Steve Forbe's rips Joe Lunardi Photo credit: ACC Network

Wake Forest head men’s basketball coach Steve Forbes vows to stay in his lane. And he’s urging ESPN’s Joe Lunardi to do the same.

The Demon Deacons coach went on a rant earlier this week while speaking on the ACC Network, ripping Lunardi for his past criticisms of the conference. Lunardi is ESPN’s lead bracketologist. Perhaps not so ironically, Forbes’ rant came after Lunardi’s latest projection put Wake Forest in the first four out.

“I don’t know how bracketology works,” Forbes said. “I stay in my lane. I leave it to the experts. Joe Lunardi at ESPN, he’s an expert. He’s carved out a great career doing it and so good for him. The problem that I have with Joe and the ACC is he doesn’t like to stay in his lane. He’s criticized our league and our players in the past. He said that if we want more bids, then we got to do a better job recruiting. And I didn’t realize he was a recruiting expert.

“I’ve never seen him at a recruiting event in the summer. I’ve never seen him do a recruiting class list or rankings. I’ve never seen him on draft night. I’ve never seen him do a draft board. Here’s the thing about it. We have the most drafted players in the history of the NBA from the ACC. And if we’re talking about over the past five years since the NET, we’re second only to the SEC in drafted players, and it’s not even close.”

The ACC is in the midst of a downward trend in terms of sending teams to the NCAA Tournament. Five ACC teams earned bids the last two seasons, but the conference had nine teams participating in the tournament as recently as 2018.

Forbes, however, leaves that stuff to the experts, until he doesn’t like what those experts are saying. Wake Forest was coming off a dominant 91-58 win over Pitt at the time of Forbes’ rant, bringing his team’s record to 17-9 (9-6 ACC). Forbes aimed his rant at Lunardi, but ESPN’s bracketologist is not alone in leaving Wake Forest off the field of 68. CBS Sports has Wake Forest out, and not even on the bubble.

But that doesn’t mean Wake Forest can’t make the NCAA Tournament with five game left on their schedule. The Demon Deacons will play No. 8 Duke Blue Devils Saturday at Wake Forest. A win against Duke this weekend should help Wake Forest’s resume as they attempt to sneak into the field of 68, but it might not stop Lunardi from criticizing the ACC’s recruiting methods.

[ACC Network]

About Brandon Contes

Brandon Contes is a staff writer for Awful Announcing and The Comeback. He previously helped carve the sports vertical for Mediaite and spent more than three years with Barrett Sports Media. Send tips/comments/complaints to