss was not killer as it was on the road against a very good opponent, and didn't necessarily hurt their tournament odds. However, with a loss against Miami despite a surging comeback on Sunday night, their second loss of the week, the 'Noles find themselves one game below .500 in the ACC as they continue to improve their tournament résumé. A win over the #11 ranked Hurricanes would have provided another quality win that FSU desperately needs at this point.
To finish with a .500 record in the ACC, which would look much better than a losing record when selection Sunday comes along, the 'Noles must win the next two games against Georgia Tech and at Virginia Tech, and then win one of their final three games, at Duke, vs. Notre Dame and then vs. Syracuse to finish up the season. It doesn't end there however as the ACC Tournament will be the last chance to prove to the committee that they are NCAA Tournament worthy.
Currently, Florida State ranks 51st in RPI and 60th in strength of schedule. Florida State does have one thing on their side in the fact that they do not have any bad losses, with their worst coming to a #87 RPI ranked Clemson on the road. NC State and Wake Forest continue to flirt with a sub 100 RPI which could add or subtract three top 100 wins to a list that already includes five teams including Virginia and Florida.
Bracket Matrix, a site that breaks down a wide variety of NCAA Tournament predictions from the likes of ESPN and CBS Sports to independently run Wordpress sites, has Florida State in the field in 17 of the 23 brackets that they compiled that were released following the Miami game. Notably, ESPN's Joe Lunardi has FSU as the final team in the tournament and Jerry Palm of CBS Sports has the 'Noles as a #9 seed. To sum up what all of this means, the Seminoles have done anything but lock up their NCAA tournament birth and could very well find themselves back in the NIT for the third time in four years.
In the end, 20 is the magic number for FSU. 19 wins at tournament time would equate to at least one big win for FSU, however losing in the first round of the ACC tournament to a non-quality opponent. It would also place FSU on the bubble and have its season come down to how the fellow bubble teams compete in their conference tournaments. 20 wins, even with a first round ACC tournament win, would more than likely put the 'Noles over the top due to the quality wins it would bring.