There are certain mysteries that simply can’t be explained.

The Bermuda Triangle is one.

Head cheese is another. What the heck is it and why in the world would anyone even think about eating it?

And then there’s the mystery of what happens to ACC teams at the College World Series.

The conference has sent at least 1 team to college baseball’s premier event in each of the past 17 years it’s been held. Its 101 entries since the World Series was 1st held in 1947 is the 3rd most behind the SEC and the now-dearly departed Pac-12. In 2006, league representatives made up exactly half of the 8-team field.

And yet, when it comes to winning national championships, Omaha is to the ACC what the Bermuda Triangle has been to wayward boats and planes.

It’s the place where title hopes disappear, often for no logical reason.

Chalk it up to bad matchups, bad luck, failed COVID tests or in at least 1 case, an untimely bad throw.

It’s always been something,

Despite all the talent the ACC has produced, especially recently, only Wake Forest in 1955 and Virginia exactly 60 years later have managed to defy the bad karma to bring home the top prize.

That’s 2 fewer titles than Cal State-Fullerton has won all by itself.

Of the teams making the most CWS appearances without winning a championship, the top 3 all play in the ACC – Florida State with 23, Clemson with 12 and North Carolina with 11.

“It comes down to those little fine details in Omaha,” Virginia coach Brian O’Connor said after his team was eliminated by TCU last year. “Everybody has talent. Everybody earned the right to be here. It just comes down to guys rising up in key moments.”

For some reason, it’s almost always the other team’s guys that do the rising up.

That was the case a season ago when LSU’s Tommy “Tanks” White – a transfer from NC State – broke Wake Forest’s heart with an 11th-inning homer that prevented the top-ranked Deacons from advancing to the championship series.

At least Wake had a chance to control its own destiny.

It’s an opportunity NC State was denied in 2021 when it was sent home by NCAA officials under controversial circumstances after multiple players tested positive for COVID just 1 victory from advancing to the championship round.

There have been other frustrating close calls.

UNC lost 4-3 to Oregon in the deciding game of its best-of-3 final series in 2006, with the winning run scoring on an 8th inning throwing error before losing a championship rematch against the Ducks the following year.

Florida State also came up 1 run short in 1999 against Miami. It’s 1 of the 4 national championships the Hurricanes won. All of them came before they joined the ACC in 2005.

Since then they’ve made 4 more trips to Omaha. And each time they’ve come away empty.

So what do ACC teams need to do to change their luck and finally start winning championships?
Beefing up their NIL collectives might help prevent the likes of Tommy Tanks and Cannon Peebles from transferring to SEC schools.

But it’s not as if there’s a dearth of talent in the ACC. The league has 54 players selected in last year’s Major League draft, including 9 in the 1st 2 rounds. And one of the best players in the country this year, pitcher Chase Burns, left Tennessee to come to Wake Forest.

If the players are there and the depth of competition is there, all the conference can do is keep showing up and taking its shot.

And so another postseason begins.

It kicked off Tuesday with the 1st 3 games of the ACC’s conference tournament in Charlotte and will pick up steam once the NCAA announces its 64-team field and regional brackets early next week.

As usual, the list of national championship contenders will be top-heavy with SEC teams. That’s only natural since they’ve combined to win the past 4 titles and hold down 3 of the top 4 spots in the final regular season poll.

But the ACC is loaded, too.

Regular season champion North Carolina and Coastal Division winner Clemson will be top 8 seeds with homefield advantages through the super regionals. NC State has caught fire now that some of its best players have returned from injury. Florida State and Virginia are 2 of the highest-scoring teams in the nation. Wake Forest, especially with Burns on the mound, is postseason-tested and dangerous.

It would be an upset of epic proportions if at least one of those teams doesn’t extend the ACC’s streak by making it to Omaha. And gets its shot at solving the mystery that has baffled all but 2 others before it.

Maybe this will be the year the law of averages finally catches up with the conference and someone is able to find a way of navigating through its Bermuda Triangle with the championship trophy in hand.

It’s about time.