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NC State freshman Abdul-Malik Abu made a promise at his friend Deah Barakat's wedding that the Wolfpack would dispatch North Carolina and Duke in the same season -- the perfect wedding gift. On Jan. 11, the Wolfpack beat the Blue Devils, as Abu fulfilled half of the vow.

"I'm gonna beat Duke and UNC for you as my wedding gift" @malikabu

A photo posted by @arabprodigy0 on

But Barakat, his new wife, Yusor Abu-Salha, and his new brother-in-law Razan Abu-Salha were murdered in Chapel Hill on Feb. 10, before they could see Abu and his teammates beat North Carolina. The Wolfpack won 58-46 Tuesday night, ending their 12-game losing streak at Chapel Hill. 

When I heard the news I was in disbelief I couldn't quite understand how this was possible. I couldn't wrap my head around the thought of you and your beautiful wife no longer being alive. you supported me before you met me and showed unconditional love when you did. always excited and happy, always willing to joke around about how the season would go. For the short time I've known you, you blessed me with the opportunity to attend your wedding a wedding I see as my first real wedding. We didn't grow up together but when I heard the news I was hurt like I've known you my whole life. I just wanna say thank you to you your wife and family for the support and making North Carolina feel like home. Rest in peace brother and sisters may Allah bless all three of you with the highest heaven. I know you'll always and forever be a NC State supporter. Rest easy my dude

A photo posted by Abdul-Malik Abu (@malikabu) on

For Abu, the win meant he made good on a promise and ensured that for one night, there were a whole lot more Wolfpack fans.

H/T: TheWolfpacker.com

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Welcome to the new-look ACC. A strong league got even stronger with the additions of Notre Dame, Pittsburgh and Syracuse now on its roster. Will these former Big East powers dominate in their first season in a new conference? Or will league staples Duke, North Carolina and North Carolina State top the standings? Set your rankings below!

Conference rankings: American | A-10 | Big 12 | Big East | Big Ten | C-USA | Pac-12 | SEC

More rankings: 2013-14 preseason Top 25 | Conferences

2013-14 ACC basketball teams

Boston College

Boston College

2012-13 overall: 16-17
2013 ACC: 7-11

Clemson

Clemson

2012-13 overall: 13-18
2013 ACC: 5-13

Duke

Duke

2012-13 overall: 30-6
2013 ACC: 14-4

Florida State

Florida State

2012-13 overall: 18-16
2013 ACC: 9-9

Georgia Tech

Georgia Tech

2012-13 overall: 16-15
2013 ACC: 6-12

Maryland

Maryland

2012-13 overall: 25-13
2013 ACC: 8-10

Miami

Miami

2012-13 overall: 29-7
2013 ACC: 15-3

North Carolina

North Carolina

2012-13 overall: 25-11
2013 ACC: 12-6

North Carolina State

North Carolina State

2012-13 overall: 24-11
2013 ACC: 11-7

Notre Dame

Notre Dame

2012-13 overall: 25-10
2013 Big East: 11-7

Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh

2012-13 overall: 24-9
2013 Big East: 12-6

Syracuse

Syracuse

2012-13 overall: 30-10
2013 Big East: 11-7

Virginia

Virginia

2012-13 overall: 23-12
2013 ACC: 11-7

Virginia Tech

Virginia Tech

2012-13 overall: 13-19
2013 ACC: 4-14

Wake Forest

Wake Forest

2012-13 overall: 13-18
2012 Big East: 6-12

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It was a tall order to study all 74 teams to have won the NCAA basketball tournament over the years and then rank them, but that's exactly what our team of college hoops experts have done. We'll make your job a little easier and just list their top 20 for you to put in order. Click on the logos below to submit your ballot.

Best NCAA tourney champions

Kentucky (2012)

North Carolina (2009)

Florida (2007)

UConn (1999)

UConn (1999)

Connecticut

Kentucky (1996)

Arkansas (1994)

Duke (1992)

UNLV (1990)

Georgetown (1984)

North Carolina (1982)

Indiana (1976)

NC State (1974)

UCLA (1973)

UCLA (1972)

UCLA (1969)

UCLA (1968)

UCLA (1967)

UCLA (1964)

Ohio State (1960)

San Francisco (1956)

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Sadly, at least for Michigan State fans, the Spartans have been knocked out of the NCAA tournament by Louisville. Michigan State is the first No. 1 seed to fall in the tournament, but both Kentucky and North Carolina could take the plunge this evening if all doesn't go according to plan. Three double-digit seeds will be looking to end some tournament dreams early and keep the clock from striking midnight on their own personal Cinderella stories, but will we see any more upsets in the second half of the Sweet 16?


(1) Kentucky vs. (4) Indiana

Kentucky has run roughshod over its first two opponents, while Indiana barely survived a scare against VCU.

SportsNation

Which team will win this Sweet 16 matchup?

  •  
    23%
  •  
    77%

Discuss (Total votes: 114,471)


(1) North Carolina vs. (13) Ohio

No. 13 Ohio is the lowest-ranked team still remaining, having upset both Michigan and South Florida in the first two rounds.

SportsNation

Which team will win this Sweet 16 matchup?

  •  
    84%
  •  
    16%

Discuss (Total votes: 25,476)


(2) Kansas vs. (11) NC State

Both NC State and Kansas survived close games in the round of 32 -- NC State upset Georgetown 66-63, while Kansas eked out a 63-60 win against Purdue.

SportsNation

Which team will win this Sweet 16 matchup?

  •  
    72%
  •  
    28%

Discuss (Total votes: 25,044)


(3) Baylor vs. (10) Xavier

Baylor and Xavier are coming off of big wins in the round of 32, a far cry from the close games they won in the round of 64.

SportsNation

Which team will win this Sweet 16 matchup?

  •  
    82%
  •  
    18%

Discuss (Total votes: 28,087)

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